Taking Classes Outside of Your Major

March 31, 2017  |   Found in Editorial

Most of us here at UofC are only expecting to take classes related to our major. In high school, most of the classes were chosen for me, and I was never given the option of taking courses that I might be interested in. Coming in to university, I thought I wouldn’t take any classes that weren’t related to my degree and future career – four classes a semester, four years, and that’s it but the funny thing is that since coming to university, I’ve switched my major three times. And that’s all because I took classes outside my initial major, which led me to interests and passions that I would never have discovered if I had only stuck to my set schedule. Here are some reasons why you should consider taking courses outside of your major!

1. To Avoid burnout.

Taking five political science courses can be tough – or any fill-time coursework in your specific major. You might get a little bored of it, no matter how passionate you are about that subject. Taking classes in different areas will help you say fresh in the disciplines that matter most to you!

2. Expand your horizons.

Some people get stuck thinking they will only enjoy classes in their major, but that’s not the case at all! A little exploration is likely to turn up new or non-expected interests, something that you would never have known about if you had stayed in your major. Working on something outside your major can be challenging, but it will let you see the work that you do in a new light. A new perspective might help you even get a better idea of why you love the major that you’re in.

3. Meet new people.

If you take classes in the same couple of departments, you might get used to having certain friends in your class or certain professors. Taking classes in different disciplines can help introduce new friendships who you might not have met otherwise!

4. Prepare for the real world.

The great thing about university is that we are given the freedom to tailor our degrees to exclude things we don’t want to think about. Unfortunately, that’s not the case in the real world. Even in your dream job, there are duties that you won’t enjoy. But by taking courses outside your major, you’re increasing your skillset and understanding of things outside your duties in a certain major. The information and new experiences you acquire in different and new classes can help you land jobs after school, and it will show diversity on your transcript to a potential employer.

A great time to take these electives would be in spring or summer! UofC offers some stellar courses in the down-seasons, and with our winter semester wrapping up, it’s something to consider!


Sherry is a 3rd year history student, lover of books & coffee.