Your studies have finally begun and you plunge into your new life with verve. Your apartment, your fellow students and the student life itself may captivate you at first. Later, when everyday life has returned, you will feel that studying is something completely different from school, and you struggle with disappointed expectations. Boring lectures, poor teaching, excessive personal demands and overcrowded universities are the most common reasons for a change of subject. If you have realized that you are studying the wrong subject, you do not need to be afraid of changing your subject. Before you make this decision, however, you should think carefully about how you want to proceed and seek detailed advice. Some students change their subjects and prefer to go with Law studies, especially after the pandemic thrived. In that case, LawMind is their choice to prepare for their law studies; their LNAT tutoring helps them achieve their targets.
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When should you change the subject?
Dissatisfaction in the first semester is normal. Changed living conditions, a difficult learning environment and a completely new attitude towards life influence personal feelings. If this frustration persists after the first semester, you should consider changing subjects or even dropping out of your studies. If you are not sure yet, an analysis of your situation will help you:
- Why are you dissatisfied with your studies? Is it because of the content? At the teacher? Or did you imagine the subject to be completely different?
- Do you have problems organizing your studies?
- Are you overwhelmed with your subject? Do you feel that you are intellectually unable to cope with the material? Maybe you always wanted to do something with computers and now you’re failing the math classes.
- Where do you see yourself in the future? Have you noticed that you are more interested in a different field of study or that you are more interested in another subject?
- Why do you think you no longer want to study the subject? Is there a specific reason for this?
- What mistakes did you make in your first degree? Are you able to avoid these in your second degree?
- Where do you want to go professionally? Does the subject make sense for your future career aspirations?
If you want to conduct the analysis before your change the subject, that matter should be taken to the student counseling. This can help you with the next step on your way to changing your subject. Before making your final decision, it makes sense to attend lectures in your newly chosen subject and speak to fellow students who are already studying this subject. In this way you can check whether this subject is really the right subject for you.
Observe deadlines and laws when changing subjects
At many universities it is possible to change the subject several times. However, if you are dependent on counselling office, you must observe the requirements of it before changing your subject. A change of subject is only possible until the end of the 3rd semester. After that, a change is only possible for a really important reason.
The first course should, therefore, lead you to the counselling office to clarify your future entitlement. Once this has been clarified, you can inquire about the application modalities, the admission deadlines and the admission requirements (free or limited) at the student advisory service. There are lots of pitfalls, especially when it comes to the admission requirements. For example, those who change subjects often opt for a course with restricted admission – often in later semesters as well. In such cases, you need to check whether you meet the admission requirements. The situation is similar with required aptitude tests or internships. At the student advisory service, you also have the option of receiving detailed advice.
In some courses, a change is only possible in the winter semester. You can use the remaining time until the start of the new subject for internships or a semester abroad.
In order not to waste time unnecessarily, you can also have the examination office at your university check whether you can credit your achievements to the new subject. This saves you valuable time, because every change of course postpones the end of your studies, so that you may lose your entitlement at some point. If you want to switch to a related course, you sometimes also need a clearance certificate that proves that you have not yet passed a relevant examination.
Last but not least: Don’t forget to fill out the application for a change of subject, de-register and submit the application to the matriculation office. Inform the counselling office and your health insurance company about your change so as not to lose your entitlement and health insurance.
Checklist for changing subjects
- Did you leave yourself enough time for your decision (after the 1st semester)?
- Have you been to the student advisory service and received extensive advice there?
- Have you attended lectures on the “new” subject and asked fellow students about the subject?
- Do you meet the entry requirements and can you change without wasting time?
- Will the student counselling office continue to give you support after the change?
- What about the crediting of examinations and seminar certificates? Do you have the option of crediting your certificates?
- Did you take care of the de- registration and the new registration?
- Do your health insurance and the counselling office know about your change?
This checklist will help you lose the fear of changing subjects and make a smooth change of subject.
Learn with motivation
To learn effectively, you need good motivation management.Otherwise, you will probably not learn at all or very little, because you simply do not feel like it. However, there are also some methods here to be motivated to approach learning.
For example, you can promise yourself a reward if you have completed your study quota the following day. This can be sometimes smaller and sometimes larger, depending on how you like it and, above all, how it helps you. So, you can tell yourself that you will receive a bar of chocolate as soon as you have studied intensively for four hours. You can also promise yourself a new shirt, a pair of new shoes or a visit to the cinema as a reward.
However, if you haven’t finished your study quota for the day, you shouldn’t treat yourself to any reward. If you still reward yourself, the motivation through a reward is of no use, as you will not change your learning behavior in this way.
Another way to strengthen your motivation is, using a study group. This can be fun and very helpful. Because if you don’t understand something, you can just ask your study group. In return, of course, you have to explain something to others. This means that everyone in the group is encouraged and challenged.So, it’s a take and a given. You can also encourage each other if one of you has doubts about passing the test. In addition, you are more likely to learn something when you are with others, as they of course also do their tasks and exercises. However, you should be careful not to fall into chatting. Otherwise, the whole study group does not bring anything either.
The regularity is at a study group also very important. It is best if you always meet with your study group at the same time each week. This also brings routine into this and you always have someone who can help you.
Furthermore, your successes that you achieve through intensive learning will of course also motivate you. Especially the beginning is difficult. However, over time, everything becomes easier. At first, you will probably find it difficult to study for a full two hours. However, after a few weeks this will also become easier. You should just stay on the ball and you will be able to improve automatically.