Deciding on and declaring a major is a large part of the entire college experience.  Students should be actively involved in the process of choosing a major.  This is your chance to explore new areas, your future, and your goals.  Take advantage of the resources here at Cascades to make the best decision for you.

Clarify Your Interests, Values, and Skills

  • Reflect on where you are, where you want to be, and what makes you happy?
  • What types of courses and activities have held your interest, kept you motivated?
  • What are your strengths/things you do that come more naturally to you?
  • What is important to you when considering a career (security, schedule, advancement, salary)?
  • Schedule an appointment with the Career Development Center to discuss your interests, values and skills and consider taking the Strong Interest Inventory

Research Majors and Career Options

  • Review the list of academic programs at OSU-Cascades
  • Examine the advising checklist for different majors so you understand class requirements
  • Read through class descriptions in the Course Catalog to help you identify which major(s) will incorporate more of the classes that you are interested in
  • Visit your Academic Advisor to discuss options you may not know exist or fit with your goals
  • Explore majors and career options on the Where Can I Go With My Major? page
  • Research career options using O*NET or the Occupational Outlook Handbook (Don’t rule out any major because you think it may not lead to a job. Most majors in college aren't preparing you for a specific job, but rather they prepare you for the job market by developing transferable skills such as reading, writing, researching, problem solving, and critical thinking)
  • Take an exploratory course in an area you are interested in
  • Perform informational interviews or volunteer in a career area that is associated with a major of interest

Choose a Major

After all that research, you may still have two or three majors that you really like and are having a difficult time choosing between. Understand that you are now more informed on each major and cannot make a bad decision at this point. Each major would be a good fit for you for one reason or another. Ultimately, you will need to choose and/or look at possible ways to combine major/minor options and additional courses of interest. Schedule an appointment with your Academic Advisor or a Career Counselor if you would like more assistance in processing your decision.

Implement Your Decision

  • Visit your Academic Advisor to make sure you are ready to declare your new major
  • Fill out a Change of Undergraduate Program form
  • Start taking classes that contribute to your new major! 
  • Continue to reflect on your goals and commitments as you progress through degree attainment

Choosing a Major Checklist