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Changing Majors


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#1 datamanc3r

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 07:53 AM

Have any of you decided to change your majors? If so, how? What criteria do you use to judge whether a major is good for you or not?

Lately I've been thinking that Electrical Engineering isn't right for me. I'm not innately good at memorizing this stuff, the subject matter seems dry, and I can't really see myself being happy with it 10 years down the line. It's in my capacity to do the work of course, and the material isn't hard, but it's become stressful. I don't feel like putting the effort in because the work isn't lively; I have more fun writing essays than slugging through a technical book. Still, I don't know whether I might like the material sometime later, after I've gotten a sufficient knowledge base in it. I may just have this uneasy feeling about it just because I don't have a good foundation in it yet. Anyway, I feel as if I have a responsibility to the sacrifices my family's made to get me to school to pick a job with good job security.

On the other hand, I've become interested in sociology. I think it would be really cool to compile pages of study on the feasibility of stuff like the Arizona law, or researching how to attack huge social problems like gender and racial stratification, lessening the harms of poverty, etc. This kind of work seems to be more meaningful and lively, and at the same time less stressful. I know the working conditions are worse (it's more office-y and bureaucratic, which I detest) and you make less money. But it seems to me that I would be GOOD at this. On top of that, I could double major with econ and capitalize on my math background. It would really would kick some ass to be in research...only, from what I've read it's preferable that you have a doctoral degree. At any rate, I can't tell if this is a case of the grass being greener on the other side, or if I'm genuinely interested in this.

What are your thoughts? Have you guys changed majors? What made you do it? How did you decide?
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#2 dragonx

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 08:25 AM

one time i was a software engineering student

then i just went to honours computer science because the first one would have made me take psych classes....ew....

#3 Biggles

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 11:31 AM

isn't sociology armchair anthropology for future concerned parents

#4 rudy the red-beaked reindeer

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 06:12 PM

2 years biology w/ pre-med focus -> 1 year architectural engineering -> entering second year of landscape architecture

the 1 year of architectural engineering was just to get into the university I'm in now, and I only took classes that could be used in the architecture curriculum. I did want to see if I was interested in engineering (nope) but I figured I'd be heading into architecture anyway. then I changed my mind and went with landscape architecture because nature rules and I think I'll actually be able to affect the world/environment in a positive way. also the LA major absorbed most of my biology classes.

the 2 years biology idk. I wanted to be a neurologist. I did well with the curriculum and everything, I just figured out I didn't want to spend all my time in a hospital or working or on call. I want free time and I want a family

#5 Faust

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 08:03 PM

I changed the major of my degree, yeah, and it worked out PRETTY ADEQUATE!

I went from two years of LLB (Law) to a LITERATURE DEGREE! As you can imagine, the jobs came flooding in after that!!!!

Regardless, it was actually the best thing. If you feel something isn't for you, you're going to be pretty miserable doing it as a career. You should always follow your interests as you'll be much happier.

Or alternatively, you could scrap being  a doctor and become a gardener like earlchip seems to have chosen to do (HO HO HO!)
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#6 Mince Wobley

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 08:16 PM

Juris I guess the best option is do something you think you can do automatically, without too much effort and that you don't think is boring. Bonus points if other people actually have trouble doing it (ie I think all those gender issues, social problems could just be resolved with a neutron bomb but you'd probably better at handling them), which means you're doing the right thing for you.
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#7 Faust

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 08:20 PM

the best option is do something you think you can do automatically, without too much effort and that you don't think is boring.


That is totally living the dream. Well done for summing up the IDEAL SITUATION! I couldn't have said it better.
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#8 Dust

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 09:51 PM

Last year I considered switching from Computer Science to Software Engineering and I was literally just about to do it but if I did I would lose about 15 of the credits I earned in high school and I would basically fall an entire year behind. Plus I didn't like a lot of the classes that they would make me take, so I decided to stay in Computer Science because I was planning on minoring in Software Engineering anyways.
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#9 ase

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Posted 24 July 2010 - 07:53 PM

I began college undeclared, but I spent my first year taking computer science/math/required courses. By the end of freshman I realized I didn't want to do computer science as a career.... Sophomore year I realized I liked biology a lot, so it wasn't until then that I began to take bio/chem classes. I was basically a year behind everyone for the rest of my college life, but things eventually worked out. On the plus side, senior year when everyone else was taking stupid boring required intro classes, I was actually taking FUN classes.

#10 Carrion Crow

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Posted 24 July 2010 - 08:15 PM

Electrical and Electronic Engineering is my Major. I failed a year because I got ill and went nuts at the same time. I changed university and managed to get on a lot better.

Basically, once you get past the maths, the first two years of pure grind you get to learn about some things that are pretty rewarding. To get anywhere you pretty much have to work all of the time and be really disciplined which is what I haven't done until just this year. For me to get a first class degree I'll have to get 81% in my next year of study. Fucking tall order.

