Nearly 20% of all incoming students at Immaculata have an undeclared major.
Almost 75% of students nationwide change majors at least once.
Immaculata is well prepared to help you find the right fit. We find that students in our Undeclared Program are generally curious, have lots of interests in different subjects, and are skilled in lots of different areas.
We’re excited about the opportunity to help you choose a major or minor combination that matches your interests and skills.
How to Choose a Major
Choosing a major is a big decision, but it doesn’t have to be scary. Try these four steps to start the process with confidence.
Now is the perfect opportunity to explore. You can look at areas of interest before you make a commitment. Here is how to get started:
- Complete your application. In the “Major Information” section of the application, simply choose “Undecided.” Once you enroll at IU, you will be assigned an academic advisor specializing in exploratory studies, who will assist you with your academic plan.
- Immaculata offers more than 50 major choices. Investigate all the programs that IU offers here.
Undeclared/Undecided Program Highlights
- You will work closely and collaboratively with your assigned academic advisor in the Office of Academic Success and Advising.
- As you embark on this journey, you will participate in specially designed programming, including group events, individual advising, and completion of career/personality inventories to assist with exploring their values, strengths and personality types.
- Your academic advisor will coordinate a meeting with you and a career coach in the Career and Professional Development Office to learn more about careers that interest you and to complete other career related activities.
- We are confident that by the end of your freshman year, you will be well informed and ready to select your major.
Challenging the Myths about Being “Undecided”
Myth #1: “I’ll just figure it out eventually.”
Just waiting and hoping will not necessarily help you explore. You will need to do some work to find your path.
Myth #2: “I’m the only one who doesn’t have a plan.”
You may feel that you are the only one who has not chosen a major. The reality is that more students enter as undeclared students than anything else.
Myth #3: “Once I’ve chosen a major, I won’t be able to change.”
Some majors are easier to change than others, but no student should continue in a major that you don’t feel is the right fit.
Myth #4: “When I choose a major I’ll have chosen a career for my entire life.”
Understand that a major is an area of study, a subject that you enjoy, not necessarily a career choice. That major may lead to a specific career, but it also may not. Remember, too, that most people today change jobs and even career paths several times throughout their lives. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that Baby Boomers, on average, changed jobs 11 times.
Myth #5: “There’s a test that will match me to my perfect major”
There are self assessment inventories to use as tools for exploring yourself, majors, and careers. However, there is no one test or inventory that definitively matches you to the perfect major. To narrow your options when selecting a major, we suggest using a combination of inventory results, regular meetings with your academic advisor and IU’s career specialist, and research about majors that you will complete independently.
Myth #6: ”If I start as undecided, I won’t finish in time to graduate with my friends.”
For most of Immaculata’s degree programs, you can declare your major during the Spring semester of your freshman year and be on track for graduation. About 85% of our undecided students declare their major at the end of their first year and still graduate on time. It is very rare that a student starting out as Undecided does not graduate in four years. Sometimes, making a quick decision about a major can lead to dissatisfaction and then a change in major after two or even three years. Changing your mind at that point can affect your anticipated graduation date.
Myth #7: ”If I commit to a single major I have to let go of all my other dreams and plans.”
We find that many students who are undecided about choosing a major have many interests. Remember that there are many ways to combine programs; the most common way is to add a minor in your second or third year at Immaculata. All degrees have room for and require electives, so you can take classes and explore other interests, even when the courses are not part of your selected major.
How Crucial is the Choice of a Major?
Don’t rush your decision
- Studies show that students who take the time and make the effort to explore majors graduate at higher rates than students who commit to a major early.
What employees want
- Before choosing a major, it’s helpful to know what employers value most when hiring college grads. Learn more about what employers look for when hiring.
How important is your major?
- Your choice of a major is important, but not for all the reasons you may think so. Listen to what a former Dean from Yale thinks is most important.
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