What If… I Don’t Like My Course?


Perhaps you’ve come in through clearing and aren’t happy with the course you’re now studying, or you’ve got past the first few weeks of lectures and realise the subject you were once excited about doing isn’t for you. Well, there’s always a solution. 

Having doubts about the course you’re studying isn’t easy. You’ve invested time in the subject. You will have spent time on your UCAS application, had the build up to results day, and of course will have been asked on countless occasions what you’re going to study and where.

The first thing is that if you’re worried about your course, get it off your chest. They say a problem shared is a problem halved, and that’s because it is. An outsider’s view, whether it’s the view of a parent, sibling, friend or flatmate, is invaluable. After talking to someone else you may realise that in fact your stress was something small, which can be easily rectified.

Secondly, persevere. Don’t give up straight away! It’s important to feel you’ve given your course a proper go. However, if you’re having doubts, try and identify why. It may be that instead of single honours, you want more variety, in which case you can look at adding in a minor or choosing different optional modules each term.

Before making any drastic decisions, make sure you explore as many other options as possible in a variety of ways. Have a look several different courses online, speak to people you know doing them, whether they’re a 1st or 3rd year, go and see the faculty you’re thinking of switching to, and if you can, sit in on some lectures just to see what it’s like. It’s really important you make an informed decision! After all this, it may be that you decide you actually prefer the one you’re on. And talk to people who have had experience with the same situation, they may be able to offer some real gems of advice!

But if you’re absolutely sure you’ve chosen a degree that’s totally wrong for you, then it might be time to switch. In this case, after doing all your research about other degrees, your first official port of call is your Personal Academic Tutor, who will talk you through the process. You’ll need to make sure your A-Level grades and subjects are approved by the faculty to which you want to switch, and often you’ll have to write another personal statement, but don’t let this deter you! Here, it’s important to remember that your Tutor won’t be disappointed with you coming to them about not liking your course, you aren’t the first person who’s had this problem and you certainly won’t be the last, so don’t be shy about going to see them, it’s their job to help you after all!

People switch courses much more often than people realise, so don’t consider yourself a failure if you feel you’ve made a mistake, it happens a lot and there’s always a solution! Finally, please remember that if you switch degrees, your time spent doing the first course won’t have been wasted, all skills are transferable!


Law student at the University of Southampton.

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