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Is switching majors in college okay?

Hello, I hear of a lot of people who switch majors in college. I have also heard that this isn't necessarily a bad thing, but I would also like to hear from someone who has switched majors before, and ask if they thought it was the right thing to do. If so, when is it appropriate to do so and when is the sort of cut-off to know what you want to do. #major #college #college-major #college-advice

Thank you comment icon Hi! I've switched majors and added a second major while in college! It's definitely common to do, especially during your first two years at college. It helps to go in open-minded about switching majors, especially because you may take a really interesting General Education course during your freshman or sophomore year that you want to further explore! Your advisors are also a great resource for giving advice and letting you know what requirements you have to fulfill. It also depends on what major you want to switch to/from, since some colleges have separate schools for engineering or fine arts that have additional requirements. erica
Thank you comment icon Hi! I have multiple friends who switched majors in college. You don't technically fall behind because a lot of the courses you can get credit for in each major. Please choose a major that you enjoy and don't be afraid to switch! I actually recommend it if you enjoy something else. Yumna Khan

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Brock’s Answer

Switching majors is totally okay and can sometimes help set you up for success. I switched my major in college over the Summer before my junior year from Entrepreneurship to Sociology. I started out in business school because I thought I really wanted to start a business, but as I progressed on that track, I realized I wasn't very interested in the required courses, specifically accounting. Before I switched, I had the chance to take an Intro to Sociology class that I really enjoyed. I started becoming more interested in Sociology, so I spoke with my counselor about the pros and cons of switching my major. Together, we decided the pros outweighed the cons, and I made the switch shortly after that conversation. In retrospect, that was one of the best decisions I ever made. I made the switch early enough in my college career that it didn't set me too far back on the path to graduation, and I ended up loving my sociology courses. It's always easier to stay dedicated when you enjoy what you do, and I found myself studying more and thriving. My advice would be to consider why you want to switch and discuss those reasons with your peers, family and school counselor. They may offer insight you hadn't thought of. If you do decide to switch, try to make that decision as early in your college career as possible. I hope this helps and good luck!
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Laura’s Answer

Hi Ingrid! Great question, I switched my major not once but THREE times and while I did end up spending more on tuition and delayed my graduation date by a year - I am glad with the outcome. At first, I thought I wanted to be a journalist - I took one journalism course at my local community college and quickly realized that was not a path for me. Then I thought I wanted to be a interior designer, so I connected with two great interior designers in my community and shadowed them around. I thought their work was fascinating but after taking a course at the same community college (while taking the other general pre-req courses) I realized that I really wanted a 4-year degree and at the time, my university wasn't offer a Bachelors in interior design. Then it came time to take my Comms general re-req course and the professor assigned us a project on environmental conservation and I was hooked! I wanted to know everything there was about sustainability and how to find creative solutions to help solve some of our worlds most complex environmental challenges. This led me to taking an elective in my university's environmental sustainability program, and I quickly got clarity on what I wanted to do professionally. Several years later, I've worked at an international environmental conservation NGO where I've been able to travel to the U.K., Iceland, Mexico, Uganda, Poland, and Costa Rica for work. I've also have been able to advance environmental and social responsibility at three amazing for-profit organizations. All of this is to say, explore! During your first years, if possible, take an elective of a topic you think you might be interested in. Speak with the teacher assistants and ask if you could learn more about their academic background and interests. Be curious but kind to yourself as you explore what major would be a good fit for you!!
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Madi’s Answer

Hi Ingrid,

While I did not switch majors, I do know a lot of people that have done so. It is absolutely okay to switch majors as college is meant to be the place where you find out what career you want to be in. It is fine if you take classes and decide that the field of study that you chose is not the one you want to remain in.

Good luck!
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Daniel’s Answer

Hi Ingrid! Not only is switching majors okay, but you should definitely consider it a viable option if that's really what you want to do! I regret not changing or adjusting my major sooner while in undergrad, so take this advice and really consider all of your options and what you want to do with your future. It can be scary , but it might be the best decision you'll ever make.
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Aastha’s Answer

Hey! I agree with the answers here that switching majors in college is not bad at all! College is about finding yourself and seeing what you like and with that, what you don’t like. Switching majors is very common I’ve seen many many students do it in my four years here. It helps you figure out who you are, what you like, and build a passion!
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Yasemin’s Answer

Hi Ingrid! It's perfectly fine to switch majors, one of my classmates did, she was a chemistry major then went to economics. Interests can change in college so I wouldn't worry too much, in fact for the first 2 years you can be an undecided major and just take the required general education courses along with other courses you might be interested. You can also join clubs/organizations as these may give you a better perspective on what you'd like to do. One thing to note is that I believe in the first 2 years it is easier to switch majors but in junior year it may be harder as credits add up and you are closer to graduating. It can still be done but it may delay graduation by an additional year or more, this isn't necessarily negative but something to consider especially for financial reasons. I would definitely keep in touch with your adviser about this as well and keep on track by making schedules on courses to take. I hope this helps!

Best of luck!
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Zahid’s Answer

In the United States, colleges and universities are often discussed interchangeably with little to no realization of the difference between them. In general -- and, of course, there are exceptions -- colleges only offer and focus on undergraduate programs. While a four-year school may offer Bachelor's degrees, many community and junior colleges only offer two-year or Associate's degrees. Some colleges do offer graduate studies as well.

While you can say college or university, it's important to know the difference before answering this question. My answer below pertains to being in a university. The first two years of your college is taking general education classes as required to 'broaden your horizon'. The last 2 years you apply to the college of your major. So if you are doing computer science then you apply to that college, if business then college of business, and so forth.

I switched majors about five times. Since I wasn't sure what to major in starting out, I focused on taking general education classes only and getting those out of the way while I gave more thought to what I wanted to do. In that time, I also took a class of the majors I was interested in, such as intro to computer engineering, intro to computer science, etc. You can afford to switch your major in the first 2 years without falling back or it getting costly, but after that you would end up taking classes that you will either drop or just not need anymore since you changed your major.

Instead of wasting time and money, it's much easier today to explore your options. YT is a big big resource in finding out what people of different majors do. So is the internet. I would make list of things that you like or don't like and the fields that would interest you. For example, do you like animals (great!) but could see your self working with them for rest of your life? Do you cooking? do you like computer stuff? are you an introvert or extrovert? Do you want to be in a male dominated field or female? how much many do you want to make per year? etc.

Also, research what jobs will be in demand next 10-20 years. Good Luck!

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Danielle’s Answer

Hi Ingrid! I am here to tell you that switching majors is ok! I felt very overwhelmed picking a major as a freshman especially since I had interests in many subjects. You may be thinking the same thing. However, try to pick a major that is interesting to you, or something that you are passionate about and see yourself in that field long term. When in college, don’t be afraid to ask questions about a job that interests you. Meet with your school counselor often, as they are great resources for networking, career preparation and overall help. I would take advantage of career fairs, as this is a great opportunity to explore different fields and can help you network with many professionals.
Speaking from experience, I attended 3 different colleges and switched my major several times. So, it is ok to switch majors however, I wouldn’t recommend switching more than once. It’s best to limit changing majors so that you can graduate on time.
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Alex’s Answer

YES, absolutely!! I switched majors in college. I started out as a Kinesiology major. I ended up getting my AA in Liberal Arts and BS in Finance. It was definitely the right choice for me at the time and if you feel you would like to switch, go for it! Each major has its own requirements so I found it was easier to switch before I started taking upper level courses that are for your major so you don't have to take too many additional courses.
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