Making big decisions about college is tough for children and parents. Usually, as they approach the end of high school and start looking at different colleges, kids and their parents begin thinking about their major. Some people don’t consider it until they actually start college and take a few classes, but this is way too late to start thinking about it.
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In fact, you and your child should discuss possible majors while they are still in high school or maybe even earlier. That doesn’t mean they have to make a decision and stick to it for life, but the earlier you get the process started, the better. Unfortunately, a lot of parents don’t realize this because they don’t recognize how much difference it makes. Here’s why you should start thinking about college majors sooner rather than later.
It Helps Them Graduate Faster
Many students end up changing majors or dropping out, meaning that they take longer than 4 years to graduate. This costs more money and wastes time, and it usually happens because kids make a snap decision about their major and they don’t play to their strengths. If you start thinking about it early and help them work out what they are good at and what they enjoy, they are more likely to settle on a major they stick with, so they can graduate faster.
It Focuses Their Schooling
Certain majors require specific skills and if your child knows what they might like to do, they can focus on those areas while still at school. For example, if they want to attend a college for health sciences, they will need to achieve good grades in their math and science subjects. Having some idea about the subjects they need to focus on allows you to support them with extra tuition and by developing close relationships with certain teachers.
They Get Better Grades
When students are engaged with their major because they love it, and they pick something that is well suited to their skills, it’s only natural that they get better grades. This improves their job prospects in later life. When you start thinking about it early, you can consider which subjects they like at school and which areas they excel in. Then you can start looking for majors in those areas and draw up a list of possibilities.
They Will Be More Confident About College
Although graduating quickly and getting good grades are important, you also need to think about your child’s happiness and wellbeing. Going to college is incredibly daunting and although you can prepare them in some ways, they will still feel very nervous. They need time to find their feet, but they will feel much more confident about college if they already have an idea about what their major might be and what their future plans are.
Your child doesn’t need to make a final decision about their major right now and things can always change. However, there are a lot of benefits to thinking about it as early as possible.
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