What to do if You Chose the Wrong Major: 3 Important Tips


If you chose the wrong college major, it’s okay. Start by:

  1. Doing more research (on yourself and other major options).
  2. Seek guidance from people you trust.
  3. Talk to your guidance counselor.

Picking a college major isn’t always easy and if what you chose the first time around is wrong, what next? It’s not uncommon to select a major and then realize, after attending some classes, that it doesn’t align with your interests as well as you initially thought. If you find yourself in this situation, there’s no need to panic.

In fact, recognizing that the major you chose isn’t the right fit is a positive step. It allows you to introspect and understand your passions and strengths better. This self-discovery can prove invaluable as you navigate the professional world and embark on your career journey.

If you’re currently questioning your choice, wondering, “What if I picked the wrong major?” rest assured, we have some guidance on what to do next.

1. Do Your Research

Maybe your grades started to slip, or you became very uninterested in the general topic of what you were studying, or it didn’t align with the industry you wanted to work in post-grad. Whatever the reason, if you recently realized you picked the wrong major, it’s time to research.

Research Different Majors

Explore your school’s list of majors and focus on the ones that pique your interest. Dive into their descriptions and required classes. Extend your search beyond the school website by delving into online resources, consulting friends, family, and even social media.

RESEARCH MAJORS NOW >> Browse All Majors (collegeraptor.com)

Create a list detailing the pros and cons of each major, reasons it appeals to you, and any additional insights you gather. This thorough research will reinforce your confidence in the new major choice you’re considering

Learn About Your Aptitude

Learning more about your aptitude will help you point yourself towards the major and career you will enjoy and be motivated by. Start by taking a closer look at your strengths and weaknesses. Ask yourself:

  • What subjects have you excelled in throughout your academic journey?
  • Are there any courses where you were consistently intrigued and motivated?
  • Were there classes you got good grades in or subjects you struggled with?

The answers to these questions can be insights into your aptitude and interests.

Consider Your Future Goals

A major isn’t just about what you enjoy learning; it should also align with your natural talents and the direction you want your professional life to take. During your research, you could find majors that appear very interesting to you, but if they don’t align with your career goals, they may lead to feeling another change in major is necessary later on.

2. Seek Guidance

Making the transition to a new major can be nerve-wracking. Look to the people around you for support and guidance. Talk it through with friends and family and see if they have any additional insight for you.

READ MORE >> How Do I Choose My College Major?

3. Talk to Your Academic Advisor

Your academic advisor is a valuable resource who can offer you guidance on switching college majors. They should have all the information available to tell you more about class loads, requirements, and prerequisites for different majors at your school. Schedule a meeting with your academic advisor to discuss the majors you are interested in. Tell them any concerns you may have about switching.

Sometimes certain majors have more requirements and less flexibility than others. They may take more time to complete. It’s important to ask your academic advisor if switching majors will change the amount of schooling you need. This is a key piece of information you will want to have before making a final decision.

Effects of Choosing the Wrong Major

If you chose the wrong major, it could affect your college experience, and understanding these effects is essential to making a well-informed decision about changing your major. Here are some examples of some things to consider:

  1. Academic Struggles: When you’re in a major that doesn’t align with your interests and abilities, you may find it challenging to do well academically. This can lead to lower grades, increased stress, and a decreased overall college experience.
  2. Loss of Motivation: If you are in a major that doesn’t interest you, it can lead to a lack of motivation for attending classes and completing assignments.
  3. Stress and Anxiety: The stress of being in the wrong major can take a toll on your mental health. Prioritizing your well-being is crucial to living a balanced life and enjoying your college experience. Choosing a major that better aligns with your goals and passions can help to alleviate this stress and anxiety.

If you’re wrestling with the thought of “what to do if I chose the wrong major,” know that you aren’t alone, and this happens to other college students as well. Through research, self-assessment, and seeking guidance, you can make a well-informed choice for a new major. The path to success in college (and life) is filled with twists and turns—finding the right major is a significant step in that journey.


For more help on your college journey, visit College Raptor and check out our extensive tools including College Match, Financial Aid Offer Comparison, and Career Finder!

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