Double degree

My double degree – Is it really for me?

I embarked on my university adventure in 2015 wide-eyed and full of eagerness. I was confident that I was studying the right degree for me – a Bachelor of Business/ Bachelor of Media & Communication. I had plans for my future and this double degree was going to help me achieve those goals – wasn’t it?

After finishing semester 1 of 2015 I had serious doubts as to whether this double degree was for me. The workload or juggling two sets of sometimes vastly different subjects was not the issue. I couldn’t help but feel that I wasn’t totally happy. The latter of the two degrees didn’t excite me at all, I had little motivation to complete assignments or go to lectures/tutorials. I had heard that first-year subjects can tend to be a little unappealing and broad – but I wasn’t feeling like this in regards to my business units. After some thought and lots of discussion with those close to me, I decided to finish the year and then revisit the issue. Fast forward to November 2015 and I was sure that this double degree combination wasn’t for me. It was still hard to ‘let go’ of Media & Communication, after all, I had invested one whole year into the degree, however, I applied to change to a sole business degree. This change was approved in January of this year and I can tell you that it was a welcome relief. I feel immensely better going into Semester 1 and am positive that I can now invest everything into this degree in order to get the most out of my university experience as a whole.

If you feel you’re being faced with the same dilemma here is a guide that I promise will help.

  • Ask yourself:

    1. Am I equally as excited by both degrees?
    2. Can I seriously see myself combining these degrees in the future to benefit me? Where do I see myself going?
  • Talk to someone

    Whether it is a family member or someone from the university, they are all there to help! It’s amazing how valuable being able to ‘flesh it all out’ is! Talk to someone who you can bounce ideas off and who is able to give you sound guidance – it’s beyond helpful!

  • Don’t get stressed!

    Whilst this is easy to say and not always easy to do try to remain calm and logical whilst making your decision.

Lastly, just remember that whilst this is a big decision that could affect your future it’s not irreversible! You can always choose to return to a double degree or you might want to consider gaining credit for the units you did complete as electives. All in all, try not to put too much pressure and make the most of university! You’ve got this!

Phil Dumphey

Bachelor of Business (Public Relations, Marketing)

1 Comment

  1. As someone who has both changed courses and graduated with a double degree, I can tell you this is accurate. I started out doing Engineering and IT, but after a year I switched from engineering to business. I wasn’t devoting enough time to the Maths subjects in Engineering because in all seriousness I wasn’t passionate enough for it.

    I commend you for sticking it out another six months, because we all have times during whichever course you take where you wonder if you’ve done the right thing, and now you know its not the best thing for you at this stage. The only advice I can offer is not to give up on the idea completely. For me, Economics and IT was a great mix, as was my work experience in GIS mapping technologies. Econ taught me the methodology for business analysis, and IT taught me how to analyse data with those methodologies using computers. That’s really the best way to go about doing a double degree – for me, business was always my primary degree, while IT was the secondary degree to help elevate my first.

    Perhaps once you’ve gone through your business core subjects and settled on a major, you can always look into what secondary course might serve as a good compliment to your first. Each subject has a different natural compliment – accounting can be combined with law (although if you want to be an accountant a dual degree is probably of least benefit since just the accounting degree is fine), marketing can be combined with journalism, economics and finance can be combined with IT or maths, international business with a foreign language subject and so on.

    A double degree makes you more than doubly employable, because not only can you apply for jobs in two fields but the relationship between the two means you have a greater ability to solve problems; at the same time, it’s way more important to at least have one degree that you really love than be miserable doing two.

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