How does amount of hours studied vary between majors?

I have heard some people say that a business major studies the same amount every week that an engineering major studies every day. Is this true? Is there some sort of spectrum or rating for the amount of hours certain majors spend studying? From personal experience, how many hours a day does an engineering/physics/economics/philosophy/etcetera major study every day/week?

My husband and children study/studied every day. I studied every day.

There is no hard and fast rule, but if you want to be successful, and get good grades, you will study every day because you are going to go to work every day. The good jobs, with good pay will require you to work every day, so get used to it.


No, there isn’t. CS majors spend hours working on software, Life Science majors spend many hours in the lab and writing lab reports, while English and History majors churn out pages on pages of essays and literary analyses.

There are some majors which require more credits, but that dies not always translate to more hours.

There is also absolutely no way to actually measure the time that a student spends on their studies. One students can get through their material in two hours of intense focus, while another one will pull an all-nighter, but on put in a couple of hours of actual studying.

As @aunt_bea writes - in order to do well, you will spend a lot of time on any topic in any major.

It is generally true that Engineering is considered one of the more demanding subjects, and that Business is considered one of the less demanding subjects. As with all generalities, there are lots of exceptions.

But the bigger issue is what is your real question? are you trying to figure out what major(s) require(s) the least amount of work, so that you can have as easy time at college as possible? if so, there is still no broad answer, because what you find hard somebody else find easy- and vice-versa, and as @MWolf pointed out, clock hours are too variable by individual to be meaningful. And of course, there is variability across universities.

Here’s a different generality: if you pick a subject which you find genuinely interesting, most of the work will be more interesting, and more likely to be fun and engaging, which in turn will make the whole experience feel easier and happier. The corollary holds up as well: picking a subject that you do not find interesting will most likely make every hour you spend on it feel longer and harder than an hour doing something you like- and in turn you are less likely to do well in it.

tl;dr- your best bet is to follow your truest interest, not try to game the system. And if working hard at university sounds unappealing, a gap year, in which you work a full time job is highly recommended.


I am not looking for the easiest major. I was merely being curious about the workload. It makes sense that there is not much of a difference between majors. You asked what my real question is. I think my real question is how much do you study in college, and does it vary between majors. Obviously you have answered my second question, and addressed my first by talking about the large variability in answers. Anyway, thanks for the tidbit about enjoying your major.

Choosing a major that you enjoy is everything. It doesn’t have to be the only thing you enjoy, it doesn’t have to be the thing you love most in the world, but the doing of it should be the good kind of challenging -the kind that you enjoy doing and get satisfaction from successfully achieving.