Choosing a Major
Choosing a major can be stressful with so many choices. There are 3 concrete steps that you can take to simplify the process:
- Know what employers and graduate/professional schools care about:
- Skills: Many employers are “major agnostic”: they are not looking for a specific major but rather transferable skills
- Academic achievement: major in a field that you are interested in to maximize your performance in that major
- Experience: gain experience through internships, student groups, and class projects to show employers that you have used your skills successfully
- Narrow down your possibilities
- Use the following ideas/resources to gather information about majors:
Research Careers by Major
- Career Paths by Majors
- NCA Post-Graduation Survey
- From the Northwestern University page in LinkedIn, select "alumni" and then search by major
Explore Major Requirements
- Can you finish in 4 years?
- Consider what else you want to accomplish, e.g. study abroad, fellowships, etc.
- Read through course descriptions
- Do enough courses interest you enough to commit?
- Take a class
- Most majors have classes available for non-majors
- Talk with academic advisors and upperclassmen
- Non-majors can speak to academic majors from different schools