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What should my major and minor be?

I want to go into psychology but I’m not sure what would help me

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Subject: Career question for you

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Dami (Jenny)’s Answer

I recommend concentrating on tasks that you both enjoy and excel at. It's perfectly fine to be uncertain, but having some direction (such as whether you prefer words, numbers, or images; working solo or in groups; interacting with people or utilizing technology) can be beneficial. Next, consider the potential career paths available to you before choosing a major. Speak with individuals who have the career you desire (for example, a psychologist) and determine if they recommend it or how they would have done things differently. A balanced approach of following your passions and being practical/aware of each career's implications will pave the way for success!
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Robert’s Answer

Hi Amelia,

At the start, it's completely fine if you're unsure about your future career path. However, I encourage you to select a major that truly sparks your interest. Don't worry if you're not already skilled in that area or lack experience – that's what college is designed for! Ultimately, aim to choose a major and/or minor in a field that you'd be excited to work in every day after graduation. Remember, your degree in a particular subject may not define your entire career, but it will serve as a valuable stepping stone. If psychology is what ignites your passion, then I recommend you go for it!
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Jaime’s Answer

Hey Amelia! It's a great idea to keep an open mind and try out various classes that catch your interest. Chat with your classmates about their experiences, and remember that the career services office is there to help you! I scheduled a meeting during my sophomore year, and discussing my likes, dislikes, career aspirations, and personal objectives really helped me find the right path. I eventually changed my major from Computer Science to Accounting, which suited my strengths better and led me to a fulfilling career (I've been with the same company for 5 years now)! However, always remember that your major isn't everything – stay active in other campus organizations and concentrate on being a well-rounded person, and you'll achieve great things! Don't worry – you can do it!
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Colin’s Answer

I always suggest that people consider adding a minor to their studies, as it can be tailored for professional growth or pursuing a passion. I understand that choosing a minor can be challenging, and if you're unsure, I recommend going for a writing minor. Writing is a valuable skill, regardless of your chosen field.

Often, people might say, "I don't like writing" or "I'm not good at writing." But that's the beauty of the minor – it helps you become a better writer! That's what happened to me. I used to struggle with writing, but the minor taught me so much. Plus, my minor focused on professional writing, so I learned about crafting resumes, cover letters, interviewing, and more!

I'm delighted I made the decision to pursue a writing minor. At my school, there were various options, such as creative, journalism, or professional writing. There's something for everyone!
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T.J.’s Answer

Hello Amelia!

I think your major depends on your career goals, or what you hope to do within psychology.

If your hoping to practice psychology, you'll need to get a Master's degree after completing your Bachelor's degree. You can enter a Master's program for Social Work with a psychology degree, or a social work degree (commonly called a BSW).
Whichever you choose, I recommend you get as much work experience with people as possible. That way, when you apply for grad school, you can meet their expectations. Often, grad school programs for counseling want students with strong social experiences, either through volunteering or mentorship with helping people.

If you're hoping to research in psychology, you may want to seek out a neuroscience major or a science-lab based psychology major. Then, apply for a Master's program (based on your research goals). It's important to get undergraduate research experience and hands-on experience if you're going this path.

For minors, you can pick a subject that adds to your professional goals, or something you'll enjoy learning about.
- Some minors that could help you practice psychology as a career are Spanish or Sociology.
- Some minors that could help you with researching in psychology are either a natural science subject - Chemistry, Biology, etc, Political Science, or Statistics.

Sending you support as you decide on what to study for psychology :)
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Michael’s Answer

Who do you know that is in psychology? What opportunities exist in your area that would let you either interview people currently in that field AND are there opportunities to shadow those that are doing it? It is definitely great to get someone's verbal feedback of what it is like and what you should do. However, nothing beats hands on experience. It will shed a light on the day to day and also give you an idea of where you can take your career and extracurriculars to pursue that will compliment your education in the field.

Michael recommends the following next steps:

Talk to those you know in the field
Research and find companies/people near you that are in your area of interest. Contact and ask to set up time with them to learn more
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Meagan’s Answer

Psychology is a truly fascinating field to explore! You'll discover that in many professions, having a grasp on human emotions and the workings of the mind is crucial. Psychology is quite specialized, and if you aspire to be a psychologist, you'll need to pursue a master's degree. To advance even further, you might even need a PhD, depending on the job you desire and the education it requires. If you're still undecided about your major and psychology piques your interest, you might find that other majors/minors also appeal to you, as they involve understanding human emotions too. The possibilities are endless! Fields such as business, sales, consulting, finance, teaching, management, and event planning all require some level of emotional comprehension. Identifying emotions and the reasons behind actions is a skill I use daily in my event management job. I recommend taking a few psychology courses and exploring job opportunities online to see what's available before settling on a major.
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