Archive for the ‘Majors and Minors’ Category
For high school students whittling down their college wish-lists, its important to research schools based on their reputation for specific programs. While you don’t have to know for certain what your major will be, if you have a strong inclination to veer in one direction, follow your gut! If that direction happens to be education, take a look at the 10 best undergraduate schools for education programs in the United States, according to the U.S. News & World Report.
Dartmouth College (Hanover, NH)
- Students enrolled: 6,141
- Application deadline: January 1st
- Tuition: $41,736
- Fun Fact: Dartmouth is home to the oldest and biggest collegiate Outing Club in the country. The Outing Club offers outdoor excursions and courses to adventure-seeking students.
Princeton University (Princeton, NJ)
- Students enrolled: 7,724
- Application deadline: January 1st
- Tuition: $37,000
- Fun Fact: All undergraduate students are required to write a senior thesis.
Miami University – Oxford (Oxford, OH)
- Students enrolled: 17,472
- Application deadline: February 1st
- Tuition: $10,880 (in-state), $26,052 (out-of-state)
- Fun Fact: 30% of the student body is involved with Greek Life and the school has been referred to as the “Mother of Fraternities”.
Brown University (Providence, RI)
- Students enrolled: 8,705
- Application deadline: January 1st
- Tuition: $41,328
- Fun Fact: All students are required to live on campus for their first six semesters.
Yale University (New Haven, CT)
- Students enrolled: 11,701
- Application deadline: December 31st
- Tuition: $40,500
- Fun Fact: Yale is also widely regarded for it’s drama and music programs. All students belong to one of twelve residential colleges.
College of William and Mary (Williamsburg, VA)
- Students enrolled: 8,000
- Application deadline: January 1st
- Tuition: $8,270 (in-state), $30,547 (out-of-state)
- Fun Fact: Located in the historic town of Williamsburg, this school is the second oldest in the country!
University of Michigan – Ann Arbor (Ann Arbor, MI)
- Students enrolled: 41,924
- Application deadline: February 1st
- Tuition: $12,440 (in-state), $37,588 (out-of-state)
- Fun Fact: Located in one of the best college towns in the country, this university offers more than 900 students clubs and a rich athletic history.
Duke University (Durham, NC)
- Students enrolled: 15,016
- Application deadline: January 2nd
- Tuition: $40,665
- Fun Fact: Home of one of the top five winningest basketball programs in the country. Get ready to become a basketball fan!
University of California – Berkeley (Berkeley, CA)
- Students enrolled: 35,833
- Application deadline: November 30th
- Tuition: $11,220 (in-state), $34,098 (out-of-state)
- Fun Fact: This university is known for it’s actively political student body – particularly for liberal student groups.
University of Chicago (Chicago, IL)
- Students enrolled: 15,152
- Application deadline: January 3rd
- Tuition: $41,853
- Fun Fact: Students who live on campus (roughly 60%) are put into houses within their dorms. These houses are like tiny communities where students support one another in academics and life.
If you’re on your way to graduating college now and are interested in attending graduate school for education, check out our list of the 10 Best Graduate Schools for Education!
Majoring in business can be the road map to a great fulfilling career, and with many highly-ranked business schools in the country, you may be wondering which is right for you. U.S. News & World Report ranks undergraduate business programs every year based on a number of qualifying factors. As you are trying to figure out which business school is right for you, the most important thing you should consider is what majors are offered within the business school. Different universities offer different programs, and every track will not be offered at every university. The Top 3 business schools in the United States are in different settings across the country and offer distinctive feelings connected to the overall university.
#1: The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania
The Wharton School was the first business school in the United States and currently has the largest alumni network of business schools in the country. Wharton offers programs in accounting, actuarial science, e-commerce, entrepreneurship, finance, general management, health care administration, human resources management, insurance, international business, marketing, production/operations management, public policy, real estate and quantitative analysis/statistics ad operations research. With a bustling student body of over 9,000 undergraduate students, The Wharton School provides prestige with an exciting urban setting.
#2 The Sloan School of Management at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The Sloan School of Management courses have a global focus, offering business clubs in countries around the world. Students are global in nature and allow a number of opportunities for students to study abroad. Sloan offers programs in accounting, economics, entrepreneurship, finance, health care administration human resources management, international business, leadership, manufacturing and technology management, marketing, management information systems, production/operations management, organizational behavior, supply chain management/logistics, quantitative analysis/statistics and operations research and technology. MIT shares a hometown with Harvard University, filling the city with exceptionally bright students from all over the world.
