Defining Major

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by USNAhopeful2018, Dec 18, 2013.

  1. USNAhopeful2018

    USNAhopeful2018 Member

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    When I go to Annapolis, how do I get on track to my chosen major. Did I sorta apply to it with my application and get accepted on the basis that admissions thought I was good enough or am I still competing for a spot in the department when I get there?
     
  2. 1964BGO

    1964BGO Member

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    Generally, you will spend your first two years in what is considered the core curriculum. At the start of your second class year (junior year) you will commit to a major.
     
  3. mhc123wc

    mhc123wc USNA 2015

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    There are lots of open house tours of each major during the spring semester of plebe year. You will pick your major at the end of plebe year and begin taking the intro/basic courses fall semester youngster year.
     
  4. nuensis

    nuensis USNA 2016

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    Before you leave for spring break, you'll put in preferences for a major.

    I say "put in preferences" because there is a chance you will not get your first choice, but it's really only a possibility for Aerospace Engineering (maybe) and Cyber Operations (because everyone and their mother wants to be an Aero Engineer for some reason, and because Cyber Ops is so new they didn't even have a matrix planned out last year).

    Don't let that scare you. I have yet to meet someone who did not get their first choice major (Cyber Ops being an exception).
     
  5. IMNJS

    IMNJS New Member

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    You do not need to worry about majors until you get to school. You will put in your major preference during second semester plebe year. Nearly everyone is able to study in the field of their choice, though there is a legal requirement for a certain percentage of the class to be STEM majors. I recommend asking youngsters who are in a major you are considering what they think of it. More info on majors: usna.edu/Academics/Majors-and-Courses

    (current mid and aero major)
     
  6. USNAhopeful2018

    USNAhopeful2018 Member

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    Currently, I'm striving to be an aero engineer, but I'd be more than happy to go mechanical. I'm actually not sure which would be my primary, because while I have a love for flying, I could work in the same field as a mechE. But with mechE I could work elsewhere too.

    But thank you all for your responses, while it concerns me that I'm not guarenteed my major, I guess I have to hope for the best. If I'm truly deserving, itll work out.

    How challenging is the coursework for you, and are you happy with your choice?
     
  7. Memphis9489

    Memphis9489 Parent

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    I thought Plebes selected their major the 2nd semester of their Plebe year.

    Although, like you say, almost everybody takes the same courses the first two years. Although, some of the Youngster (sophomore) courses are major-specific. For instance, engineering majors take Statics and Dynamics their 3/C year. I do not think a Political Science major would take those same courses.
     
  8. Full Metal Bulldog

    Full Metal Bulldog Citadel Class of 2016

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    Kind of off-topic, but does USNA see alot of folks try to major in the absolute easiest thing possible so they can blow their GPA out of the water and easily obtain their #1 choice service selection? Or is GPA not so unbalanced in final merit ranking as so that matters?
     
  9. nuensis

    nuensis USNA 2016

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    There's no "easy" major. There's only majors that are easy for a specific person.

    For example, I would have a terrible time writing papers for PoliSci and some people barely scraped through Cyber last year and would have a terrible time writing a few hundred lines of code. Engineers have a tough workload, but a lot of them really thrive on the challenge and do very well.

    If you're looking to be a group three major, don't worry about the STEM requirement. The 65% is met year after year without forcing any group threes to switch. Do whatever you want to do.
     
  10. Memphis9489

    Memphis9489 Parent

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    Although it may be true that some people may find a seemingly easy major (i.e. English) more difficult than a traditionally more difficult major (i.e Aerospace Engineering), there is no question that the Engineering (Group 1) majors are more time consuming and intense.

    As I've always said, the difference between a Group 1 and a Group 3 major is like you're going to a completely different school.
     
  11. Memphis9489

    Memphis9489 Parent

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    Service Assignment (no longer called Service Selection) is not only based on grades. Believe me, the academy knows the difference between 2.9 Electrical Engineering student and 3.3 Oceanography major.

    For instance, you can be a 4.0 student and, if you have consistently received a C in the PRT (Physical Readiness Test) and a C in Military Aptitude - your 4.0 will not help you get SEAL or EOD ... or Marine Corps, for that matter.

    Although, getting good grades is always a good thing. It can't hurt!
     
  12. Full Metal Bulldog

    Full Metal Bulldog Citadel Class of 2016

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    As someone with a major and a minor (who will likely turn that minor into a double major) in liberal arts, I can ensure that I'm taking almost half the credit hours as my EE roommate....I know The Citadel isn't USNA, but they can't be that different....the animosity between 4.0 education majors getting Infantry, SEALS, Aviation, or even a commission from some of the more selective branches is definitely present, thats why I was curious as to how popular certain majors were over others.
     
  13. bbourq5

    bbourq5 Member

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    From a Plebe's Point of View

    I'm a plebe right now, and I've already been asked to enter a Major Preference. They aren't set in stone, however, until right before spring break.

    Don't worry about your major until after plebe summer, once you start really getting into the academics.

    The best advice I've gotten so far from an upperclassman on major selection is "think about what type of homework you'd want to be doing when your up at 2:00 in the morning." Pick something because you genuinely like doing that kind of work.

    Hope this helped!
     
  14. Northstream

    Northstream Member

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    Group 3

    As said by many,"Poli-sci and fly!" Group 1 major, varsity sport? Ask the upper classes and pay attention to what you are told. Be pragmatic and choose the major that allows you to succeed at USNA.

    I have been told by my mid that English majors 5 and dive at a higher rate than any other, they also represent the largest group of O-6 and higher, who can figure?
     
  15. Vista123

    Vista123 Member

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    I agree, but every one's idea of success is different.

    Once you get there (and perhaps get away from your parent's or school's influence) you may change some of your perspective. what you think you really want to do, when you see what upperclassmen studying/doing for that major you may not be so inclined and find something else far more captivating. My son was thinking one type of engineering but has since switched his thoughts to another type of engineering.

    Another thing to consider is my son says that at USNA he "really CANT have his cake and eat it too." He cant get straight As, play a time consuming sport (son's sport is 4 hours per day door-to-door no real off season) and than make it to the Calc2Honors tutor, study for Honors English, volunteer, be part of the co activities, fold his laundry, and than learn his pro-knowledge info all at the same time. (He says there are many there who can do it all!) Something has to give and as long as you understand the short term, long term and longer term effects of what you are giving up than there is no right/wrong answer. (In my opinion)
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013

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