When I failed my 2nd year I was gonna switch to something like Geography which would be very enjoyable but inevitably end up with me not finding a job at the end and i'd be doing a teaching qualification. I grew some nuts and I worked my arse off with the EEE degree and it eventually became a lot more rewarding. I can see myself becoming something great from this and as I mature I am generally more responsible and interested in the subject matter. My problem with it was some sort of transition-to-adulthood depression/apathy thing that came with living so far from home and not being able to socialise a great deal due to the course. The course I moved to is the same, just less than 2 hours from my parents and in an area which is local that I feel comfortable in.

We all have our own experiences but that's mine. I guess you gotta be patient with these things cause they take a while and you don't wanna do anything that you'll end up regretting.

#11 everyclear

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Posted 24 July 2010 - 10:11 PM

ed in majoring in bummerism

#12 everyclear

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 02:18 PM

on a slightly more serious note, I started college as a pre-med student, but have since switched to just a biology major and added a psychology major.   As to what the hell I am going to do with it, or could actually do with it is sort of a mystery to me. 

#13 im_so_tired

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 03:55 PM

hah biggles is kind of right.

you could look into cultural anthropology, i think generally there's better approaches in anthropology than sociology. from my understanding, it attempts to understand people and their way of life before outlining problems,crunchin nums, and drawing up plans.

#14 Doktormartini

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 01:24 AM

I changed majors a couple of times but I was in community college so it's ok :)

Hey i'm going to school for Anthropology!

#15 everyclear

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 01:30 AM

anthropology haahaha

#16 Barack Obama

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 04:30 AM

Have any of you decided to change your majors? If so, how? What criteria do you use to judge whether a major is good for you or not?

Lately I've been thinking that Electrical Engineering isn't right for me. I'm not innately good at memorizing this stuff, the subject matter seems dry, and I can't really see myself being happy with it 10 years down the line. It's in my capacity to do the work of course, and the material isn't hard, but it's become stressful. I don't feel like putting the effort in because the work isn't lively; I have more fun writing essays than slugging through a technical book. Still, I don't know whether I might like the material sometime later, after I've gotten a sufficient knowledge base in it. I may just have this uneasy feeling about it just because I don't have a good foundation in it yet. Anyway, I feel as if I have a responsibility to the sacrifices my family's made to get me to school to pick a job with good job security.

On the other hand, I've become interested in sociology. I think it would be really cool to compile pages of study on the feasibility of stuff like the Arizona law, or researching how to attack huge social problems like gender and racial stratification, lessening the harms of poverty, etc. This kind of work seems to be more meaningful and lively, and at the same time less stressful. I know the working conditions are worse (it's more office-y and bureaucratic, which I detest) and you make less money. But it seems to me that I would be GOOD at this. On top of that, I could double major with econ and capitalize on my math background. It would really would kick some ass to be in research...only, from what I've read it's preferable that you have a doctoral degree. At any rate, I can't tell if this is a case of the grass being greener on the other side, or if I'm genuinely interested in this.

What are your thoughts? Have you guys changed majors? What made you do it? How did you decide?

Stick with EE man, do a double major if you're really passionate about sociology. Being a social worker is the fucking dregs if you have any spark of hope in your soul of maybe affecting greater societal change, you'll be driven insane.... and that's assuming you can even find work in the field! Almost every social science undergrad major I know is working jobs they hate and have nothing to do with what they studied, the ones that were lucky enough to score jobs doing things like social work are pretty set in a stable career path but always have the most depressing stories.
I switched from an engineering course to environmental science, it was a massive mistake and something I'm paying for by returning to school in the fall(electrical engineering in fact).

If you really love sociology, go for it and don't look back, just be prepared for graduate school if you want to work a fulfilling job in the profession.

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#17 Barack Obama

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 05:01 AM

Hey i'm going to school for Anthropology!

Good! From what I know of you I imagine you fitting right in and doing pretty well. Take it to the end and be some sort of wild professor after living with some tribe for half a decade in the amazon

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#18 Doktormartini

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 05:07 AM

Good! From what I know of you I imagine you fitting right in and doing pretty well. Take it to the end and be some sort of wild professor after living with some tribe for half a decade in the amazon

Well my plan was to focus on Native North America but as of recently I've been thinking of focusing on China.  Native North America and China are both to areas of the world I've always been really interested in and think they'd both be really interesting to study.

#19 Barack Obama

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 10:35 AM

Well my plan was to focus on Native North America but as of recently I've been thinking of focusing on China.  Native North America and China are both to areas of the world I've always been really interested in and think they'd both be really interesting to study.

Those are probably the most depressing areas to focus on, at the same time the most interesting except for maybe some places in central asia. Native north americans is kind of a broken record at this point as far as antropology is concerned, but rural western china is probably your best bet on finding something that hasn't been written about a billion times by white people who care

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#20 Carrion Crow

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 11:06 AM

As if DC is an electrical engineering student too! This place is choc full of EE students now! I am pretty sure there was another member who said they were doing EE  too but I can't remember who.

1 more year until I graduate :D




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