How to Choose a Business Major

By Henry R. Steele - June 4, 2018
Reading Time: 5 minutes

Did you know that almost 20% of all college degrees that are awarded in the US are business degrees? That means business is one of the most popular majors. But selecting a specific business major can be daunting because there are many fields to consider.

This article provides some tips about how to select the best business major for your career interests, strengths and other factors. It also describes some of the most common business majors and what you can do in that field.

Business Major Overview

There are a lot of business degrees, and many people are getting them. So it is important to attempt to make yourself stand out from the crowd. That is why it is smart to specialize in a specific type of business major, not just general business. Now this does force you to make a big decision earlier in your education, but it will help to give you more direction and make your resume stand out from others.

The typical university usually has several types of business degree and specialities. Below are some details about the most common business majors. See which one appeals to you the most, based upon your strengths and interests.

Accounting

This is one of the best business majors you can choose. Accounting skills provide you with specific skills that you need to oversee a company’s finances. This is a competitive field, but many companies want to see new graduates with a bachelor’s degree with a concentration in accounting. This might be a good fit for you if you like mathematics, taxation and auditing. One of the nice things about this major is that if you get a bachelor’s degree in accounting, you may want to eventually get your master’s degree in accounting as well. Doing so allows you to possibly become a certified public accountant or CPA. The demand for highly skilled CPAs is definitely on the rise.

International Business

In our interconnected economy today, a bachelor’s degree with a focus on international business can be a good fit if you have a flair for working with overseas corporations. In addition to the basic core business courses, you also will likely see courses in global economics, supply chain management, international trade, strategic management, and international law. A possible option here can be a minor in a foreign language.

Finance

If you want to work in many good paying finance jobs, a business degree with a minor in finance could be the ticket. Many other business majors will prepare you to work in almost any company, but a finance major typically will work in a bank, investment firm or brokerage. A finance major will provide you with a solid overview in investment management, corporate finance, accounting, and business strategy. You also will learn about financial analysis, economics, and statistics. This is a good choice for people who want to be an investment banker, CFO or stockbroker.

Management

A major in management focuses on learning about how to use resources to achieve goals in various types of organizations. Your coursework will focus on the operations and activities that bring together financial, material, human and information resources. A management major will graduate with a good understanding of the general business management world, and will have a good set of tools to manage many companies’ operations.

Marketing

Those who want a more diverse business major that can open doors in almost any field, a marketing major is a good possibility. Marketing is a well rounded discipline that will give you a good business foundation, which also providing courses in consumer behavior, market research, branding and promotion and international marketing. Many people who have this major work in public relations, product management or advertising.

Economics

This major involves the study of macroeconomic and microeconomic principles and theories. Microeconomics looks at the economy through studying individual firms and consumers, while macroeconomics views the economy overall. Economics as a major also looks at supply and demand, how people spend within an economy, employment issues and pricing strategies.

Computer Information Systems

Studying computer information systems is about understanding the creation and maintenance of computer business systems in a company. Students with a business major in computer information systems will learn computer languages and the essentials of computer programming and design. When you are finished with this degree, you will be able to design a proper computer system or program that is tailored to specific business needs.

Healthcare Management

This is one of the newer business majors available today. Unlike a general business program, this major will prepare you to work specifically in a healthcare organization or hospital. You will learn how to manage and lead healthcare workers under you, and also how to obey all current healthcare rules and regulations.

Tips to Select Your Business Major

Now that you know about some of the most common business majors, how do you decide which one is best for you? Here are some tips to keep in mind.

Interview Someone

There are few better ways to discover what a business career is about than to talk to a person in that field. Are you thinking about majoring in accounting? Then it may help to talk to an accountant with a few years of experience. Your university may be able to connect you with professionals in various business specialities who you can interview to get a good idea of what that career is all about.

Try an Internship

Even if you do not know for sure the major you want, getting an internship can get you some valuable experience. It also can help you to confirm if you are in the correct field before you actually graduate with the degree. Even if it turns out that you do not like the field you have the internship in, you still have some solid business experience on your resume. That is never a bad thing.

Take Introductory Classes

One option for choosing a business major is to just get into the general business track, and then you can take some introductory classes in various disciplines. Perhaps you will need to choose a few electives to take in certain business specialties, such as accounting, finance or marketing.

Ask for Help from Advisors

While it is up to you in the end which business major you choose, your professors and friends also can point you in the right direction. It helps to talk to teachers who in the past have inspired, motivated and encouraged you to work hard in your academics. Talk to your academic advisers and career counselors, as well, and ask them what they think you are good at in terms of business subjects.

Join Business Clubs

Most universities have all kinds of clubs where students can participate, socialize and gain valuable employment skills. Your college’s school of business may regularly host speakers from different business industries which allows you to learn about possible business career paths.

Now that you have a better idea about the types of business majors and how to choose one, hopefully you will be able to make an informed decision about your future business career.

References

  • 7 Tips for Choosing a College Major You’ll Love. (2015). Retrieved from https://www.huffingtonpost.com/gianna-sengupta/7-tips-for-choosing-a-col_b_5993994.html
  • Career Options Major. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://business.ku.edu/career-options-major
Henry R. Steele
Henry R. Steele
Managing Editor
Henry is Managing Editor of BusinessStudent.com. He is a seasoned business professional who regularly consults with local business's throughout Southern California. Henry pursued his undergrad in Business and Economics at the University of San Diego and gained valuable life changing experience through a unique internship upon graduation.Follow on Twitter.com

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