Registering for courses with undecided major

Hi Parents, I was wondering if any of your children are still undecided on major and if so how did they select the courses for first semester. We are looking at schedule builder to pre-select the courses before orientation and are at a loss on how to approach this. Or is it necessary to have a major before registering for courses?

Look on your college website to see if there are gen ed courses that everyone takes. I suspect your child will have some sort of advisement. For a semester based college, the load is usually around 15 hours credit - 5 classes on average. Best advice given my freshman was by a dean who said not to panic for first semester - it’s only 5 courses. Of course some majors have more lock-stepped requirements (thinking engineering, nursing for example). If you are thinking of several majors, look at the course of study (should be somewhere on website) for top several you are thinking about and maybe pick classes based on most sequenced major. Remember that if most of students’ interests lead to majors in college of Liberal Arts (for ex.), likely they require similar pre-reqs. Read requirements for different colleges - sometimes amount of language or math or type of science (bio for majors, bio for non-majors) will vary by college.

Without any other guidance I would find the website page on how AP/IB courses are evaluated if applicable. And then I would look at a freshman English class, a math, a lab science, and maybe a few fun options that appeal to your student.

https://onestop.umn.edu/academics/education-requirements

Start here and look at what classes would fill these requirements. That would be a good place to start!

I was an undecided major in my first years of college. I filled my first year courses with general education courses. I looked at requirements for majors I was considering and made sure I was keeping my options open for when I made a decision later. For instance, the general education requirements included a math class, but there was a math track for political science majors and a math track for hard sciences. I took the more advanced math track to make sure I wouldn’t have to go back and repeat something later, no matter which direction I went for a major. I also looked at which classes would meet a general education requirement, and took the ones that interested me the most. After the first couple of semesters I was gaining a better idea of potential majors and began to specialize more.

During orientation your students counselor will speak directly with them prior to registering for classes. They will also provide a list of recommended classes that your student should take first semester based on their interests and what credits they need fulfilled. I don’t think you need to declare a major until sophomore year.