Find The Perfect Major With These Strategies

Explore interests and use resources to find your path
By UW Colleges

Attending college is a formative experience for any student. You'll choose your classes, get involved on campus and learn plenty of new things. The college experience requires you make important decisions and grow as a person. Perhaps the most important decision for any student? Choosing a major. 

UW Colleges offers students a start on hundreds of majors from chemistry to psychology. So while you won't be limited in what you can study, it might be tough deciding exactly what subject you'd like to pursue. There are plenty of resources available to help you on your way and campus advisors are a great place to start. Here are a couple tips for finding the right major for you:

1. Take a class in a subject that interests you

This is possibly the easiest and most popular way for students to figure out what they want to major in. Do you think you want to be a nurse? Take some biology, chemistry and physiology classes. Maybe you're interested in a business degree? Check out some accounting, management and communications classes. With 20 departments and hundreds of classes available, you can explore a variety of interests at UW Colleges.

Students in class listening to lecture

2. Talk about it with your professor or advisor

Faculty and staff members at every UW Colleges campus are committed to your success. Professors can give you an idea of careers in your field of interest and talk about what it takes to get there. Advisors can help you plan your classes depending on your interest, and connect you to resources to help you figure out the major for you.

Advisor and student sitting at a desk looking at a paper

3. Use online assessments

If you're not sure how to turn your interests into a major and then a career, online assessment tools are a great place to get started. Use services like MajorMania to explore available majors at UW Colleges and other schools. Other resources like Career Locker show how majors and careers fit together, and O*Net's Interest Profiler can give you an idea of how your interests can lead to a career. 

Advisor helping student with computer program

4. Connect with someone in your field of interest

A great way to find out if you want to major in a certain subject, or pursue a career in a specific field, is to connect with someone doing a job you want to do. These professionals can give you advice on how to get where they are, share their own experiences in the field and may even give you a chance to shadow them at work. If you're not sure where to start, campus advisors are a great resource for figuring out how to connect with someone in your field of interest.

Student and professor examine a flower

5. Consider job prospects of potential majors

College is equal parts following your passion and preparing for a career that will reward your hard work. Finding out how to balance your interests and a career that pays can be tricky, but high demand fields like health care, engineering and computer sciences can be a good place to start. The Bureau of Labor Statistics also provides outlook information for  hundreds of occupations to give you an idea of jobs that will be needed in the future.

Students point out physiological attributes of a model

Faculty and staff at UW Colleges take pride in helping students find success in and out of the classroom. Whether you plan to earn an associate degree, take advantage of guaranteed transfer or pursue a collaborative degree, we can help you figure out the major that works for you. So what are you waiting for?