How to Find and Compare Potential Majors
The most important part of selecting a major is choosing something you're interested in and find valuable (check out this article about discovering yourself which can help you figure out what you're passionate about!) 🤩 At many schools, you do not officially select your major until your sophomore year of college. However, when applying to college, you most likely will have to choose an intended major. In larger universities, you may have to apply to a certain school within the university, such as engineering or business. There are different acceptance rates for each college, so it is important to do your research 🧐 In other universities, majors are not split up by different schools, but your major will fall under a specific department (i.e., Psychology Majors will be in the Psychology Department).
All in all, the major you choose should align with your current interests and activities. If you are applying to a specific school within a university, you may have to explain your aspirations 💪 and growing interest in these majors during interviews and in essays. If you have multiple interests, here are some tips:
- Show your interest in interdisciplinary learning to show intellectual curiosity.
- Apply to some schools under one major and other schools under the other major (you can also apply undeclared).
- Find universities that offer dual and/or joint degrees (i.e., joint programs in CS & business).
Use the following structure to answer some questions about the majors you're interested in, finding the one that fits you best! And if you're undecided by the time you apply to college, that's okay too!
Introduction to Finding Majors of Interest 💡
Answer the following questions to get started:
- Where do your interests lie? Are there certain majors that involve those interests?
- What are your strengths? Are there certain subjects that are your strong suit?
- What are your dream careers? Which majors did people in those careers study?
- (If you don't have a dream career, consider what you want in the future. Is it a job in the healthcare field? A job with lots of traveling? A job where you can have your own office?)
- What are your dream schools, and what programs attract you to those schools? Are there comparable programs at other schools?
- (If you don't have a dream school, don't worry! Skip this question or do it for a school you're simply interested in).
These are just a few questions 🙋 to help you get started. Once you find the ones that you're most interested in, you can then compare based on your preferences, from return on investment (the value that you get after graduating > the costs you put in during college, both tangible and intangible) to the amount of schooling needed. It's also important to remember that not all schools offer the same majors.
- Finding majors: Florida State's Major Comparison allows you to compare 3 majors side-by-side, seeing what the major entails. Even if you do not plan to apply to Florida State, it is a helpful resource to compare majors!
- Read Big Factors to Consider when Picking a Major for more factors to consider when comparing majors.
- Read our article about discovering your major!
- Read our article about choosing your college major!
- Majors Quiz: Arizona State's major and career quiz allows you to find majors that fit your interests! It's a great way to get an idea of what you might want to major in.
My Major Comparison Chart 📊
🐎 Let's get started! Think about additional questions if you have other factors to consider.