What Does It Mean to Double Major in College and Should You?

Mar 23, 2021

Most college students are faced with a series of unending decisions.Their decisions will determine the grades they get and their careers in the future. Among these big decisions involves picking a major. Students spend their first years studying and exploring different subjects.

These general requirements will allow you to have a well-rounded education and also guide you in the best direction. But what happens when you have a hard time deciding or choosing the disciplines to pursue? Most universities and colleges offer dual degrees or double majors. These words might sound familiar. But what do they mean exactly? And how does one pursue a double major?

Defining a double major

Students who decide to double major are required to complete studying two different disciplines. And only earn a single qualification lik eone degree. For instance, students who want to specialize in environmental science and biology need to complete two different degrees. However, they can combine credits and earn both simultaneously when they double major.

You should keep in mind that double majoring is not minoring. Inmost cases, students are required to earn around eighteen to thirty credits finish a minor successfully. On the other hand, completing a major requires forty to fifty credits. The objectives of minors and majors also differ. A major focuses on developing skills and preparing a learner for his or her career. A minor can complement a major. Or the learner can choose to explore other subjects.

Think of an engineering student who wants to learn how to play a musical instrument such as a guitar. The learner can choose to minor in music. The process of choosing a double major is different depending on the institution.However, most universities and colleges require learners to communicate with their advisors before making this decision. If the institution approves, the student should contact the registry office to declare their decision before making progress.

Why you need a double major

Millions of students across the world choose to double major because they love studying and want to get the most out of their learning experience.Others choose to do this because they became interested in two or more subjects and they’d like to stick with both. Also, others double major to specialize and have a competitive edge in the careers.

Double majoring is essential for students who are thinking of attending graduate school in the future. Adding another major will provide more learning opportunities when they pursue a higher degree. Students who pick two disparate majors usually have more options when it comes to study areas in grad school. Those who pick two or more similar majors will benefit too. For instance, an undergrad who doubled majored in sociology and psychology stands a high chance of being accepted into a master’s program in the same field.

Research studies show double majoring can boost your financial life.One study found that creativity and innovation increase when students double major. While conducting this study, researchers defined creativity as a set ofskills that include persuasive communication, networking, working in teams, and willingness to take risks. The benefits of creativity include the ability to writean essay and connect different materials across a wide range of sources. Double majoring allows you to take classes in two or more disciplines. And this helps in increasing your network.

While data varies, close to twenty percent of all college students choose to double major. This means that for every one student who double majors, four decide to stick to one area of study. Why is this the case? Double majoring involves studying more than one subject. And this means more study and revision time to pass your exams. Students who double major exhibit certain characteristics including a desire to achieve their study goals.

How do you double major?

To formalize a double major, you need to be in your second year of college. A student can reach out and communicate with their advisor if they’ve figured out what they want to study or need help to decide. The school faculty can serve as a great resource for learners who want to explore their possibilities in a specific field. Students should consider communicating with their colleagues to find out more about their double majoring experience. Such conversations will highlight important aspects such as time management, workload, and stress level.

Professors and college advisors can help students chart through their majors and discuss the required courses. Guidance is essential especially in specific situations such as when required courses are filled up. Advisors help students in finding alternatives that meet their study requirements.

Most universities and colleges will require students to submit an application including a statement of purpose and a roadmap. The institution will use these requirements to determine why a learner wants to double major and how he or she will achieve their goals. In most cases, a student cannot start working on a double major until they get approval from the school admin.

Credit hours in double majors

Double majoring doesn’t always mean extra time in college. Students need to plan carefully and pay attention to detail to increase their chances of completing their studies in four years. For starters, students need to work with their advisors to discover which courses go together. Also, most learning institutions require learners to take around thirty credits worth of electives.Some of these can satisfy the main requirements.

Transfer students should do extensive research. In most cases, credits transfer when there is a direct transfer agreement between the learning institutions. Transfers might not need the required prerequisites for majors when they start learning in a new institution. Students in such a situation can choose to take these courses.

Alternatively, students can contact institutions in their academic careers to determine the course transfer that counts as prerequisites. This will make sense if an individual knows where they want to transfer. Some learning institutions will follow the guidelines discussed above but with a few exceptions. Transfer students might be required to complete majors in a short while after enrolling. Also, students might be required to be approved by the undergrad council if they need to pursue two majors in the same department. In short, you’ll need to understand all the requirements of your learning institutions before you double major.

