Choosing a Major Workshop

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University of Oregon Advisor Tami Hill's workshop on choosing a major from 10/28/10.

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Choosing a Major Workshop

  1. 1. MAJOR DECISIONS
  2. 2. Major Myths and Facts 1. You need a major to graduate. 2. If you want a career in business, you should major in something in the liberal arts. 3. All majors have some things in common. 4. The #1 skill employers want their employees to have today is strength in technology. 5. Some majors are worth more than others and you should choose a major that’s practical.
  3. 3. Choosing a major is a process I know my interests, values, and personality I am aware of the wide variety of majors at the UO I know my skills and abilities I am interested in a few majors and know their requirements I can commit to my major of choice
  4. 4. I know my interests, values, and personality I am aware of the wide variety of majors at the UO I know my skills and abilities I am interested in a few majors and know their requirements I can commit to my major of choice
  5. 5. Interest, Values, and Personality  What do you like to do? To study? To know about?  What do you believe in? What’s important to you?  What kind of person are you? How do you relate to others and the world around you?  How might these connect to majors?
  6. 6. Exploring majors by topic http://www.washington.edu/uaa/gateway/advising/majors/exp. php
  7. 7. I know my interests, values, and personality I am aware of the wide variety of majors at the UO I know my skills and abilities I am interested in a few majors and know their requirements I can commit to my major of choice
  8. 8. Skills and Abilities  What are your academic strengths?  What are the areas in which you struggle?  What skills have you gained from jobs, volunteering, or internships? What would you like to learn to do?  How might these connect to majors?  For more help with identifying interests and abilities, check out the UO Career Center: http://uocareer.uoregon.edu/students/majors-and- careers/skills-interests.aspx
  9. 9. I know my interests, values, and personality I am aware of the wide variety of majors at the UO I know my skills and abilities
  10. 10. I know my interests, values, and personality I am aware of the wide variety of majors at the UO I know my skills and abilities I am interested in a few majors and know their requirements I can commit to my major of choice
  11. 11. Researching Majors  UO Course Catalog: Especially major requirements and course descriptions http://uocatalog.uoregon.edu/ http://uocatalog.uoregon.edu/business/business http://uocatalog.uoregon.edu/liberalarts/liberalarts
  12. 12. Researching Majors: Course Catalog
  13. 13. Researching Majors  Department websites on the UO home page http://www.uoregon.edu/
  14. 14. Researching Majors: Department Websites http://psychweb.uoregon.edu/
  15. 15. Researching Majors  Talk to academic advisors  Talk to people in the major: juniors and seniors, graduate students, faculty members
  16. 16. I know my interests, values, and personality I am aware of the wide variety of majors at the UO I know my skills and abilities I am interested in a few majors and know their requirements I can commit to my major of choice
  17. 17. Fear of commitment? Are you having a problem deciding on a major for any of the following commonly believed ideas?  I should have known what I wanted to do when I came to college  There is one perfect major for me  My major determines what kind of job I can get after college  Some majors are worth more than others
  18. 18. Addressing the myths  I should have known what I wanted to do when I came to college.  There are advantages to deciding a major later. Why?
  19. 19. Addressing the myths  There is one perfect major for me  Major requirements are only 30-50% of an undergraduate degree.  All majors have some things in common: critical/creative thinking, communication, inquiry, social aspect, self discovery.  You will more than likely not love 100% of everything about any major you might choose.
  20. 20. Addressing the myths  My major determines what kind of job I can get after college.  Very few majors connect directly with specific careers: Julia Child studied English. Matt Groening studied philosophy, as did one of the CEOs of General Electric. Lisa Kudrow was a biology major. Michael Jordan studied geography.  Many people change their careers in the course of their lives.  So what can I do with this major?  http://careers.utah.edu/jobSearch/employer/what_ca n_I_do/list.htm
  21. 21. Addressing the myths  Some majors are worth more than others  Some majors may lead to higher paying jobs.  Many employers do not care about your major.  In an increasingly globalized world and rapidly changing economy, which majors lead to which jobs is not so clear cut; flexibility and adaptability are key.  Employers are looking for employees with multi- disciplinary skills and knowledge.
  22. 22. “Once I choose a great major, I’m done, right?” Congratulations! Matching interests and abilities to a major usually means better performance (GPA). However, it is important to avoid going on “cruise control”:  Build relationships with professors and GTFs  Continue to research possible future careers and graduate programs  Connect concrete experiences to your field of study: work, internship/practicum, research, study abroad. These help you to know that a future career in the field is for right for you, and demonstrate your knowledge and experience to potential employers.  Work on interviewing and resume writing
  23. 23. Cited Works  http://www.uoregon.edu/~aass/AA_Pages/AA_ChooseMajor.h tml  http://www.washington.edu/uaa/gateway/advising/majors/ex p.php  Keyes, Scott. 2010. “Stop Asking Me My Major.” http://chronicle.com/article/Stop-Asking-Me-My- Major/63453/  Schwartz, Marion. 2007. “Adapting Learning Theory to Advising First-Year Undecided Students.” In Academic Advising: New Insights for Teaching and Learning in the First Year. NACADA:185-202.  University of Illinois. 2010. “Business Careers for Liberal Arts Majors.” http://www.las.illinois.edu/students/career/business/

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