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Major Exploration

Exploring and choosing a major involves many factors. Let's break it down.

Feeling uncertain?

Choosing a major and/or minor can be scary, but it doesn't have to be! Below are some frequently asked questions and their answers to get you started.

Keep Reading to Learn:

  • Making a decision may take some time
  • Who can help
  • How to declare my major

When do I have to make a decision about my major? 

There is no real deadline for choosing a major, but changing or choosing after your Junior year may lead to some changes in your 4-year plan and a little extra time at St. Thomas. Academic Counseling advises that a good time to plan on choosing is the Spring of your second year.

Is it bad to be “undecided?” 

No! Being undecided means you have an opportunity to explore your options and discover degree programs you may not have thought of before. It's okay to not know what you want to major in right away - there's a good chance you would've ended up changing your mind anyway!

Where can I get help choosing my major? 

The Career Development Center is happy to help you evaluate your interests, values, skills, personality, attributes, preferences and how they relate to various majors and career paths. If you have questions about a 4-year plan, connecting with Faculty, navigating Core or FYEX requirements, transfer credits or anything academically related, visit Academic Counseling!

What courses should I take while I am “undecided?" 

You should take required Core Curriculum courses and take exploratory courses that might help you make a decision about your major. Taking Core requirements will give you some time to choose your major while staying on track for graduation.

Will being undecided delay my graduation? 

It all depends on how your credits fit into the major degree plan you ultimately choose. As mentioned above, taking Core requirements first certainly gives you some time to explore, but choosing or changing after your second year could have an impact on your 4-year plan.

How are majors related to career paths? 

Each major at St. Thomas can lead to a wide variety of career choices. Oftentimes, a major doesn't predict the kind of job or career a person will pursue after graduation! Majors in the liberal arts can help you develop many essential transferable skills, and if you want to be an engineer, doctor, or biologist, there are majors that lead to those professions as well. Any major can have traditional and non-traditional career paths associated with it, so you shouldn't ever feel like choosing a major means you're choosing a forever career!

Should I have a minor? 

Choosing a minor is completely up to you. It is not required but can be an opportunity for you to showcase additional skills, or just learn more in a specific subject area without majoring in it. Minors can be both practical AND fun!

How do I declare my major/minor? 

The process of declaring a major and/or minor can all be done online now. The link to the Registrar's website is below!

New Steps

  • Schedule an appointment with Career Development and Academic Counseling to converse further
  • Reference the Related Links section for additional resources to use as you explore majors and minors at UST