Should You Double Major?
A double major is as intimidating as it sounds – completing two separate majors simultaneously can be incredibly daunting! About 10-20% of students in the country enroll in a double major annually, which sees them undertaking almost double the work, mainly to set themselves a cut above the competition in the job market.
What Defines a Double Major?
Referred to as a dual major by some universities and colleges, a double major tends to consist of two closely associated majors, although they are not always closely associated. Double majors work to expand one’s job prospects in a specific area of expertise. For example, business and economics is a popular double major; foreign languages and international studies would be another.
A double major consists of obtaining two independent degrees at the same time. Anything that is a combination of degrees, such as BA and BS, is technically classified as a dual degree. Where double majors take about the same length of time to complete as a regular major, dual degrees tend to take much longer.
For many schools, your ability to enroll in a double major is based on your GPA level. For example, for Columbia University, you must have a GPA of 3.2. Meanwhile, for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, you are required to have a GPA of 4.0.
The Benefits Of Enrolling In a Double Major
Above all else, double majors help you stand out amongst the competition when applying for jobs. Double major graduates tend to earn more on average than those with just one degree.
It can also be highly beneficial when your main major has limited job prospects, such as photography. For example, enrolling in a double major in photography alongside business could increase your chances of finding a job tenfold.
A double major will also give you a wide-ranging education with double the skills to learn and master.
The Drawbacks Of Enrolling In a Double Major
Enrolling in a dual degree can prolong your time studying and increase your time without earning income, which could land you in a bad financial situation.
Your free time will also be shortened, as you are almost taking on double the workload. You may experience class overlaps, too.
You can’t focus on one and let the other fall to the wayside. Both majors count towards your overall GPA, and you need to commit fully and equally to both.
If you feel incapable of taking on two majors simultaneously, there are other methods of increasing your job prospect potential, including taking on a minor, doing an internship, carrying out volunteer work, or studying abroad.
Enrolling in a double major is one surefire way of gaining favor with employers and increasing your job prospects. However, it’s not easy and should only be considered if you’re willing to commit.