|12-24-2006, 05:35 AM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Dec 2006
Career help for student
I am at a point in my life where I don't know where I stand academically.
I think another member here posted a similar problem. Basically, I'm about to graduate from university but I've lost interest in my major (biology) and my grades are very low. I'm struggling to barely pass the upper-level classes. It's a miracle that I even was able to pass the basics. I study for the exams and for the class but no matter what I do I still flunk. I admit I did not study as much as I could have for the classes, but the interest just isn't there. I cringe thinking about opening the book.
I had a passion for biology when I entered college but now it's replaced with psychology. I believe that if I am studying for these classes and trying, and still not getting the grades, there must be something wrong and what I am not meant to do it. I think that if I really try hard to ace the classes, I could but I just don't enjoy it. I just have no interest in it anymore but instead of switching my major (since I'm almost finished anyway), I plan on sticking it through and getting my degree anyway.
I have to be quite honest, but harder, faster, smarter just isn't enough anymore and I can't keep up. I feel like society and the world is just expecting me to multitask everything that I do, be on top of a million different things. I feel like college has become less about learning than about just getting the grade. I want to slow down and find pleasure in the little things. I don't want my life to revolve around my work. I know work is required, but I don't want to drive myself crazy to be happy and successful.
I can't help but feel that I am a failure. I am doing so poorly in classes, I am behind everyone else because of my failures, I've switched my mind from biology to psychology, I've wasted money taking classes just to figure out what I want to do with my life, no extracurriculars...re-reading this list seems to reiterate my lack of success. Life is just not college, you know? Stuff happens and it moves you off track and it takes some time for people to figure out what to do.
Getting back to the problem, I really don't know what to do. I prepared my whole undergraduate career towards pursuing biology, and now with psychology it's a whole new ball game. I am not prepared at all. I have to start fresh.
What should I do?
Should I stick with my original plan?
What if I don't get into any graduate school for psychology?
What do you guys think about the outlook for this career?
What would you do if you were in my position?
I realize this is quite a bit to ask for, but I would appreciate any help. Thank you.
|12-24-2006, 06:21 AM||#2 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2006
1. It's ok to change your area of interest. That's part of the purpose of college - to explore various areas and discover our interest. Don't be too hard on yourself for that. I, too, went through a period of deep confusion in terms of career direction when I was in grad school. So I'd encourage you to take advantage of your time in college to explore different options.
2. What do you want to do after college? If as you said, you want to apply for grad school in psychology, what do you want to do with that grad degree? Do research, or be a practitioner, etc. If you don't have a clear answer, then that means you need to do some research, go to the career center, talk with the career counselors, your professors, alumni in the field, try to get an internship/part time job in the field of your interest. You owe it to yourself to do the best planning you can for future success.
3. Regarding whether you should graduate with biology degree, or switch to psychology, it depends on your goal in step 2. For example, if you want to get into a good grad program in psychology, then it usually requires good overall GPA, and good major GPA. If after doing your research, you find that your current path (biology) can not lead you to that, then you'd better change course. If you switch to psychology, and get straight A's, then you can still make your case with admission committee - e.g. I lost interest in biology, that's why my grades suffered, but I 'm really interested in psychology, and I have my grades to prove it. Maybe you can even graduate with a double major.
4. To summarize, you need to establish your end goal, and work backwards from that. If you're not clear with end goal, then you need to spend time gaining clarity. It will be time well spent, as it can avoid side tracks down the road.
5. Keep in mind that a person's interest changes overtime. It might be better if you can get some real-world experience, e.g. summer internship, part-time job etc. to confirm your interest in psychology. Also, you need a decent overall GPA if later on you decide to apply for grad school in a complete different field than psychology/biology, or apply for your first job etc.
6. An alternative would be to graduate with biology degree, get a job in the psychology field, and see if you really like psychology, then decide what to do next. The good thing about it is that it lets you test your interest. The downside is that 1) whether you can get a job in psychology, 2) even if you really like working in psychology, you might still find hard to apply for grad school depending on your GPA, availability of recommendation letters after you leave school etc. IMHO, this path is harder than switching to psychology major now.
Last edited by Norman; 12-24-2006 at 06:28 AM.
|12-24-2006, 01:11 PM||#3 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2006
What you do in your life can change numerous times. And it probably will. In this sense the university education is rather flawed.
The problem is that at 20-something you have already been studying for countless years. And school is not a realistic model for real life, it does not prepare you well for it.
I have many friends that completed their education and started doing completely different. You can't look at the four years they spent as anything else, but time lost.
What I advice anyone is work at least one-two years before going to university. There are a lot of things to learn from that.
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