Doubts about Studying - What Now?

Making good decisions takes time - and a plan! Here are some ideas of what such a plan might look like and how you can proceed in a way that is both thoughtful and focused, despite the challenges and stress of the situation.

1. Take your time

First and foremost, don't panic! Even if you feel like you're running out of time or that you've waited far too long to address the issue, try not to be hasty. Decision making is a gradual process, and a good decision takes time.

However, be sure to keep an eye on relevant deadlines:

  • Application deadlines for changing majors
  • De-registration deadlines, if you already know for sure that you want to de-register, but have already paid the semester fee
  • Apprenticeships and dual study programs usually start in August/September/October of the same year and the application period starts a year in advance!

2. Reflect on your situation

It is important that you face your situation calmly and deal with your doubts head on. Ask yourself: Why am I having doubts? What alternative works best for me? How do I see my professional future? Talk to your family, friends, classmates or advisors. An objective opinion can help you sort out your thoughts and plan the next steps in tackling your concerns.

Our self-reflection tool can also help. Are you just starting out and looking for support with your studies or planning your course work? Are you at a turning point in your studies? Wondering where to go for advice? This online tool allows you to reflect on your current academic situation. In various areas, you will not only be guided through the process of looking at your situation, but you will also learn who you can turn to under different circumstances.

3. Get informed

In addition to the information in this portal, there are many other helpful websites. Here are a few examples:

4. Effectively use waiting periods

So you've already made up your mind, but now you have to wait a few more months before you can start your studies or finally change your major? Or maybe you just need some time off to figure out what you really want? Then make the most of your downtime:

Internships: Find out if this is the career for you, get to know the company where you will be doing your apprenticeship/dual study program, use the waiting period before changing majors to gain practical experience. The Handwerkskammer Frankfurt will be happy to help you find an internship in the skilled trades if you are interested in an apprenticeship in the skilled trades.

Work: Create a financial cushion for the next few semesters. This will give you more freedom to concentrate fully on your (new) studies. 

Continuing education: There are many ways to gain key skills for your career: software or language courses, application training or project management. Learn something new, e.g. through the GU Career Service. 

Get started in your new field: Take advantage of the time now to get started in your new major. There may already be (preparatory) courses that you can attend without being enrolled in the subject. Attend open lectures, peruse textbooks.  

Certificates of achievement: If you are changing to a related subject (e.g. minor to major or teacher training to bachelor), find out in advance which modules, if any, will be recognized and try to obtain credits that you can "take with you".

5. Take action

Have you thought everything through and gathered all the information you need? Your gut tells you this is what you want to do? Then get started! If you are still unsure and need help making a decision, contact us. You can find our contact information in the right column.