Double Majoring, Minoring, Electives – What’s it all about?

Before you go about picking your classes, it’s important to have an idea of what you want to get out of your college academics. What are you hoping to learn? What kinds of skills/knowledge do you want to have by the time you graduate?

Here are the basics:

A minor is half the number of courses as a major. It’s like a miniature version of a major, and you’ll get a good introduction to the subject. Minors can also help you specialize in a subject area (for instance – a major in English with a minor in Poetry, or a major in History with a minor in German studies).

Electives are classes in topics unrelated to your major that you take because they’re about subjects that are interesting to you or that you want to learn more about, even if you’re not pursuing them professionally. Electives are a chance to round out your knowledge base. If you’re majoring in the humanities, you may wish to take a math elective. If you’re majoring in the sciences, maybe you want to take a painting elective. Or you may just want to take an elective that sounds fun, to add some breathing room to jam-packed schedule.

A dual major is a courseload of two majors that complement one another (like, for instance, English and Journalism). Sometimes these majors have overlapping courses, which minimizes the number of classes you have to take.

If you double major, then you pick two unrelated majors and receive two different degrees. You can double major in Physics and Russian, or double major in Theatre and Math. A double major requires a lot of work and a lot of planning. You will have an intense courseload, and will probably want to work with an advisor to help you figure out scheduling to get all your course requirements in.

Don’t Let Your Parents Choose Your School