A career is a lifelong path that many people take to achieve personal goals, such as gaining knowledge and experience, taking on more responsibility, or earning a higher salary. But how do you go about choosing the right career, and what do you need to study to get you there? It can be difficult to choose between a variety of subjects or to narrow it down to those that align with the career path you want to pursue. But it’s important that you do.
Applying to higher education can be competitive, and you will be at a disadvantage if you do not choose suitable subjects. Students should be well informed about their subject options before making a decision.
Our guide to choosing the right subjects will help you make the right decisions for your future.
1. Take action on career choice with self-assessment tests
There are many different ways to test and evaluate different aspects of your personality, strengths, and weaknesses to find out what career paths suit you. It’s best not to rely on these tests for a definitive answer but to use them as a tool to learn more about yourself and your motivations. If they provide helpful answers, you should incorporate this knowledge into the overall picture you build of yourself.
2. Decide on your future goals to help you make your career choice
It can be helpful to make a list of your long-term goals to better understand what you need to do to achieve them. This can include both personal and professional goals. For example, do you hope to one day become the CEO of a company? Or maybe you just want to own a comfortable home?
It’s essential to be clear about who you are before exploring your career options. Take some time to think about your interests, values, traits, and what motivates you. This will help you narrow down the list of careers or industries that are right for you.
Decide what your priorities are. Is it the salary you earn and the perks that come with a job? Perhaps autonomy, a healthy work-life balance, and flexibility are what you envision for your future. Are you satisfied with a fixed role, or do you want a career that gives you room to grow?
Your list can help you be more intentional about your career choices. For example, if you know you want to work in the same industry ten years from now, research which industries are growing steadily and which are declining due to automation or other factors. This will give you insight into jobs that have scope for career development in a particular field.
3. Research the careers on your shortlist
Once you have assessed your strengths, skills, and interests, you should have a list of occupations to consider. Your passion and talent can lead you to many different careers – including ones you may never have heard of. Use resources around you to research them: the internet, career counsellors, friends, and family. Job shadowing can also give you a real-life sense of whether a career meets your expectations.
Choosing the right career can be trial and error, so It’s a good idea to list at least seven career choices. Lots of careers could be a good fit for you. Once you have nailed down a list you can now investigate where to go to further your education for these occupations and what subjects (and grades) you need to get into them.
4. Determine the subjects you need to have under your belt
The courses you take will have a long-term impact on the careers open to you later in life. Where do you start? There are many things to consider when choosing school subjects. For example, if you decide to drop all science subjects or continental languages, it will limit your career options.
Business subjects, on the other hand, are a different story. In most business courses, all subjects are taught assuming that students know nothing. So if you’re still trying to figure out what you want to do after graduation, taking various business courses can help keep your options open.
If you can’t decide on a career choice and are under pressure to choose your subjects, keep your options as wide open as possible.
5. Make sure you take the correct number of subjects that you need
There is no blanket answer to the question of how many subjects you should take. The decision ultimately depends on what is best for the individual student, considering factors such as their strengths, interests, and capacity. Get advice on what subjects, and how many, will get you the number of points you need to get into the area of study you’re interested in.
6. Take a balanced approach to choosing your subjects
When choosing what classes to take in high school, consider those you really like and why you like them. When students enjoy their subjects, they are more likely to study them and achieve better grades. Second, if you enjoy a subject in high school, you will most likely enjoy it in a similar field at university and eventually find a job relating to it.
You should also consider what you enjoy doing outside of school. Your hobbies and interests can often shed light on the types of subjects you would like to learn more about.
If you are having trouble deciding on a particular subject, here’s a starting point. Talk to your friends and family about what you’re good at. Also, consider your current results and which modules you enjoyed the most.
Need help choosing the right career for you? Not sure how to choose a career? Find out what might be a good fit for you with CareerFit. We offer scientifically proven online assessments to help you head in the right direction. With over 35 years of experience, we have helped thousands of people find their ideal careers. Our tests are easy to take and include aptitude tests, an interest inventory, and a personalised report with 16 careers to choose from.
So why wait?
Start your journey today with CareerFit.