Butting Heads: Single major or double major?

Don’t double your trouble

Arguably one of the hardest decisions one has to make at college is what you want to major in. Some people come in knowing what they want, others take a few years and some change constantly because there are too many options. College offers so many different majors and minors that it is impossible to choose just one, which is why I chose two and have been a double major since my Sophomore year.

I feel that double majoring is the way to go at school. With so much to learn, how can someone stick to only one path? Yes, some majors are hard and require way more focus but if you have the time, why not double major. You’re already paying for it, why not get the bang for your buck? I believe that you get so much more out of college if you take the classes that interest you the most and in doing so, why not just major in those disciplines if they all fall under the same category?

At the end of my first semester, I was a journalism major. By the end of my second semester, I was also an English major. Doing both has been the best decision. Yes, it can be stressful and sometimes I want to hide away in my blankets forever. But, it offers me so much beyond college. Having two majors, being able to say I was trained in two separate disciplines that can play off of each other, I don’t think there is anything much better than that. I get to study two things I’m highly interested in, I still get to take fun classes here and there outside of my majors, and when I graduate, I will have so many different paths to go down. It opens up so many doors and makes me feel fulfilled in my college experience.

I’m here for four years. I’m spending all the money. I’m going to get everything I can out of my time here which is why I’m a double major. Something that I think is the best thing to do.

 

Single Major

Double majoring is an enticing idea to many students. A double major can help you stand out among others as well as help open up a variety of job opportunities upon graduating that wouldn’t have been available otherwise. Don’t be fooled though, even with these seemingly tantalizing benefits, choosing to double major is not the way to go.

With the four-year graduation rates at less than 50% at URI in 2013 and only 28% across the country, a double major only increases the likelihood that you’ll spend at least one extra year in school. If you live on campus then you’re looking at another $22,000 or more in debt just to earn that extra degree.

Even if you’re lucky enough to escape some of that debt, having two degrees may open you up to more job options, but it won’t necessarily make you more desirable in either individual field. If you have degrees in English and Sociology you can apply to twice as many jobs, but a person hiring a social worker probably won’t care that you know a lot about 14th century literature.

The only thing double majoring really does is limit your ability to explore new subjects. Even if you are planning to stay in college for five years, completing two majors will still take up a majority of your class load. All those random free electives and optional classes that you could have taken end up being replaced by major courses.

Some of the best courses I’ve taken in college have been random free electives. While I didn’t decide to go into astronomy or film production, the things I learned in those classes helped to develop interests and knowledge that I’d never have become open to if I hadn’t had the free elective credits to just dive in.

Don’t lose out on discovering something about yourself just to get a leg up on a job opportunity that may or may not exist in the future. Say no to double majors.