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How do I find out what college is best for me if I don't know what I'm going to major in?

A good way to know which college is the best choice for you is to know what major you're going into. Since I am still unsure, I don't know whether or not the college I choose will end up being the best choice for my future career when I decide, help?

#college #career #major

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Alice Foster’s Answer

I concur with John! One of the ways that college can help prepare you for your career is to help you explore what that might be. Don’t be concerned that you don’t know what your major will be from Day 1, because many students don’t. As long as you choose a school with a broad range of offerings, you can take advantage of core requirement coursework and electives to learn more about different areas of interest before you declare a major. (Work with your academic advisor, though, to be sure that you understand graduation requirements and still graduate within four years to keep costs down.)


You have already received some great advice here on choosing a school, but I would also suggest that you visit campuses personally, if possible. Websites and school brochures can provide very useful information on school resources and mission, but part of how you feel about a school is just “chemistry” that’s different for everyone. Generally getting a feel for the place—and I have offered some tips below on how to do that—will help you determine whether it may be a good fit for you. 

Alice Foster recommends the following next steps:

If cost or geography prohibits you from visiting your top school choices, try to schedule a travel day to an area nearest you where you can see 2-4 different types of schools for reference. Even schools with similar characteristics will have different environments so you can’t evaluate a specific school by visiting one with similar stats elsewhere, but this can at least tell you whether you feel more suited to an urban or rural setting, or a small or large student population, which is a great starting point.
You are more likely to thrive in an environment where you feel comfortable and become engaged, so try to visit the campuses of schools that you are interested in. Take the student-guided tour and take advantage of the walking time between presentations to ask the student candid questions about campus and academic life that you won’t find on the website. Pay attention to what is posted on the school bulletin boards and pick up a copy of the student newspaper. Make a point of having lunch in one of the dining halls. Be generally aware of your surroundings and see if you can picture yourself in that environment.
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John’s Answer

Hey Julia,


The first, and more simple answer, is that there are a lot of schools that are "the right fit" for you. Every college has a unique experience to offer, but they all have a lot in common as well. You will find the clubs (and groups) you join and people you meet will be what you remember most about college when it is all said and done.


The second answer is to re-frame the question. If you aren't sure about what you want to study then maybe think about what you want to experience. Do you prefer city life or something more like a traditional campus? Do you want to be close or far from home? Do you want a large school or a small school? Are things like a diverse student body or acclaimed faculty important to you?


If you start asking questions about the environment, and match that up with your test scores and transcript the decision can become more clear. There are no right answers here, and again, there are a number of different schools you can have a great experience at.


Also, don't worry about picking a major right away or figuring out what you want to do too soon. I switched majors 7 times in college and now I work at Google!

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