Introduction to Week 2

One of the major differences in Europe is that you basically have to know your major ahead of time. And as you remember, it’s called a program.

All right, so let's jump into week two, where we're going to be talking about Areas of Study. So as I mentioned last week, one of the major differences in Europe is that you basically have to know your major ahead of time. And as you remember, it's called a program. All of your courses, except for your electives, are somehow going to be related to your program. So the thing that's cool about this is that because you're choosing your program based on your interests, all of your courses are then a lot more meaningful, and of course, interesting. Now, you can still pursue non-related areas of interests through electives, but they're not going to be required. So what if you're thinking, but I have no idea what I want to study. That's what we're going to talk about this week. 

What if you're thinking, ugh, this is gonna be a waste of time. I already know what I want to study, I promise that this lesson is still going to help. So the thing to recognize, whether you do or don't know what you want to study, is that there are a lot of programs that combine more than one area and present it in a meaningful way. It's sort of like majors and minors, but it's cohesive. So you might come into this lesson thinking, oh, I want to study international business, and walk out of it, knowing that you can combine your interest in international business with cultural studies. 

So in addition to these sort of multidisciplinary options, there are also programs that start out broad, and then narrow based on your choices as you go along. And there are even some that are more like liberal arts programs where you choose your major the second year. So this is just to say that whether you do know what you want to study, whether you have no idea, or if you're somewhere in the middle, this week, I really do think there's going to be valuable information for you. 

One thing I want to touch on, we often fall into the trap of thinking that when you choose your major, your program, you're basically choosing a career. And while this can be the case, I really don't think it has to be. I believe that if you are studying something you're passionate about, you'll find a wide variety of careers. 

So we're going to touch a little bit on careers this week. The focus more this week is identifying what academic fields your passions and interests are most related to. So we're going to go through what do you love to do in school, outside of school, with your free time, structured, unstructured, the things you do because you love it and not because you have to do it. And we're going to look at those areas and we're going to figure out what the related study areas are. And we're going to try to identify different areas of study that combine more than one of your interest areas. 

So even if you think you know what you want to study, I encourage you to go through this lesson. By the end of this week, you should all have a shortlist of study areas that are aligned with your interests that then I will be providing feedback on.