What is a Major?
- A major is an organized group of courses associated with a specific field such as art, history, or science. Courses in the major are required for graduation. By declaring a major, students are agreeing to complete certain classes and if they meet all the requirements for the major they receive a college degree.
- Many students begin college without a major. It’s also common for students to change their minds and switch majors several times.
- Choosing a major is a process, not a quick random decision. Knowing the steps in the process will give you the skills you need to choose a major and a career direction. You will repeat these steps many times over the years as your interests and needs change.
Step 1: Self Assessment. Know about yourself.
Think about your personality, likes, dislikes, values, talents, and goals. Consider the courses you've done well in previously and enjoyed. Take a career interest inventory to clarify your personality type and preferred work environments.
Step 2: Exploration. Research careers and majors in which you’re interested.
Be sure you know this information before you decide on your major:
- Find out the educational requirements for majors you’re considering and decide if you are willing to spend the required amount of time and money.
- Consider the salary levels of jobs associated with majors. Think about the type of lifestyle you want and if the salaries of different careers will support your preferred lifestyle. Unsure how much income you’ll need? Go to www.texasrealitycheck.com to find out.
- Find out about the job growth of the career that interests you. What’s the job outlook? Is it a growing or declining career field?
- How competitive is it to find jobs in the field? Will it be easy or difficult to break into the career?
There are many excellent websites for researching careers. Start with http://online.onetcenter.org.
The Career Center (C237B) and libraries have books and resources with career and college major information. Look in the college catalog and read descriptions of the courses in different departments to see if they interest you.
Step 3: Get Some Experience.
- Volunteer, get a part-time job, summer job, or do an internship to get a feel for the career environment and for the kinds of jobs you could get with different majors.
- Join student clubs and organizations at Eastfield. Visit the Office of Student Life in C141 to find out more. It’s fun and looks good on your résumé!
Step 4: Make a Decision.
- Look at all your career and major options and narrow your choices. Choose the career and major that is most interesting to you and that will provide the income you’ll need for the lifestyle you want.
- File your degree plan in the Admissions Office if you decide on an Associate’s Degree.
- Talk with your Academic Advisor to plan which classes you need to take for your major.