How do I choose a Bachelor of Science major?

With over 40 majors to choose from, you don't have to pick right away. Find out what your subject options are and how to plan your course.

There are a range of subjects and majors available in the Bachelor of Science, and you don’t have to choose your major right away.

How do I choose my Bachelor of Science major?

Your major is your chosen area of specialisation in your course – for example, Chemistry, Marine Biology, Data Science or Electrical Systems. You have more than 40 majors to choose from in the Bachelor of Science and you can choose based on what you are interested in or what career you might want to pursue.

Your major is made up of four subjects at the third-year level. These subjects will build on the knowledge you’ve gained during the first two years of your Bachelor of Science.

Profile picture of Geena Glass
- Geena Glass, Bachelor of Science 2017.
“Be open to the freedom you could have at Melbourne with the Bachelor of Science, as you are able to select from so many different subject disciplines in first year that it's very easy to tailor a degree to you and what you like.”

When do I choose my major?

You don’t have to choose your major in your first year. All you need to decide on is the general area of your interest and take the appropriate ‘subject sets’ – like chemistry, or mathematics and statistics. These will give you the prerequisites you’ll need for later in the course.

You can complete several different subject sets to explore different areas of science and to keep your major options open. There are nine subject sets to choose from, so it’s an easier choice than selecting a major.

You can choose subject sets from:

  • Biological Sciences
  • Chemical Sciences
  • Earth Sciences
  • Engineering Systems
  • Geography
  • Information Technology
  • Mathematics & Statistics
  • Physical Sciences
  • Psychological Sciences

The subjects you choose in first year will influence what majors are available to you later in your course, but you don’t need to finalise your major until the end of second year.

- Vinuri Peiris, Bachelor of Science 2019.

“When you start the Bachelor of Science, if you know what you want to do you can focus on that major from the beginning. If not, you have the ability to pick subjects you like and explore your options from there, so know there is flexibility.”

There are so many majors! How do I choose?

One of the great things about the Bachelor of Science is its flexibility. But with such a broad range of specialised areas to choose from, how do you know which major is right for you?

This is your chance to consider your dream job or what kind of workplace you’d like to be in. You might want to work in a lab conducting experiments, or perhaps you’d prefer to work with people. It’s important to consider what your values are and what is important to you.

Finding a major that genuinely interests you will make studying so much easier. This is also your chance to explore areas of science that you haven’t been exposed to previously. Don’t be afraid to dream big when it comes to figuring out what your ideal job might be and finding the subjects to get you there!

Can I do a double major in the Bachelor of Science?

In some instances, you can complete the subjects for two majors. However, only one major will feature on your transcript. For example, you might complete the subjects for a major in both chemistry and pharmacology.

You could also complete a concurrent diploma and have an additional qualification in another study area.

What if I've changed my mind?

That’s totally fine! Students often change their mind about which major they want to do. You can talk to the advisors at Stop 1 about what that means for you.

What subjects should I do to complement my major?

You can choose something in a similar area to your major to focus your knowledge or choose something different to explore another interest.

This could mean taking physiology subjects to complement a major in human structure and function, or going broad and picking up some subjects in geography, conservation and physics.

Along with your science subjects, you will also complete Breadth subjects that will take you beyond the fields of science, technology and engineering to encourage you to learn different ways of thinking.

Who can help me with planning my subjects and major?

Science Day 1 is the first opportunity for students starting the Bachelor of Science to learn about how to plan your course and what subjects are available. It’s also the perfect opportunity to meet some fellow students and chat to your lecturers.

You can get help from course advisors at Stop 1 anytime, either online or in person. Course advisors can help you with planning your course and your major, subject selection, and advice on changing course direction. There are help guides online, you can submit an online query, or book an appointment for a one-on-one chat.

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