Changing Majors

With a large iced coffee in hand, I am going to be very blunt in this post.

What you want to be right now, as a high school senior, will likely change. In fact, 80% of college students change their major.

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That being said, there is no reason to be afraid of a major change. Changing a major does not always mean a change in career path. To alleviate some of the stress, here is a personal anecdote:

I came into the University of Illinois majoring in Elementary Education, but have always had a passion for language arts, specifically. At the time I applied, there was no such thing as a Middle Grades Education major. I was enrolled in MATH 1o3, a math class required for Elementary Education majors. The class, to say the least, kicked my butt. I knew I had to drop that class.

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So I went to my advisor in a panic, not knowing whether I could pass MATH 103 or even stay in Education. It was then that she introduced me to a new major in the College of Education: Middle Grades Education with … wait for it … a literacy concentration.

I quickly changed my major from Elementary Education to Middle Grades Education with concentrations in both Literacy and Social Sciences.

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So there I was, fitting into the 80% statistic. The truth is, though, that I was also in a much more fitting major, too.

All in all, do not come into college stressing about majors, minors, etc. Take each class one step at a time, find what interests you, and do not fear change: 80% of people change.


Please note that comments close after 90 days.

Rohan Teredesai

February 3, 2017, 7:27 pm

1) My 1st choice was Comp Sci-Fi in Engg College
2) My 2nd was Comp Sci-Fi and Stats in LAS.
I got admitted to PreEngineering….which is like between 1) and 2) ? Right?
Does it mean if I really want to do Comp Sci-Fi, I am assured a spot right now on My 2nd choice of Comp Sci-Fi and Stats in LAS if I submit a change of major form?

The last Question on the PreEngg. DGS suggests you can do the change but does not say whether I am assured a spot in my 2nd choice



February 4, 2017, 7:26 am

Hi Rohan,

Congratulations on being accepted to Pre-Engineering! We reviewed students for their first and second choice, as well as all other avenues of admission. You are welcome to call the office (217-333-0302) to get specific information about your review. The website for pre-engineering has some great information about courses and declaring an engineering major, here.



February 18, 2017, 11:54 pm

This was such a helpful article! This definitely makes me feel a lot less scared about possibly not enjoying my major.