The Major Decision: What Should You Study

Wiener Douyon, CollegeFindMe Intern

What’s a major?

The question that any senior could ponder for hours is a simple one: “What do you want to major in?” Your major, or academic concentration, is a set of courses around a subject that you’ll eventually get a degree in. However, this will in no way cement your future. Besides, who knows what they will focus on for the rest of their lives? Just like how you are always changing and growing, so are your interests and passions.

So, instead of agonizing over a decision that may change in a couple of weeks, focus on what you are passionate about now. This guide will help you figure out how to choose your major. Let’s begin!

Redefining majors

In many ways, choosing a major is almost as hard as finding the best-fit college. That’s because deciding on a major is linked with finding your purpose. It’s very rare that someone figures out their purpose by senior year of high school.  So let’s redefine what a major is. Instead of treating it like our destinies, let’s say that it is your field of interest. Some interests may include Astrophysics, Art History, Electrical Engineering, or Dance!  

Choosing a major

By believing that majors are basically areas of interest, all you have to do is to find what you like to do. Here are some questions to help you find out what you’re looking for in a major:

  • Atmosphere
    • Do you enjoy working in a team? Are you the most efficient and determined working alone? It helps to understand how you function and which type of environment you would thrive in. Choose a major that suits your working style. A business major needs to be prepared to work in groups, while a computer scientist might have more alone time.
  • Office Type
    • Do you want to work at a desk? Outside? In a studio? At home? Different majors tend to lead to different types of workplaces, so ask yourself where you picture your future job taking place. If that seems too far in the future, think about where you like to study!
  • Job Availability
    • You want to make sure that your major will help you get jobs that are available. For example, the tech industry is booming right now, while railroad engineering is a bit less in demand. While your first priority should be pursuing your passions, it helps to consider the job market now and in the future.
  • Salary
    • You may feel pressured to pursue a major that promises a high salary. Remember, your happiness is important too. A big paycheck isn’t the same thing as finding fulfillment. Always follow your heart, even if the money isn’t there at first.
  • Courses
    • Finally, take a look at the courses required and offered by any given major. You may think you want to be a film major, but it turns out you don’t like any of the film courses taught at your school. Look for a major that gets you excited, not just one that seems like it’ll be a good investment for the future. 

Final note

What you major in does not determine your future. Finding a job is about pursuing your passions and offering valuable skills, not just checking boxes. Even once you’ve decided on a major, keep trying new things! Whether through electives, clubs, internships, or independent research, you can absolutely chase multiple passions at once. This will help you become a more well-rounded individual with a unique set of skills to offer any employer. At the end of the day, your enthusiasm and passion are much more valuable than a transcript, so look for a major that feels right to you!

If you’d like to hear from some current college students why they chose their major, check out this video!