#3 Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley
UC Berkeley is a great option for business students who also want to get involved in other aspects of life on a large university campus. The school has more than 25,000 students, 700 organizations and 55 Greek chapters. Haas offers programs in accounting, consulting, e-commerce, economics, entrepreneurship, finance, general management, health care administration, human resources management, international business, leadership, manufacturing and technology management, marketing, management information systems, not-for-profit management, production/operations management, organizational behavior, portfolio management, public administration, public policy, real estate, supply chain management/logistics, quantitative analysis/statistics and operations research and technology
While you shouldn’t pick your major solely based on what’s popular or what’s going to be in demand upon graduation, it certainly doesn’t hurt to have some knowledge about where the job market is heading! Here are the top 6 majors that are quickly increasing in popularity.
Doctors, nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists, home aids, physician’s assistants and pharmacists are all in high demand right now. Many of these positions have a high starting pay. Accelerated and flexible degree and certification programs are also an attractive incentive for college students!
As concern for the environment continues to grow, colleges and universities have found themselves creating “green” majors, or degree programs that deal with environmental issues. These majors include bioethics, food science, and horticulture. According to The Princeton Review, even degrees like fashion design and packaging are incorporating an environmental emphasis.
The computer science major has undergone something of a resurrection since the burst of the “dot-com” bubble. An article in the San Francisco Business Times dated August 3, 2012 mentions that the University of California at Berkeley saw an 87% increase from 2007 to 2011 in their computer science department. While this major continues to grow in popularity, there is much debate regarding its future need, with some believing this field will remain in high demand, and others who believe this demand has already been met.
Kinesiology, the study of human body movement, has been reported to have an increase in popularity as well. According to an article from the San Francisco Business Times, since 2008, Notre Dame saw a 160% increase and the University of California at Berkley saw a 48% increase in this field. Kinesiology can lead to careers in the sports or medical fields.
Engineers continue to be in demand, and with a high starting pay, many students find themselves interested in pursuing this route. Engineering has many different branches including civil engineering, mechanical engineering, and electrical engineering as well as combinations of these. With strong coursework in physics, math, and science, expertise in this field seems to always provide a career.
There has been a large increase in statistics majors, with the University of California at Berkeley citing it as their second fastest growing major in the last several years, per the aforementioned article. Statistics students, who have a strong background in math and specialize in processing and analyzing data, are highly useful and in demand for businesses that are joining the online community. Companies that have only recently started using Facebook fan pages and Twitter accounts need statistic majors to evaluate the new data these sites are providing to them so they can make better decisions about their digital presence.
If your major isn’t on here, don’t get discouraged! Jumping on the current trend or focusing only on the most popular majors isn’t always the best choice. If you’re good at something, and if you’re head over heels in love with it, you will have the passion and motivation it takes to find a job you like, and get paid well for it too!
Did your heart leap for joy when you read the title of this post? Deep down, are you hoping this list validates your suspicions that you need to change your major? If so, it might be time for you to make some moves! Read through these warning signs and then decide for yourself if you definitely need to switch your studies.
- You are bored. You either fall asleep in classes that pertain to your major or daydream through them and barely pay attention. You could not care less about the subject matter and the professors bore you. The uninteresting lectures never seem to improve and every class is a reminder that you are wasting your time. If you are this bored, you might want to change your major.
- You are failing. Or close to failing. In any case, you are doing terribly in your major classes. You don’t understand the subject matter or struggle with the concepts. Even after trying to work with professors or tutors, nothing really makes sense to you. If you are frustrated with how difficult the classes are, you might want to change your major.
- You chose it just to choose one. You were applying to schools and they said, “Declare!” so you declared! It was as if you closed your eyes and picked a major out of a hat. Or perhaps the only thought you gave the decision was, “English is broad. I’ll major in English.” If you are not passionate about your studies and just chose something so you’d have an answer when people asked about it, you might want to change your major.
- You browse other majors. You find yourself scrolling through your school’s website on the regular, researching other majors and growing slightly jealous of students studying exotic things like Electrical Engineering or Music Theory. You fantasize about reading American History textbooks or designing clothing for an exhibition. If you can see yourself strongly in another department and dream about it constantly, you might want to change your major.
- You chose it to please your parents. Mom and Dad said, “Pre-med!” so you declared Pre-med! Mom and Dad said, “Business!” so you declared Business! Well, Mom and Dad don’t have to go to your classes, nor are they you. You are the one who will do the work and work the job in the future, so make sure you choose a major that satisfies YOU. If you felt forced into your major, you might want to change it. Talk to your counselor about your options if you feel you need a boost in the right direction here.
