5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Choosing a Course

"What course should I choose?" is a question many students ask themselves as they look at the seemingly endless variety of programmes out there. Choosing the right course can be tricky, and while some students may have already set their sights on what they want to pursue from the get-go, others may struggle.

The chosen course will have a substantial impact on the student's academic and professional career. Hence, it is safe to say that no one should settle on a course with no concrete thought given to it, as there is a risk of them realising only later on that they made the wrong choice.

So, how do you decide on a course?

To help you make the right choice, here are five essential questions you should ask yourself:

1. What interests me the most?

Your study tenure will definitely be more enjoyable if your chosen course piques and matches your interests. Not to mention, having a genuine interest in the course you've selected will increase productivity and help you focus on the course modules. Being stuck in a programme that you're not interested in will most likely bore you. While a lot of different courses may interest you, asking yourself this question helps you narrow down your choices and make a more informed decision.

2. Why do I want to study this course?

The big question is always "Why?". It could be that the course is something that interests you and makes you happy, or it is required for you to secure your dream job, or it guarantees a variety of job opportunities in the future of a fast-paced workforce. Whichever reason it may be, you should always have a solid rationale for why you are choosing your intended course.

3. Do I want to pursue my passion or be practical?

The age-old question for students while choosing a course is: should I follow my head or my heart? Whether you choose something that genuinely excites you and pushes you to live your passions or you opt for a programme that leads to a more secure career path, ultimately, decide on what inspires you the most. Combining passion and practicality is a good move when choosing a course, but at the end of the day, what's most important is that you feel comfortable in your decision.

4. What are my career opportunities once I graduate?

In choosing a course, it is helpful to think about the career opportunities that will be available to you once you finish your studies. Is this something you can see yourself doing for a long time? Is this career sustainable, and will it continue to be relevant in the future? Your chosen course can affect your job prospects, so it’s always a good idea to have some sense of what the career options are.

5. Am I choosing this course for myself or others?

Most of the time, we might feel that choosing a specific course and landing a "typical" job is what society expects us to do. We're expected to have a certain type of career or study a certain course because it is what other people consider "successful". While taking advice from others isn't necessarily a bad thing, it is not always the best move considering that you'll be the one taking the time and effort to study.

So before you sign on to a programme, ask yourself: "Am I influenced by others about this decision?", "Do I really want to study this?", "Will this path help me achieve my most fulfilled self?" You'll be surprised by how your gut feeling has already given you your answer!

Choosing a course is a big decision that requires a lot of thought and consideration. By focusing first on yourself and where your interests lie, you'll be able to find a course that not only excites you, but also allows you to play to your strengths to achieve your career goal.

If you haven't yet decided on a course, fret not! Singapore Institute of Management's helpful Student Advisors are always ready to help you make the right decision.

Don't hesitate to schedule a call with us to discuss the right 100% online postgraduate programme for you!