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Changing majors drastically. - December 5th 2011, 11:21 PM

I'm supposed to start Community College in January. I always planned on becoming a Psychologist but given my mental health issues and social anxiety making me shy, I pretty much decided that I'd suck terribly at being a doctor. I've been thinking about writing more and doing Photography. Shouldn't I do something that I'd like and I think I'd be good at rather than find out later? Or should I stick with my original plan? I know my family would flip if they found out that I'm not going to be a doctor so I can "write and take pictures" (that's how they'd see it). I'm just so confused. I always had this plan for my life and now... not so much.
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Re: Changing majors drastically. - December 6th 2011, 02:45 AM

I say if you really want to be a psychologist, you should go for it. Depending on what you want to do the social anxiety might not get in the way so much, for example if you wanted to do individual counseling or something with small groups of people. Your mental illness, if well managed, might actually help you as a psychologist because it gives you an element of understanding that other people don't have. You don't know yet whether you'd be good at it or not, at least try it before you decide that and try not to make the decision based on one or two classes. Maybe double major?

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Re: Changing majors drastically. - December 6th 2011, 02:58 AM

Hey there!

I'm a psychology major and I'm graduating next Christmas, but what you need to understand, just because you want to go in to psychology DOES NOT mean you have to go in to clinical psychology (helping people). Do some research in to psychology and see what jobs are out there. I actually took a class this past semester on JUST careers in the field and found it extremely helpful.

And just because you have some disorders doesn't mean you shouldn't go into it, that is a silly reason not to go.

BUT a good reason not to major in psych is because you don't find it interesting. You need to do something YOU like, not what your parents want you to do. It will be a battle, it was with my mother, she wanted me to go into pharmaceuticals... I hate chemistry, so that was a no go. But the first two years won't effect you terrible.

So take your time in deciding, take intro to psychology and a writing or photography course. Explore your options, don't declare a major your first semester and vow to stick to it, especially if you don't like that major.

Remember, its your life, not your parent's life.


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Re: Changing majors drastically. - December 6th 2011, 03:08 AM

I'd say take mostly gen-ed classes that you'ld have to take where ever youre deciding to finish college. I was a chem major but once I started taking the class I realized i didnt really wanna do it anymore so im taking gen-ed courses next semester to maybe give myself more of an idea.

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Re: Changing majors drastically. - December 6th 2011, 03:40 AM

I'd say just take a bunch of classes in very different areas (ideally while fulfilling general requirements) and then see how you feel after taking those classes.

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Re: Changing majors drastically. - December 6th 2011, 05:13 AM

Community college offers opportunities for you to be able to check out your options. Psych 101 is usually a class everybody has to take anyway, so take a good schedule of liberal arts and sciences along with some photography classes and see what you like from there. Also continually be talking to your school counselor. You never know, you may find another subject you like while taking these, or you may end up wanting to do both! Community college offers an opportunity to explore and figure out what you want to do. Your options are not limited.

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Re: Changing majors drastically. - December 6th 2011, 07:56 PM

Is it your first year of classes? If it is i'd say its completley up to you which path you choose to take. My only real advice is to follow your heart and what you want to do rather than what your family wants you to do. I'm now in my third year of university majoring in english when i wanted to apply to education. I'm stilll going to end up applying to education after this degree and i'll be in unviersity forever at this rate haha. I guess my advice is to take a bit of everything you think you may be interested in. I thought I'd be really interested in french but by the end of my second year I was doing miserably and unable to get into it and enjoy it. I also think its important to consider going into psychology and then doing photography and writing on th eside. sometimes i find that having to do it as a job or work takes away the enjoyment and if you decide later on that you want to pursue that you always can.
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Re: Changing majors drastically. - December 7th 2011, 06:11 PM

Take a variety of general courses, as well as psychology and photography because you may find a course you like or easily get high marks in that you didn't think of in the past. As already mentioned, there is more than just clinical psychology. However, if you choose to go to clinical psychology, you can use your mental health issues to your advantage as both motivation to succeed as well as first-hand experience you can draw from to apply in the psychology courses. Many psychology courses (at least in university, not sure about community college) require doing a research paper on a certain topic and you can use it as an opportunity to better understand your mental health issues.

I'm not sure how community college works but in university, there's no point in declaring your major in the first academic year.

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Re: Changing majors drastically. - December 7th 2011, 06:42 PM

Thanks for all the responses. They helped a lot.

I already scheduled my classes about a week ago and I'm taking: Biology, General Psychology, Math, Student Success Seminar, and College Writing I. This is just for the Spring 2012 Semester. Should I ask for Photography for when I schedule classes for the Fall 2012 semester? Cause TBH, that's a lot of classes and I don't think 6 classes would be so well on me starting school again after 8 months of not going to school and I'd prefer not to be so stressed out.

As for not being a Psychologist because of my mental-health issues, I always thought that I couldn't but I learned from your replies and my own Psychologist that I can do it and like The Man And XX Master (sorry, I don't know your real name ) said, it could be an advantage to the class itself because I understand in a different way because I've been through it. And I can understand myself better, thankfully. Haha. But yes, now that I see there's an advantage, I'm not going to give up on that dream quite yet.

Thanks again! <3
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