What Is “Undecided”?

Many students arrive at UNC uncertain of their eventual major.  Others may declare a major early on, only to discover different options as they encounter new courses and experiences.

Below are tips and resources for students who are continuing to explore their major options.  Note that UNC undergraduates are required to select a primary major no later than the 4th semester in preparation for registration for the 5th semester.  The declaration deadline is typically in late January/early February of the sophomore year.  Students applying to professional school majors must declare an alternate (non-admissions) major in the same time period.

It is possible to change your major up until the time you graduate, as long as it can be completed within your allotted time.  Don’t be afraid to explore other options if you are feeling trapped!

Resources And Tips For exploration

Talking to an academic advisor is an excellent first step when contemplating major and/or minor options. In addition, there are several resources available to help students who are undecided about their major.

Some tips for students who are still exploring:

Read the introductory sections and the course descriptions for potential major departments in the Undergraduate Catalog.  Pay particular attention to upper level courses – make sure there are some that interest you.
Talk with the Director of Undergraduate Studies or other faculty in potential major departments.
Take an introductory level, prerequisite or exploratory course for the major.
Use the general course planning tips and resources on our site to map out potential course plans that allow you to explore multiple options.
Visit University Career Services and use their many resources for those undecided about majors or careers.
Consider enrolling in EDUC 131 “Career Exploration.”
The Office of Graduate and Pre-Professional Advising offers one-on-one advice for students considering careers in lawhealth care, or a graduate degree in the sciences, humanities, social sciences, and some professional arenas.
Use our Exploring Possible Majors worksheet and the Choosing a Major checklist.
Download our course planning sheet to map our your courses semester by semester

When You Are Ready To Declare A Major Or Minor

Schedule an appointment with an academic advisor.  You may not declare a major during a drop-in visit. Remember that you only need one major to graduate.  Do not declare a minor or second major unless you are honestly interested in all of the required coursework.  It can sometimes be more beneficial to take supplementary courses in a number of different areas.  Every change of major/minor is indicated on your official transcript.