Make a well informed decision when deciding (or re-deciding) on a college major. University Exploration offers a step by step, systematic process for students to learn about themselves and their options for a major at RIT. This takes time and effort and a bit of energy and enthusiasm, but the results will be worth it.
Start your exploration now by clicking on the topics below.
University Exploration students are assigned an advisor who will assist them every step of the way through the exploration process. This advisor will know his or her students personally as they transition through college and discover their final major.
Role of the Academic Advisor:
Role of the Student Advisees:
This required, one-credit hour course focuses on individual/personal assessment. Students explore their interests, values and skills through assessments on Focus 2, a web-based major and career exploraiton tool.
Through class led discussions, reflective activities, and individual appointments, students use their assessment findings to research potential RIT majors and career fields.
Sample Syllabus for Career Exploration Seminar:
|DATE||CAREER EXPLORATION SEMINAR - CONTENT||UNIVERSITY EXPLORATION ADVISOR - CONTENT|
1) Introduction to course
2) Syllaubs overview
3) Course expectations
1) What are we here each week?
2) Drop/Add period requirements
3) Chocolate Chat & UE Newsletter
|Week 2||Future of work||
1) Review the University Exploration advising syllabus & advising expectations
2) Meeting types and needs
3) How to request an academic advising meeting
|Week 3||Interests & Leisure||
1) Steps to the Major Exploration Process
2) Progress check-in with advisor
1) Academic Alerts open
2) Academic Support Center: ID your needs
Focus - Values
|The RIT Colleges: On-Line Bulletin|
|Week 6||Skills and Academic Strengths||
1) Enrollment appointments begin - Time to sign up now!
2) Shopping carts / SIS / Using the systems
3) Perspective search handout
|Week 7||Skills and Opportunities||
1) The AAR Degree Audit / On-Time graduations
2) The Parts of the RIT Curriculum: Majors, General Education, Writing, Immersion, Minors, Doubles, Wellness, and more!
1) Academic alerts round two - Personal check-in time
2) Stay Strong! Persevering in classes
Career decision making
|Re-Thinking your original major interests: Are you in too deep? Ready to choose? Why did you pick what you did?|
1) Goal setting and luck: Planned Happenstance
2) Review Final Paper
1) Preparing for departmental meetings
2) Application Deadlines for specific colleges and majors
|Week 11||Guest speaker: What employers want||
1) Academic Withdrawal: Implications of a W
2) Last call for enrollment meetings
|Week 12||Getting to "decided" - current student speaker||
1) Enrollment week
2) Open forum
Informational Interviews - Results
1) Faculty evaluations
2) Spring Journey: Exploration continues beyond fall
3) GPA expectations & possible outcomes / Satisfactory academic progress & Financial Aid
4) Open forum
|Week 14||Class presentations||
1) Your final presentations
2) Final preparations / Math Crash
One of the most important components of deciding on a major is experiencing the major or a content area through "sample courses". Here is what a sample schedule of an exploring University Exploration student looking at programs across three colleges might look like and why.
Sampling three majors that span three colleges:
Possible Sample Options:
University Exploration advisors get to know their student advisees well and this one-on-one relationship helps the advisors select sample courses that best fit their advisees’ interests. Many sample courses also satisfy university general education requirements.
Once students translate their career assessments into possible RIT majors, students will start their major research by identifying majors of interest in the Undergraduate Bulletin.
Completing a "Pros/Cons" worksheet for top three majors of interest helps guide a student through a process of exploring what they may like and dislike about a program, often leading to a list of questions for a department chairperson such as "What type of job will I have with a degree in Motion Picture Science or Environmental Sustainability, Health and Safety?"
Once students have narrowed down their interests, identified a few programs of study, and completed a Pros/Cons or Department Meeting Prep Sheet, meeting with departments will help clarify and validate interests. This referral to a department gives students the opportunity to ask questions about careers, program requirements, and the process for changing into that college major.
In most cases, when students are ready to apply to a major it involves completing one simple form, a change of program form, which they then submit directly to their academic advisor in University Exploration. There are a few majors that do require supplemental application materials or they may have artistic portfolio requirements as well. A very small number of majors may also mandate fall starts. The advisors in University Exploration are all aware of these details and effectively communicate them to their student advisees. It should be noted that students are also advised to research a “Plan B” major should they not be qualified for and accepted into their first choice major.