When it comes to choosing a course in college, it can almost be likened to deciding on the career path to follow. College programs are usually a combination of vocational education and general studies. It is highly crucial for you to select the right course to study in college since it is most likely going to be what you will eventually pursue for the rest of your life.
But choosing the course of study that appeals to you is much more than the typical “follow your passion” motivational talk you have probably heard or read about at one time or the other. Several factors are responsible for determining a student’s choice of course in any college.
In this article, we are going to take a closer look at the common factors that determine students’ choice of course in college.
How challenging is the course?
This is perhaps, the number one factor that most students take into consideration when choosing their course of study. As a result of hearsay, some people tend to perceive some courses as being very hard to study and will want to opt for the ones they could go through without much stress. This is one factor that determines a student choice of course in the college.
Howbeit, it is advisable that you never draw back from any challenge that you come across in life. College life is designed to not only stretch you both mentally and physically but to also get you out of your comfort zone. There is no harm in offsetting challenging classes when you can take some that are easier.
Is it compatible with my interest?
At some point, lots of students tend to fit in some courses based entirely on personal interest. Although their majors may be a sign of their primary interest, most individuals are usually interested in more than one academic activity.
This can also play a significant role in determining a student’s choice of course in college.
The reputation of a particular educational title or degree
Another factor that influences students’ choice of course in colleges can also be attributed to the reputation of the top degrees in a specific vocation or field. It is not strange for universities to rank some courses of study higher than others. For example, it is common to see medical sciences, engineering, law and finance are given higher positions in colleges. The quest to belong to the class of students undertaking these highly regarded courses in college also affects the decisions of the students when determining courses of study in school.
In most cases people tend to get synchronised to the environment they find themselves. For instance, one growing up in a place where most of the college people around there are studying a particular course and they keep speaking positively about that could influence one to develop an interest in such direction. Results from several studies have verifiable evidence that the environment one finds his/herself plays a vital role in determining the physical and psychological activities the person may get involved. This is also applicable to a student’s choice of course in the college.
Peer pressure is also traceable or closely related to the environmental factor. In other words, peer pressure could be an aspect of the environmental factor. Peer pressure has often had a considerable effect on what people decide to do including choosing a course of study in the college. Young people that are eligible for college most times would want to study what their friends are studying or what has been a discussion among them as what to study at the college.
This is one major factor that determines students’ choice of course in the colleges.
A lot of people in the colleges settle for courses they don’t actually desire to study as a result of frustration. This frustration could emanate from not being able to afford the fee for their desired course, admission denial due to the number of people competing for the course, eligibility for a course regarding O level requirements etc. When this happens, and a student has waited for so long to study his desired, out of frustration, the student may choose to go for any course that matches his qualification and financial strength.
Advisors in this context include parents, teachers and sometimes friends. These set of people play a significant role in what a student may decide to study in the college. The student believes so much in the teacher’s advice on what is actually good for him likewise the parents. Most students heed the advice of their teachers, parents or friends in choosing the course of study in the college.
Career advancement is another factor that determines students’ choice of course in colleges. Most students already have skills in some specific fields and upon seeking to go to the college; they tend to follow the path which they are already skilled in. They try to advance their career by studying a related course or one that directly has to do with their chosen profession.
Sometimes the student may want to study something different, but because he/she may not get a scholarship from the organisation he/she currently works, choosing the organisation’s desired curse becomes necessary.
Selection done by colleges when admitting students has also seen many students settling for courses they don’t wish to study. This situation is evident mostly in developing countries; In Nigeria for instance, most students have always held that the courses they study are being given to them by the school and not what they had applied to study. This often comes as a result of competition in some popular courses while neglecting some new courses in the schools. As a result, schools have to allocate courses to students without prior notice, and most students have no other option than to settle for such courses. However, students’ end up being happy with the courses.
Thus, college selection has been one of the significant factors that determine a student’s choice of course in the college.
Although these are not the only factors determining student’s choice of course of study in colleges, they are predominant in the manner by which students decide on the academic programs to pursue in higher institutions. They predominantly influence the students’ decisions to choose a particular course of study in colleges.