- You dread working. You realize that even if you ace your major’s classes and can stay focused, you cannot stand the thought of spending your life post-graduation working in your chosen field. If you abhor all the jobs available within your major, you might want to change your major.
When deciding on a major, it is important to first assess what you are interested in and what careers are available for someone with your intended skill set. You will have many opportunities to put your studies to work in classes, jobs, and internships throughout college, which will also help you narrow down your field of study to something that you will genuinely enjoy doing after you graduate. As a freshman, if you find yourself struggling to pick a major, don’t worry! There’s still time to figure it out, and the great thing about college is that it’s pretty easy to change your major later on if you feel you may be better suited to study something else.
What Do You Like?
An easy way to preliminarily decide what you want to major in is to think about what you liked learning in high school. There are different paths available in every major from computer science to nutrition to art and design, and understanding where your general academic interests lie is a great way to narrow down the field. Once you decide what subject you’d like to explore, the major requirements you need to take will help you figure out which specific aspects of the subject most appeals to you.
Make the Most of General Requirements
Throughout college, you will need to take certain classes to fill university-wide requirements. Generally, students will need to take a combination of a foreign language, an introduction to science, a low-level math class, and one or two college writing classes in order to graduate. Though you may initially see these classes as an undesirable addition to your course load, changing your attitude and seeing them as a way to explore different majors can help you find a subject you may be drawn to that you weren’t aware of before. It is very common for students to change majors after declaring, or pick up a minor they would have never considered upon entering school. Look through the course guide and pick classes that meet requirements and afford you the opportunity to explore new interests.
Use Your Resources
College syllabi and older upperclassmen can be great resources when choosing on a major. Many professors will post required readings and assignments with the course description, allowing you to see what the workload will be like before you sign up for the class. As you decide what classes to take, explore the syllabi and see if the coursework is something that interests you. If you find yourself dreading most of the work you will have during the semester, it may be a good idea to consider looking for different tracks of study within your field, or changing your major altogether. Another great resource that is available is the peer-advising office, where you can get advice and talk to upperclassmen in your major about what they enjoy most and least about the program.
Most college students will change their major at least once, whether it be something simple, such as transferring from one branch of engineering to another, or something more drastic, such as going from a criminal justice major to an art major. While knowing what you want to do for the rest of your life comes naturally to some people, for many, it’s a struggle. Students often find themselves in majors they aren’t sure about. Here are some signs you’re in the right one.
You Geek Out Over It
When you start learning things in your lectures that completely fascinate you, and you find yourself repeating them to your friends at the dining hall, you have picked the right college major. When your professor’s door is covered with nerdy cartoons relevant to your field, and you both understand them and find them funny, you have picked the right college major. When you find yourself doing extra research on a topic just because you found it interesting, you’re in the right college major! The area you choose to study should be something you enjoy learning about.
You Think About It on Your Own Time
As a college student you are expected to take on some initiative, and to have your own motivation when it comes to pursuing your field. At some point, college will be over, and with the knowledge you are given, you will have to decide for yourself how to best apply it. Your major has to be something you actively consider even when you’re not in class. If you find yourself dwelling on a theory before you fall asleep, or thinking about what methods you could someday use in your future job, you have picked the right college major!
You Feel Successful in It
While part of choosing a college major is picking something you like, the other part is picking something you can do well enough to get a paycheck. That is, after all, the main point of going to college and finding a job. The major you choose should make you feel strong and confident. Your major should make you feel smart. Your major should make you feel as if you can accomplish anything. If dissecting a frog, building an engine, or giving a presentation makes you feel like you’re in your zone, then you have picked the right college major!
You Sometimes Don’t Like It So Much
Even if you have picked the right college major, there will be days where you sort of hate it. There will be times where you wondered if you should have picked something a little easier, or something that would make more money, or something where you didn’t have to take a particular stressful test. It’s okay to have these feelings. Just because you don’t necessarily “like” your major 100% of the time doesn’t mean you’ve picked the wrong one. Everything has peaks and valleys. The way you know you’ve picked the right major is that the next peak is right around the corner!
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Choosing a major isn’t easy.
You’ve probably heard someone say the answer is whatever you would do if you had a million dollars, but sometimes the answer isn’t nearly that simple. We don’t have a million dollars, and while many people find themselves happy in careers that are unrelated to their degree, there remains an expectation that whatever field we choose will determine how we spend our days, and how we make a living, for the rest of our lives.
