Life and Style

College 101: How to Choose a Major: A Guide for the Undecided High School Senior

The senior year of high school is an exciting time. You’re the head of the school and get to look forward to big events like prom and senior skip day. Plus, you have the excitement of applying for colleges and planning your future. While this is an exciting time, making all these big life decisions can be stressful.

Perhaps you’re a senior and you’re still unsure of what you’d like to study in college. Not to worry. It may seem like you have to decide now, but you have time to explore your interests and skills and decide on a perfect major for yourself. With thousands of majors and universities across the country, there is a perfect fit out there for you. Follow along with this guide to finding a college major for undecided seniors to help find the right path for you.

Photo Courtesy of Scholarship Media

Don’t Stress

Before we get started, here is a reminder that your indecision doesn’t have to stress you out. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed deciding on the place you’re going to learn and grow in for the next four years. It can be even more overwhelming when you don’t even know what you want to go to college for. 

You’re not alone. Up to 50% of students enter college undecided, and an even higher percentage may end up changing their major. Remember, you’re young and it’s okay to still be exploring. Approach this process with an open mind and an open heart, you’ll find the best results.

Ask The Right Questions

When students decide on a major, they often forget to take important factors into account. To find the perfect major, you have to be asking the right questions. Don’t just pick a school and a program because they’re trendy or because everyone else from your private Catholic high school in Holmdel, NJ are following the same path. This is a chance to explore your passions and aptitudes to find a career path fit for you. 


What are your strengths and abilities? 

Every job requires different skills. Teachers need to be patient, actuaries need to like numbers, artists need to be creative, etc. So start by deciphering what you’re good at. You have talents and strengths that fit in well with certain college programs and career paths. Start with listing your abilities and researching areas where those skills would be beneficial. 

What are your interests? 

If you’re trying to decide what to do for the rest of your life, you might as well find something interesting to do. If you like creating content for digital platforms or watching the numbers on Wall Street, then check out college degrees for graphic design or finance. Passion should decide what you want to do, not be an afterthought or added perk. 

Where to they converge? 

Once you’ve determined your passions and skills, it’s time to find common ground between the two. Let’s look at an example. Say you’re passionate about science subjects and helping people, and you’re skilled in time management, communication, critical thinking, and attention to detail. According to CollegeCliffs, a degree in nursing may be perfect for you. This site gives you detailed descriptions of career paths for a wide range of majors. This allows you to find information on colleges and majors that fit your interests and skills. If you’re exploring the right path for you, use the best tools to do so. 

Economic Factors 

Some people base their decision about college education on economic factors. If your future earning potential is important to you, that should be taken into account when you choose a major. Top salaried positions are usually within architecture, STEM, medical, and business fields. While a certain level within any career can bring you a high income, these fields have the greatest chance to get you there quickly.

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