Not sure what to major in? Follow these steps

three students work on computers in an airy classroom

Among all the choices you’ll make on your path to college, choosing a major can be one of the most stressful. Here at CSU, we’re proud to offer over 200 undergraduate options. You’ll have opportunities to research alongside award-winning faculty, study in top-ranked programs, and explore sustainability at the first platinum-rated university in the world.

The amount of options — coupled with additional factors like interests and priorities — can make a tough choice even tougher. We’re here to help you find a major that hits the target with these tips.

Think about your “why”

Are you planning to turn an idea or hobby into a career? Is it important that commencement will lead to job offers? Are you most concerned about starting salaries in careers related to your major? When evaluating majors, it’s important to consider your academic strengths as well as your personal interests, but it’s essential to also contemplate why you’re choosing to pursue an education. Think critically about what aspects of your college education are most important … the outcome you value most should be top of mind during the decision process.

If you need help sorting out which priorities rise to the top, consider making an appointment with your guidance counselor or one of our advisors.

Do the research

We know that the amount of choices can be overwhelming, so we’ve simplified your search by grouping all of our majors into seven major tracks. Major tracks are simply majors grouped by subject area. They allow you to limit your search by exploring only those subjects which are most interesting to you.

If you’re not sure what area you’re interested in, browse through our list of majors, minors, and concentrations. Well-known majors like psychology, business, and animal sciences are on the list, and within each major, you can concentrate on more-specific areas like we also offer counseling, marketing, or farm and ranch management. Without digging deeper, you may never know about a specific concentration that will match your interests and goals best.

If browsing through lists seems daunting, we’re happy to do the work for you. Simply take our free 15-minute quiz. This tool will connect your academic strengths and interests with specific majors offered at CSU.

Don’t stress

If you’ve researched majors and still aren’t 100% sure you’ve found the right fit, don’t worry! Changing majors is completely normal. It’s a fact: over half of CSU students will change their major at least once. In part, it’s because there are so many options, but it’s also due to experiences you’ll have as a student at CSU. You may enter college completely sure that a particular major is a great fit. Once you take a few classes, you might realize that you’re not into it — maybe a class you took in another area is more your style.

Our advice is simply not to stress. It’s most important that you choose the major that’s right for you, even if that means dropping one that you thought was a perfect match. Having the courage to make a switch will impact your career satisfaction and overall happiness for many years to come.

Undeclared? That’s a-OK

You may feel pressure to decide on a major before starting college, but know that’s never something to worry about. College is about exploration! One in three students at CSU enter as undeclared and use their first year to explore interests by taking a range of courses.

We have a team dedicated to helping undeclared students navigate the CSU experience. Our professional advisors in the undeclared-advising center specialize in guiding undeclared students in their search for the perfect academic fit. They provide online tools, one-on-one appointments, and opportunities to connect with fellow undeclared classmates.

These resources are meant to take the anxiety out of your decision, help you find your passions, and allow you to enjoy your time as an undeclared-exploring student.

Stay on track

Take the time to look at your strengths, interests, and priorities, and be sure to do your research on the variety of majors we have available. Use online tools like the MyMajors quiz and don’t be afraid to get additional help if you’re still having a hard time deciding.

Although you may not be sure of your major, it in no way should stop you from pursuing college. Be sure to stay on track and apply to CSU by the recommended dates listed in our online application guides. Finding the right major often takes time, and CSU has all the help you need to use that time wisely.

Jill Baylis

Jill was a staff member in the Office of Admissions until 2019 when she moved to Denver. As a first-generation college student, she focused on simplifying the college admissions process and helping future Rams find community on campus.