At some point in your life—or, more likely, at many points—a well-meaning person will wander up to you and ask what you plan to do as a career.
Once you decide to go to college, your world starts filling with a bunch of classic, time-honored traditions: campus visits, T-shirt collecting, junk mail disposal (please recycle it!), and randomly weepy parents. But one of the biggest and most challenging traditions involves picking your major.
If you’re headed to college soon but haven’t picked a major yet, don’t stress. You get a great opportunity to shop around for a major by learning about your options and the different futures they may lead to.
Coyote chased Roadrunner. Indiana Jones and Monty Python both looked for the Grail, but only one of them found it (spoiler alert: he lost it again). Now you get to join the explorer’s club as you begin The Quest to Find the Right College for Your Future.
But where do you start? How do you get this train rolling? Good questions. That’s why we’re here. Consider this post a secret treasure map to your very own cache of college gold.
As you approach the end of high school and the beginning of college, one of the biggest decisions in the next year or so is choosing your major. Whether you do it before you head off to college or once you get there, your college major represents the academic area you’ll live in for the next four years, plus the next big step toward your future.
You already know the pop culture clichés about psychology: A patient stretched out on a leather couch in a room lined with bookshelves. Off to one side of the couch a doctor wearing round wire-rim glasses calmly says, “Yes, I see. Now, tell me about your mother.”
Parent-based crises aside, psychology maintains its position year after year as one of the most popular college majors. There’s something about unpacking the mysteries of the human mind that intrigues college students.
Maybe it’s the chance to learn about yourself; maybe it’s understanding how other people think. Or perhaps it’s because (as one former psychology major speculates on Quora) psychology is considered “the easy one” among the sciences—at least by those who don’t understand it.
If you’re undecided and applying to colleges, chances are the thought of a psychology major crossed your consciousness. But what is the psychology major, really?