5 tips to help you pick subjects

Photo: internetmonk

We’re one week into the semester, and I’m sure some of you are enjoying the things you are learning in class.

But there might be a few who are feeling uncertain about the choices they have made and are possibly thinking ‘did I choose the right thing?’, or ‘what am I doing?’, ‘why am I even here?’.

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Don’t worry, I’ve been there before. So I would like to share a few tips for choosing subjects that could possibly make your semester a lot more enjoyable.

1. Check out prerequisites

Some degrees will be less flexible than others, and will also require more compulsory subjects that you have to take in order to specialize/major in it.

In this case, it would be a smart idea to take as many compulsory subjects as you can in the areas of your degree that interests you.

This way, you won’t find yourself stuck when deciding on your majors/specializations because you have not met the prerequisites in your first year.

2. Understand how your degree is set out

Think smartly and plan smartly. Keep in mind that each degree has its own requirements.

You also have to make sure that you take a certain amount of level 1,2 and/or 3 breadths over the three years of your undergraduate degree. If you aren’t 100% sure how you should be managing the layout of your degree, drop into your student centre to have a chat with someone to ensure you are on the right track.

3. Explore

In your first year, it is a good idea to explore all the areas in your degree and see what interests you. As you get further into your degree you will have less room to move as your begin to specialise.

Find something that you are passionate about, and something that makes you want to learn and understand more about. Never give yourself only one option to work with!

4. Attend lectures for other subjects in the first week

A lot of people don’t realize that subjects don’t have to be finalized until the census date (which is usually a month into the semester). The census date is the last day where you can withdraw from subjects without having to pay for the subject.

However, the last day to enrol into subjects is at the end of Week 2. So you can still change your mind if you are not really enjoying the subject material and you don’t think your feelings toward it will change in the weeks to come.

Therefore it is a good idea to attend other lectures that you think might be interesting, even if you are not enrolled in it. You may find that you like something else better!

5. Choose subjects you love

Pick something that will make you want to get up early in the morning for, even if it might be 5 degrees outside on a cold Winter’s day and snuggling under your blanket sounds like a much better idea (which most of the time, it is).

You are the one that is going to be learning the subject material and doing the assignments, so studying will become a lot easier if you are learning something you enjoy.

I hope that these tips will help some of you in your subject-decision making, but for those who are still unsure, finding something that motivates and interests you is always a good start!

– Shirley

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