Decide Early on College Major?


The Complete Idiot's Guide to Choosing a College Major Book Cover

Linda writes:
A lot of my friends already know what they want to do although we’re only in our sophomore year of high school.

Our guidance counselors say go in the direction of something your good at but I don’t know what my forte is.

I thought of acting/singing but many performers don’t make it (I’d still like to try anyway).

What can I do to find what I’m good at?


The Career Doctor responds:
I so enjoy receiving emails from my teen readers because you have so much ahead of you in your lives and there is no need to feel rushed to find your “one right thing” especially since that one right thing will probably change about five to seven times over the course of your life according to most recent studies.

There are lots of ways of discovering what you’re good at … sit down at your computer or with a piece of paper and make a list of things you like to do and things you do not like to do … then make a list of things you are good at such as acting/singing. Then see if you can combine the things you like doing with the things you are good at … and then you can investigate careers that use those strengths and skills.

You can also take some assessment tests. There are many available both on and off the Web. You can take a look at some of the better ones on the Web by visiting Quintessential Careers: Career Assessment.

While it may be a little early for you to start thinking about a major in college you can use the same thought process for where you are now so you should probably read Choosing a College Major: How to Chart Your Ideal Path and take a look at my book The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Choosing a College Major.