Gone are the days when students entered college with a declared major and graduated within the same program four years later. Changing majors has become common, and “Super Seniors” in their fifth year of college are nearly the norm. So, if you came to college with a plan and are beginning to question whether you’re on the right path, you are not alone. But how do you make the decision to change majors?
Struggling in Courses
Classes should be a little bit of a challenge; otherwise you wouldn’t be learning anything and classes would be a complete waste of time. It’s natural to have questions and need a bit of assistance now and then. But if you’re struggling every day and consistently getting poor marks in your core classes, it may be a sign that you don’t quite have the skills necessary. Keep in mind, this isn’t a decision you should try to make after one core course. Sometimes a particular course is indeed challenging, or the way a professor teaches just isn’t getting through to you. Likewise, if you’re willing to put in the extra work to go to study sessions, get a tutor, and speak with your professor to acquire the skills you need, by all means, do that and stick with your program! But if you’re feeling discouraged by your grades, considering a change in major is another option.
Disinterested in Courses
If you find yourself ready to fall asleep in all of your core classes because they’re just not stimulating your interests, it may be time to evaluate what is going on. If you’re bored because you’ve already learned the material or you’re simply a quick learner, you may want to stick it out. But if you’re bored because the courses have no appeal to you, you may want to take some time to think about whether or not you really want to be working in that field.
Disconnect between Major and Career Choice
There are times when the major you selected doesn’t quite match up with the career you want in the way you thought it did. Other times, you’re interest in your courses remains, but your overall career goals change, necessitating a change in major. When you notice a disconnect, it’s a good idea to speak with your academic advisor to clarify questions and move in the right direction.
Determining the right time to change one’s major is a very personal thing. While the factors listed above are some of the big ones, you need to listen to your head and your heart when it comes to life changing decisions. If you’re at a point where you’re considering a big change, be sure to do your research. Ask plenty of questions from others in your current major and the majors you may be considering. Talk to advisors and those who are currently in the field. Look through course catalogs and program websites. Pray if that suits your life style. And when you’ve exhausted all your resources, weigh your options carefully. And remember, you can always change back.