Resources for students exploring majors

Too often students consider themselves an "undecided major", when a better description of the student's status is "exploring majors". Students need to take an active role in deciding upon a major and shouldn't put this decision off! The following steps can help guide you through the decision making process and the resources listed can assist you in investigating your options.

Step 1.

Define the decision you need to make and determine your alternatives. Have you been able to narrow your options down to a few possible majors, or are you unsure of your options? If you are considering numerous majors your first decision should be to narrow your options to two or three possible majors.

Step 2.

Obtain sufficient information about each major so you can make a knowledgeable decision. Resources to help you gather information are below.

Career Development Center The website has information you can browse including career opportunities that exist within various majors. You can also go to the CDC (350 MHC) to research careers in their Resource Center or you can sign up to take an interest inventory and have a counselor interpret your results. The CDC also surveys alumni to get information on employment status, employment organization and salary. View their post-graduation survey here.  

Department Chairs - A great resource for learning more about majors are department chairs and faculty; see individual department websites for information on current faculty chairs and to make an appointment to talk about requirements for the major and what students do upon graduation.

Major field guides - This comprehensive list of majors will give you a suggested order for sequencing courses within a particular major over the span of four years. 

Occupational Outlook Handbook Investigate careers, job outlooks, average salaries, and skills necessary for a variety of careers.

Step 3.

Evaluate your alternatives in light of the information you have gathered, and make the decision that is best for you. Rank your options in terms of values most important to you (such as work environment, potential salary, lifestyle, etc).

Step 4.

Make a plan. Officially declare your major and plan the classes you will need to graduate. Stop by Academic Counseling in 119 O'Shaughnessy Education Center to obtain a major declaration form.  If you are pursuing a major in business administration, visit the Opus College of Business in 128 McNeely Hall.