Friday, February 22, 2008

4 Steps to Helping your Teen Pick a College Major

Picking a college major is one of the biggest decisions after deciding to go to college that a teen has to make. You can help your teen make his/her decision with as little stress as possible using these four steps:
Step #1: Don’t get alarmed if your teen isn’t sure about what he/she wants to do. It is an awful tall order. It takes some time and a lot of thought. Know that your teen should actively start looking into a major as soon as he/she has decided to go to a college, but can wait until sophomore year to make a final decision. So, there is time.More: How To Talk to Your Teen About a Future Career
Step #2: Get ideas of which field of study that has caught your teen’s interest.
What classes did your teen talk most about? What activities with clubs did your teen enjoy? In what courses did your teen do well with his/her grades?
You can let the power of the internet help here too. Have your teen take a interest assessment test. There is one free given at the University of Arizona.
Step #3: Look at what careers are available in that field of study. Specific research is needed to find what jobs are available. This step is often missed by parents and students – or it is seen as something to do at the end of schooling. I tend to differ with this opinion. Having a specific goal helps someone do what needs to be done to obtain it.
The Occupational Outlook Handbook put out by the Department of Labor gives you what schooling is needed for a specific career, how much income you can earn and other important information about almost every career out there today. It’s a wonderful free online resource.
Step #4: See what it takes to get your teen to where he wants to be. Here is where having some college catalogs will help. Find out which colleges have the majors your teen is interested in looking into further.

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