Once students say goodbye to their pre-university days, they are then faced with the prospect of having to choose a university degree. With the endless number of options being presented, students often feel overwhelmed with having to decide their area of study, especially since it does allude to their future paths or the work they would be doing for the rest of their lives. Besides that, many students also have to take into consideration the advice given to them. The stress as well as social pressure potentially stemming from family, teachers and even friends, or perhaps just from society in general, may strongly influence students in the degree they end up picking. For instance, many students may feel inclined to take a Science degree instead of an Arts degree, as Sciences may be favoured over the Arts in some communities. It is not uncommon for students to give into that pressure of choosing the degree a third-party wants them to study.
Steps to make in choosing a degree
Now, it is crucial that students have an idea of what they want to study, for it is not as simple as narrowing things down into two categories of either going towards the direction of the Science or Arts field, as both fields hold a large number of options within them as well.
First off, students should look into their results and ask themselves these questions:
- Which subject did they score well in?
- Which subject did they enjoy the most in school?
- Which subject sparks their interest the most?
It is also important for students to understand that choosing a degree should not solely be based on the subject they scored highest in during pre-university. Of course, it can be used as a guidance, but it should not be perceived as the one and only main reason, since there are several other factors that contribute in the process of making a degree choice.
Students should also seek outside help, perhaps getting an opinion from someone who has a neutral stance. Find a teacher, a friend, or even your parents if they are not biased towards any particular field.. Another option for students would be to receive a perspective from a student counsellor or an educational consultant group such as MABECS, which will provide students with quality guidance.
Furthermore, students must know which advice to take and avoid. It is important for students to have a clear understanding that their final decision will be based solely on themselves. Follow your instincts and trust yourself. It is only through the foundation of trusting yourself where you will find the path meant to be followed.
Career fairs or educational events
As exam results are released, there will be many opportunities for students to attend these events, in a way to learn what universities have to offer and choose a learning environment they would be comfortable with. At these spaces, there are opportunities to meet career counsellors, alumni and university staff to provide helpful tips on making a degree choice. With virtual fairs and physical forums, pre-university students have plenty of chances to find out, either on their own or with loved ones, where they are able to further their studies.
It will all fall into place
You are not alone in this. If you’re feeling down or extremely frustrated and stressed out, confide in someone that you trust. Students often get so wrapped up in their own heads when it comes to picking a degree that they forget to look at it from the bigger picture. Sometimes, you just need a few kind words from an outsider’s perspective to have that moment of realisation dawn upon you.
Lastly, students must know that there is always the option of taking a gap year if needed. It is also essential for students to know that there is no shame in wanting to take a gap year, regardless of societal norms. . After all, it is always better to take your time in making a decision rather than simply jumping onto the bandwagon. Most importantly, always keep in mind that there will be pressure, no matter the circumstances. It is just a matter of learning how to respond to times of adversity. It may seem difficult, but keep in mind that it is usually in difficult times where students learn and grow the most.