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does your major affect your chance of admissions?

nostalgicnostalgic Posts: 107Registered User Junior Member
edited September 2009 in Dartmouth College
for example if you pick a not very popular major vs. the most popular major does it make a difference on your chances?
Post edited by nostalgic on

Replies to: does your major affect your chance of admissions?

  • spunauglespunaugle Posts: 804Registered User Member
    Nope. Intended major has no effect on admissions decision. Infact, at Dartmouth we don't even declare offical majors until sophomore year!
  • ConsolationConsolation Posts: 14,813Registered User Senior Member
    Well, it might affect your chances if it is something unusual and reflects a well-established interest of yours to which you have devoted considerable time. That sort of thing can make you stand out as an individual who potentially brings something interesting to campus. I suppose that having conducted oneself at an unusually high level in a more standard type of major might be viewed the same way.

    Other than that, I doubt it. Everyone knows that most kids change their majors at least once. Exploring new things is what liberal arts is all about.
  • srrinathsrrinath Posts: 2,363Registered User Senior Member
    Not in any significant way. Though hypothetically if you have two identical kids with the same stats and all who've both done say four years of biology research, would you pick the one who's committed to doing biology at college or the one who wants to throw all that experience down the drain and pick say art history, in which he has zero experience. With the exception of such situations, I'd say indicated majors are of no key importance.
  • ConsolationConsolation Posts: 14,813Registered User Senior Member
    Personally, I'd pick the kid who wanted to do art history! :D
  • bluebayoubluebayou Posts: 21,454Registered User Senior Member
    I'd vote for Art History too, as would some adcoms. Gotta face facts: there are only so many premeds or Wall Street wannabes that will be accepted. All private colleges have English and math departments and classics profs who need students.....
  • srrinathsrrinath Posts: 2,363Registered User Senior Member
    Perhaps that was a bad example. But seriously would Dartmouth pass on a chance to bring that hypothetical bio kid to greater heights (given his significant experience with bio before even coming in) or abandon him in favor of the hypothetical art history kid? Bio and Art hist are just placeholders but this is when I think your indication of majors come into play. For a college that doesn't even get its applicants to do a supplement essay, I've come to believe that Dartmouth would not throw redundant questions into their supplements.
  • spunauglespunaugle Posts: 804Registered User Member
    I'll chime in again and once again say your intended major won't really affect much. In fact, alot of people chose to apply undecided from what I gather by talking to fellow classmates. If you're really worried about the question being "redundant" it does have the purpose of matching you with your academic advisor once you're on campus (though you can change your intended major any time after being accepted with the simplicity of a drop down list and one click)
  • bluebayoubluebayou Posts: 21,454Registered User Senior Member
    ^^spunaugle is correct for practically every selective college (ignoring engineering programs). But, again, if for some reason, 75% of the applicants this year mark premed, I can guarantee you that the admission chances will drop for that group in contrast to intended classics majors (who have the ECs to back it up). But this is also true at every selective college.
    But seriously would Dartmouth pass on a chance to bring that hypothetical bio kid to greater heights (given his significant experience with bio before even coming in)...

    They sure could, bcos there are literally thousands of "hypothetical bio kids" and only so many dorm rooms. That hypothetical kid could apply ED to beat the rush and lock up one of those precious slots.
  • kaysrikaysri Posts: 25Registered User New Member
    I was just wondering why/how the engineering program at Dartmouth would differ?
  • yers2yers2 Posts: 42Registered User Junior Member
    I've also wondered about this, but I really think that it does not matter at all what your intended major is. I know 1/5 of the students here put down "undecided" when they applied, and the rest (probably) just don't know they're undecided yet
  • babygrl9205babygrl9205 Posts: 596. Member
    i wrote my whole essay about a business related topic but im going into neuroscience. i really want to go to usc and want to do anything i can to increase my chances. since my essay is about business, should i put my major as business and change it later, just in case? or say neuroscience and back it up with my personal experience in neuroscience?
  • ConsolationConsolation Posts: 14,813Registered User Senior Member
    I'd say you should post your question on the USC board.
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