The choice of your degree programme
The choice of your degree programme depends on many factors.
To make a good decision, it is essential for you to know about your abilities and interests.
Many prospective students ask about the chances of success in their chosen discipline. But as important as the question is, it is not easy to give an answer. Job markets are in constant transformation and thus it is impossible to give a reliable forecast for the need for qualified persons when you graduate. Besides, general forecasts might not apply to your specific situation. It is essential that you do not only consider the potential chances of success but also your personal interests and abilities.
The following questions can help you to choose the right path.
It is essential that you do not only consider the potential chances of success but also your personal interests and abilities.
Our advice: Write down your answers! Written down, your thoughts become clearer and you can gradually define them.
What are your strengths and abilities?
Which tasks are easy for you? Are there any fields you excel at?
Your strengths are not necessarily found at school. You can also become aware of them looking at your hobbies or you realise them interacting with other people.
What are you interested in and what do you do in your free time?
Often, a degree programme is hard work and you need lots of self-discipline. So, motivation is key. If you like what you are doing, motivation will come by itself. Therefore, again, what are you interested in? Is there anything you can get completely absorbed in?
What have people studied who work in the field you are interested in?
Ask friends and family to tell you as precisely as possible about their work. Ask them about how they got to their current position and how crucial their degree programme therefore was. Find people via professional organisations or networks like LinkedIn or Xing who work in the field which you
are interested in and contact them. Maybe you can visit someone who works in an environment you are interested in at their workplace and get a closer look.
If you already have a degree programme in mind, start the other way round: Where do graduates from this particular degree programme work?
Our advice: Sometimes, university websites have portraits of their graduates which might be interesting for you. Contact graduates via the alumni networks of the respective department.
Do you want the degree programme to be practical and application-oriented or theoretical and scientific?
Do you want to use your knowledge for practical application and to find solutions for problems? Or do you want to create your own analyses in order to produce knowledge and thus to close knowledge gaps in your discipline? Traditionally, degree programmes at universities are more theory-oriented than degree programmes at Universities of Applied Sciences. Have a close look while choosing your degree programme: How extensive are the theoretical and practical parts?