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How important is your major when applying to colleges?

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Is it okay to apply #undecided? Did you switch you major in college and was it hard to do? #college #college-major #job #major #college-applications #application

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Jared’s Answer

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That's actually three good questions. I'll take each in turn:


1 - How important is your major when applying to colleges?


Actually pretty important. It determines what pool of applicants you'll be competing with. A very popular major at a very desireable school with very few slots available for that department is going to be much more competitive than a major that the school wants more people to apply for. Unfortunately, the competitiveness of each major is school-dependent, so you can't draw many generalities. A second thing that's relevant here is to note that whatever major you choose, your application still has to have some consistency to it. So if you spend all your time doing in the great outdoors hiking, you're going to have a hard time creating a compelling application that is all about getting ready for a future as a lawyer. Same goes for declaring pre-med and having poor science scores. So you might have an incentive to pick a major that is less competitive, but you also need to make sure that you don't pick a major that is so unrelated to your passions and accomplishments that you are unable to weave together a consistent narrative.


2 - Is it okay to apply undecided?


Happens all the time, but I don't recommend it for the reasons mentioned above.


3 - Did you switch you major in college and was it hard to do?


I switched my major three times in college. It was easy to do at the beginning. At some point, it was hard to change my major for two reasons. First, some academic departments don't let you change your major into their department once you pass a certain point (e.g., after sophomore year). That's to prevent you from failing to graduate on time. Second, I paid a price for my indecision and late-switching in that I had to work like crazy in Junior and Senior year in order to catch up on all of the required credits my department required in order for me to finish with the major I ultimately selected. Not only that, but when I hit the job market, I was competing against my peers who had been training for four years to work in finance, whereas I'd only had about two years time to train for the job market. I had to bust my butt to make it happen. I studied until midnight, slept in the study rooms, and then studied in the morning when the sun came up. All because I was behind the curve due to my indecision. In the end I did succeed in getting a great job, but it was pretty tense for a while there.

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Daniela’s Answer

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Mitra!!


I got a good article about this issue. Take a look in what some specialist think about this:


Many schools offer hundreds of choices, and it is a challenge to pick one when it feels like the rest of your adult life is riding on that choice. It is a big commitment, but it's not a life sentence: Many graduates pursue careers that aren't directly related to their college majors, or change careers after several years.


The major you choose will neither predict nor guarantee your future. Many graduates find jobs that have nothing to do with what they studied in college. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the average twenty–something switches jobs once every three years and the average person changes career fields two or three times in their lifetime. Have no fear that choosing a college major will lock you into a specific career for the rest of your life.


If you are interested in a major that requires a lot of classes, or classes that are limited to students in that major, then it is better to declare early. Some majors demand a strictly regimented order of courses, and if you fall behind, you may have to extend your college stay for a semester (or two or four).


Some students choose a major because it will prepare them for a specific career path or advanced study. Maybe you already know that you want to be a nurse, a day trader, a physical therapist, or a web developer. Before you declare, take a class or two in the relevant discipline, check out the syllabus for an advanced seminar, and talk to students in the department of your choice—make sure that you can and will do the coursework required for the career of your dreams.


Some students choose a major simply because they love the subject matter. If you love what you're studying, you're more likely to fully engage with your classes and college experience, and that can mean better grades and great relationships with others in your field.


Can I change my mind?
Definitely. One of the most exciting aspects of college life is that it introduces you to new subjects and fosters new passions. You might enter undergrad enjoying physics but discover a burgeoning love for political science.


Source: http://www.princetonreview.com/college-advice/choosing-college-majors


Don´t worry. Analyze calmly the options, and good studies!

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Rachel’s Answer

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<span style="background-color: transparent;">Collegeboard.org is a great resource for this! I poured through the pages of universities all over the U.S. when I was a senior in high school. Collegeboard was my go-to site! They put all of the information in one place and it is very easy to use. They even have various filters you can apply to see only colleges that have programs you are interested. To determine academic rigor, look at the admissions requirements, G.P.A. of past admitted applicants, SAT/ACT scores, class rank etc. This will give you an idea of what scores and grades you need to be accepted. However, don't be discouraged your application will be reviewed based on the full picture! College-board will help you get an idea of what is most important to the specific school you are applying to.</span>


This professional recommends the following next steps:

  • <span style="background-color: transparent;">Chat with your Guidance Counselor</span>
  • <span style="background-color: transparent;">Create a Collegeboard.org account</span>
  • <span style="background-color: transparent;">Start using CollegeBoard as a resource to look up schools.</span>


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