8 questions to ask yourself when choosing a major

question markWhat are you good at? This may seem obvious, but you have to start somewhere. Think about your high school courses, your college classes so far, and your activities. In the best case scenario, you will be passionate about what you excel in, and vice versa. Identifying your strengths could point you in the right direction.

What classes do you enjoy the most? Sometimes what you’re good at and what you like are two different things. It’s important to identify both and find a middle ground.

What do you see yourself doing in 5, 10 years? Sometimes you have to work backwards. What is it that you see yourself doing? Do you want to be a pharmacist, engineer, or an editor? Research what you should study in college to get into that career.

How can you turn your hobby into a career? There are ups and downs to majoring in your hobby, but it could be a good starting point for finding a major you enjoy. Let’s say you love fishing. You can’t exactly major in it, but you could take that passion and study environmental policy or become a field biologist.

What do you like to read? You’ve probably heard this already, but college classes require a lot of reading. If you’re fascinated by history but you don’t want to read a book a week per class on that subject, you might want to scratch that off your list. The amount of reading can get a little overwhelming even if you are interested in reading about it, but a little enthusiasm doesn’t hurt.

Will you be able to bear through the requirements? Sometimes a major or career might seem interesting, but the requirements to get there are too much to handle. And of course without the required courses, you won’t be able to complete the major. So make sure you’re not just looking at the fun courses.

Why do you want to choose this major? It’s important to choose a major for the right reasons. If you’re worried about money and job security (and trust me, we all are), you need to find the right balance between something practical and something you don’t mind studying.

Are you up for extra schooling? It seems like undergraduate degrees don’t go as far as they used to. Certain careers require an advanced degree and others don’t need anything more than a bachelor’s and some experience. If your career aspirations don’t work out, are you willing to go back to school?


>>Should I major in something practical, or in something I love?


>>How I chose my major: My mistakes, your lessons