College How-to: Choosing a Major

News flash: you don’t need to choose a major before you attend college. Granted, everyone you speak with about college will ask you what you plan on studying. However, going in undecided is okay. That being said, there are some steps to take to choose a major, or at least scratch some options off your list.


  • Keep track of your interests. Is your psychology class fascinating to you? Do you have a knack for foreign languages? Does that calculus lesson put you to sleep? These are important questions to ask yourself when thinking about a major. If you have your heart set on being a journalist but you hate writing, perhaps you should reconsider. For my fellow undecided students out there, if, at the end of the day, your observed interests get you no closer to choosing a path, don’t worry. Keeping your interests in the back of your mind will help you know what to explore when it’s time to sign up for classes.
  • Be prepared to change your mind. Here’s a statistic for you: 60 percent of college students change their major. In fact, many switch majors multiple times. So once you choose your major, and if you already have, you’re not boxed in. Most colleges will not require you to even declare a major until the second semester of your sophomore year, therefore, you’ll have three semesters to explore.
  • Recognize the exceptions. Some majors, such as engineering or nursing, require college freshman to jump right in with their studies. That means if you start out with one of these majors, you can by all means exit these programs if you change your mind, but they are difficult to switch into.



Choosing a major is important, yes, but don’t freak out if you’re unsure. College is the perfect place to streamline your interests into a major and eventual career. For now, just relax.