Choosing a college major can be overwhelming for many college students. There are all kinds of factors to consider. While you might not know what to select right away, a bit of soul-searching and practical thinking can make a difference. Before declaring a major, you should consider these three things.

Earning Potential

Money isn't everything, but it certainly is something. The earning potential of your major needs to be considered alongside your plans for the future. If you plan to live modestly, then you may consider a lower-earning major. However, if you plan to have a family and/or buy a home, you should consider one that pays more. It should still be one that you enjoy, of course. If your major has a lower average starting salary, think of how you can make your way up the ranks and eventually earn more. A major you're passionate about means that you'll have a greater incentive to make an impact.

Growth Potential

When you choose a major, you need to consider the future of the industry. Growth potential refers to the possibilities for your field in the future. Fields of study leading to careers with expected growth, such as social work, which is expecting a 12% growth rate, are worth looking into. Career growth can help you to determine job security. A burgeoning field or one that's always going to be needed, such as medicine, are highly recommended. Your career can become more than just a paycheck. It can also be the way you make your mark on the world.


If you feel like you're going to struggle to enjoy your classes, you shouldn't consider that major. It doesn't matter how much you could potentially earn. Being miserable in your career is a huge burden. Before declaring a major, take note of your general education classes. Which ones do you enjoy the most and why? Enjoyment isn't just about ease. It's also about satisfaction. When you find a major that challenges your mind and makes you feel as though you're growing as a person, you know that you've come across the right one.

Whatever you choose for your college major, it should be one that will challenge you without causing discouragement. You need to take time, as your major could determine the course of your career. You might try speaking with an adviser or coach to help you decide what the best major for you is. Hopefully, you'll find yourself in a major that you absolutely love.

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