Majors and Beyond

Guide Your Education
 

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Does your major have you musing? Whether you want to declare a major, change a major, or explore careers that relate to a major, there is a lot to discover about your future. Even more than just majors, available minors, academic programs, and specialized certificates at UCSB provide an eclectic mix of options to prepare for your goals.

We've simplified this process down to a few key steps. Use this page to launch into Majors and Beyond, including common outcomes to consider along the way.

Lightbulb icon  Looking to discover the essentials of exploration, no matter your major? Make sure to check out our Career Exploration page.

Choose or Change Majors

Identifying What Matters Most

Now that you have a strong understanding of your options for degrees, majors, and minors at UCSB, it is time to move closer toward selecting a major. 

If you would like more clarity on what matters most to you in this decision, it may be worthwhile to gain clarity through further Self-Assessment. We offer free assessments that help you learn more about your interests, personality, strengths, and values as you search for the UCSB major that best suits you.

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Take a moment to consider a few criteria that matter most to you in your college major. Here are some example types of criteria that could be considered:

  • Subject matter and curriculum within your interests
  • Learning environments that suit your needs
  • Faculty and staff that keep you engaged
  • Resources and programs that relate to your goals
  • Career outcomes related to the major
  • Opportunities to pursue an internship for academic credit

You can also review our Career Exploration tips to choose a major that supports your future direction. What are you seeking in your choice of major?

 

Narrowing Down Options

Next, use your criteria to refine the list of options down to a few top major choices.

By reviewing a short list of final options, you can now conduct deeper research to review nuanced considerations for each one, such as considerations for academic planning. Be sure to visit the Undergraduate Major Directory for a list of course requirements, and you may want to review additional tips from the UCSB College of Letters and Science for further guidance.

As you learn more about each of your top major choices, you will find that one of these options suits your goals best and is achievable within your academic plans at UCSB.

 

Declaring Your Major

When you are ready to formally declare your major, look for instructions on the major department's website. Typically, you will need to meet with the Undergraduate Advisor within your major department (not an academic advisor within your college) to complete a Change of Major Petition form.

If you have questions about completing General Education (GE) requirements, it is best to meet with an Academic Advisor within your college. Here are the different colleges at UCSB to consult with:

 

Changing Your Major

If you feel that your major is not the best match for your goals, it is very common and very normal to make a change.

When considering a major change, pay close attention to the 200-unit limit at UCSB. Consult with your advisor from both your major department and your college to understand unit limitations and ensure that you remain on track for graduation.

Outside of these specialized considerations, you can change majors with confidence by reviewing all of our Majors and Beyond tips to guide your process of discovery.

Did You Know?

1 in 3 students change their major during their undergraduate studies.

According to the U.S. Department of Education, 30% of undergraduate students change their major at least once.

Source: https://nces.ed.gov/pubs2018/2018434.pdf

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