That’s a pretty tough choice when you’ve only had a couple of years to truly determine what you like and what you’re good at.
As a college freshman, I was frequently tormented with this dilemma, and further annoyed with my “undeclared” label. I was (and still am) interested in everything! Having spent my high school days in choruses and musicals, I was determined not to let my love for music die. However; biology was my favorite science, and I was curious as to what I could do with my wicked memorization skills on the college level. Then again, criminal justice fascinated me, and sociology was like taking a class in everything I already think about everyday! Then there was English, my lifelong love, but after a string of less-than-great English teachers, I had lost most of my interest in writing.
Determine Your Skill Level
While many of us would love to become famous actors or professional athletes, at some point, you have to consider your skill level. In my case, while I frequently received solos and was part of the most elite musical group in my high school, I had nothing on those who were majoring in music.
Research Required Coursework
Before choosing a field, take a peek at your college catalog. What classes are required for this major? What does this major prepare you to do? Sometimes, just looking at the coursework will push you in one direction or the other. I took one look at the biology major coursework, saw the amount of practical implications, and moved on.
Research the Career
When you’ve narrowed it down to a couple different major choices, look at what careers would be available to you. Talk to real individuals who hold these jobs. Ask them what the job is like and what can prepare you for it. This might be when you realize you can’t be an environmentalist with a general science degree; rather, you’ll need an earth science degree. This might also be where you realize a particular job isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. After researching career options, I discovered that sociology and law enforcement were not majors that would lead to a job I would actually enjoy.
Get Your Feet Wet
Sometimes you won’t know if you’ve picked the right major until you get your feet wet. After declaring myself an English education major, I came to realize after the first semester that I wasn’t so crazy about the science of learning! That was something I didn’t know until I took an education class. Dabble in your interests and see how it feels!
If it turns out your college doesn’t offer the major you want, Cappex can help you search for colleges that do!
The last decade or so has proven to be nothing short of a roller-coaster of ups and downs for computer science departments at colleges and universities across the country.
According to USNews.com, the number of computer science majors has returned to and, in many cases nationally, exceeded the enrollment high-water mark previously set during the “dot-com” boom of the early 2000s. This rebirth is particularly noteworthy given that the upswing comes after enrollment numbers in 2005 were at their lowest since the early 1970s.
The report cites the strengthening economy and job market in technological fields as explanations, even in the midst of a broader economy still widely regarded as less than stellar. Further, the growing impact of social media platforms and increasingly ubiquitous mobile applications have sparked interest, as many students set sights on creating the next Facebook or Instagram.
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When choosing a major, in addition to considering what you like to do and what you’re good at, you may want to think about what you’d like your future career to be. It’s not as far away as you think! While there are majors such as elementary education that essentially spell out your career, other majors such as psychology, chemistry, sociology, history, leadership, and countless others don’t have a specific job title linked to it, so choosing a career path after graduation can be complicated and frustrating. Check out these tips that will help you create a plan so you can adequately prepare yourself for the job you want!
What Does Your Career Mean to You?
Before you start looking at majors and career options, you may benefit from defining what your career will be to you. Will you eat and breathe your job, making it your life’s work? Will your career be a passion that brings happiness to you everyday? Do you want to be home nights, weekends, and holidays? Is your job nothing more than a way to make money? Is your goal to make lots of money? What’s going to be the most important thing about your job? This will give you an idea as to what direction you need to be heading.
Choose a Career
Many will find it helpful to work backwards when it comes to picking a major. Instead of majoring in something you enjoy and then deciding what to do with it later, think about your potential job first. What do you need to get you to that job? Is there a minor, or another major you could get that would give you an advantage in the job market?
Choose a Degree
While you may not think there’s a big difference between biology, chemistry, and biochemistry, there is. A bachelor of arts, a bachelor of fine arts, and a bachelor of science may all mean the same thing to you now, but it can be the difference between being qualified for a job and not being qualified. Do your research. Make sure you’re getting a degree that will prepare you for the career you want.
What Else Will You Need?
Sometimes a bachelor’s degree won’t be enough to get you the job you want. Those who wish to be psychiatrists, for example, will find that a bachelor’s in psych won’t cut it. Those who want to pursue publication may find that, despite their degree, they’ll have to take a six week workshop in another city just to be qualified for an editing job. There may be certification tests, training, and unpaid internships even after graduation. Before you begin your coursework in a major, be aware of everything it will take to get you to the end destination. For many students, knowing all of the steps to reach the end goal is exciting! For others, it’s just too much work to bother. Know what you’re going to be in for before choosing a major.
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