Cons of double majoring

Studying in college takes a lot of time and energy. Double majoring will require extra time and energy. Students who decide to double major should expect to take the full load in each semester to graduate. Double majoring is quite expensive and takes long to complete. However, this entirely depends on the student and how well they manage their time. A double major serves as an amazing way to build your expertise. However, this comes with a cost. Students who decide to use electives to fulfill the requirements of a major get fewer opportunities to branch into other subjects.

Students who double major need to take summer courses to complete their studies on time. The additional workload can make it harder for students to pursue internships and other learning opportunities outside of class like studying abroad.

An assignment writer whois looking for a college experience with less intensity should think twice before double majoring. Also, those who are looking for a robust experience such as participating in school administration or joining clubs will be required to limit their activities. This path is essential for students who want to specialize in a particular field or those who want to pursue graduate school. Students who are not in these categories should consider other available options.

Other available options

There are other alternatives for students apart from a double major.For example, students can consider declaring a minor. This approach offers depth found in a major without many courses. Those who want to develop a niche should think of specializing in their major. For instance, a chemistry majorcan choose to specialize in organic chemistry or biochemistry.

Also, studying abroad allows students to see the world while studying. These programs usually have a theme. Such programs serve as a supplement to the education of a student. Also, internships allow students to connect what they’ve learned in the classroom with the real world. And this canhelp in securing a job in the future.

Dual degree vs double major

As you have seen, double majoring is all about earning the needed amount of points or credits in two majors. Learners who double major earn only one degree with two concentrations. Students who enrol in dual degree programs graduate with two different degrees.

Dual-degree programs usually take longer and cost more money than the traditional alternatives. However, completing two degrees together can help you save tuition fees instead of completing your second degree later. Dual degree programs are not flexible when it comes to classes that learners take.While universities and colleges usually allow double major students to craft their roadmap.

Learners who complete a dual-degree or a double major program venture into the working world with an edge over the competition. When the two are compared, the student who graduates with two degrees seems to have an uppe rhand over those who double major.

When you want to decide which path to take, students should think about their long-term goals. Prospective doctors, lawyers, or those looking to work in the corporate world should consider going for a dual degree program.This approach is quite common because it helps in building expertise and making applicants more competitive during the admission process. Students who are interested in a career that requires specialization but not an advanced degree can consider double majoring.

You can manage a double major

Double majoring is closely linked to busy study schedules. And learners need to think of this as a marathon. If you’ve decided to double major, you need to get enough sleep. Scientific studies have shown that there is a close link between lack of sleep and students who give up along the way.Lack of sleep weakens your immune system and causes stress, anxiety, and other serious mental illnesses.

You should plan to incorporate exercise into your daily routine. And this shouldn’t be for physical health reasons alone. Biking, running, walking and other physical activities stimulate the release of endorphins which relieve stress and anxiety. Wellness practices like meditation and yoga boost mental health and enable you to stay calm. Students need to make time for socializing and hanging out with their acquaintances.Double major students will also benefit from taking regular brain breaks to relax.

Most universities and colleges offer health centers and gyms with licensed and experienced medical professionals and counselors. Most learning institutions also offer academic support such as advisors and tutors. Since these options might not work for everyone, students need to consider other alternatives. For instance, students who’ve decided to double major can benefit from forming study groups and meeting regularly to stay on track.

It’s always important to work with a schedule. As the popular saying goes, failing to plan is planning to fail. Scheduling will help you have time for everything including taking breaks, exercising, and socializing. Students usually receive a syllabus at the start of every semester or quarter. The syllabus outlines everything that will happen in the classroom.

Look at your syllabus and take note of the assignments and tests together with their deadlines. Record this information in your calendar to have a clear picture in your mind. By looking at your syllabus, you’ll easily create a study plan and plan for stressful times in advance to manage your mental health.

Conclusion

Choosing a major is one of the most important decisions you’ll ever make as a college student. While it can be stressful and overwhelming, always remember that there is no right or wrong path. Weighing the benefits associated with double majoring against time and money will help you make the best decision. Don’t be afraid to consult people who’ve taken a similar path.Pursuing a double major might be one of the best decisions you’ll ever make in your life.

Author Bio:

Jennifer Holland is a professional writer at Proessaywritingand essay writing service with 3 years of experience who has been writing about education and student life for several years. She helps students get their dream job by offering them her excellent writing skills and knowledge.

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