Double Major: Everything You Need to Know
This is a term used to refer to a degree program that is open to students who want to concurrently study for two majors. Students interested in two fields of study can opt for a double major, depending on their academic and professional goals. Typically, double majors are only available at the undergraduate level. According to the College Board, almost a quarter of all college students choose a double major. At some selective institutions, this percentage increases to nearly 30-40%.
Students pursuing a double major will get one degree with two areas of specialization. In other words, they’ll complete two sets of degree requirements and earn a single bachelor’s degree. This way, students can pursue two fields of study. Most students choose a double major in related fields that complement each other, such as Business and Finance. However, other students opt for two different fields of interest they want to pursue, when selecting a double major, such as Literature and Psychology.
The main reasons why students pursue double majors are to study courses that better reflect their career aspirations and interests in addition to strengthening their chances in today’s competitive job market. There are several students who want to prepare themselves well for graduate school or the workforce by combining their skill sets. For instance, a student interested in both computer science and business could enlarge the scope of his prospective job offers by majoring in both coding and business.
It’s important to note that students pursuing double majors often need thorough planning to meet all their requirements in four years. Usually, they’ll need more than 60 credits between their two majors, which isn’t a trivial task. Such students might not be able to pursue as many electives as their peers with a solitary major, who have more flexibility and time to try new things.
It has been noted that students who declare their majors earlier are likely to achieve more success than their counterparts who plan late. Declaring both majors can be done concurrently or at separate times. If a student has a major and a minor, they could even turn their minor into a second major. However, since different schools have varying declaration deadlines and requirements, knowing them is crucial when pursuing a double major. Declaring a major by their second year’s end is a good rule of thumb for most students. However, several schools permit their students to declare a second major later, thus letting them try out classes in the major before they decide.