The good news is that the wide range of interesting college programs students can choose from grows more diverse each year, making it easier for students to find a subject that they are passionate about.


Here is a list of the ten most popular undergraduate programs in the country. Note that popularity doesn’t necessarily reflect outcome or job availability.  The list simply shows the programs that have gained the most interest in the past few years, so that you may better inspire and educate your students as they progress through the admissions process.



The popularity of “dropout” entrepreneurs has led many to believe that studying business isn’t necessary. However, the course does give its graduates a number of advantages over other competitors. Studying business as an undergraduate provides the necessary training that involves the basic principles of economics, marketing, statistics, and accounting. It also helps students hone skills in planning and organizing—two key must-haves for entrepreneurs.


Social Sciences

The term “social science” covers a wide range of courses, which might account for its high popularity rate. Some common courses under the umbrella of social science include history, anthropology, sociology, area studies, philosophy, and political science. Students of social science are trained to think critically and communicate properly with the ability to handle heavy research work. Graduates of social science courses commonly pursue careers in government or academia.



A nursing program requires serious technical expertise and dedication—a combination that can be taxing but rewarding. Nursing students have to study the basics of medical training, including evaluation and diagnosis. They are then required to take on clinical rotations and other duties before graduating. A lot of opportunities await nursing students, so the difficulties of the program are worth weathering.



A common misconception with psychology is that it deals only with mental illnesses. In truth, it covers everything having to do with the human brain, including but not limited to its biology, emotions, learning patterns, cognition, perception, and motivation. Psychology also studies the science of human emotions and patterns of interaction. Those who possess an interest in the way the human brain works will likely find these studies appealing.



Any student of education studies would likely object to the old adage, “Those who can’t do, teach.” There is a lot more to this educational and career path than is often given credit. Students who wish to pursue an education that will secure them a teaching career must learn more than just the subjects they want to excel in. They are required to study new teaching theories and techniques, and they must be able to tailor their teaching styles according to the age, skill, and interests of their students. It’s certainly no walk in the park; a degree in education requires dedication, knowledge, patience, and a wide range of interests.


Biological Sciences

Biology is the study of all living things, making it a wide field of study. However, students are able to pursue particular areas of research within this field; some students within this major may focus on plant biology while others may concentrate on cellular research. Likewise, some biology students lean toward ecological studies, while others pursue animal and human biology. In any case, biology is often the best preparatory course for a career in medicine.



Many misconceptions abound when theater is mentioned as a student’s college major. It sounds limiting, but in reality, the course goes beyond just acting skills. Theater requires students to excel in communication (both written and oral skills), problem-solving, creativity, and team work.



At its core, a communications course simply seeks to teach its students the best way to get a message across. It seems simple, but it requires an in-depth understanding of human perception, methods of persuasion, theories of conveyance, and more. The course studies both verbal and visual cues and can be excellent training for those who wish to work in marketing, advertising, public relations, social media services, and government.



Engineering remains one of the most popular courses in the country. This is actually a wide range of study, with multiple branches depending on the student’s study focus. Electrical, communications, mechanical, and industrial engineering are just some of the most common courses under this umbrella study. The most popular, however, may be computer science and programming, thanks to increased focus on software development and digital services/agencies.


English (Literature)

Literature is commonly one of the most derided courses because it might be considered “irrelevant” to the real world. In reality, literature is not simply the analysis of poetry and literary works. It is the study of language and communication, with students required to familiarize themselves with various literary and philosophical treatises. They are expected to read, absorb, and deconstruct every written piece they come across—a talent handy not just for a career in writing, but also for those who wish to pursue a degree in law and marketing.


About the Author:

Kyle Gonnell is a Marketing Manager at iGrad, an innovative and industry leading financial literacy company that provides personal financial education and student loan counseling to students, educators, faculty and alumni. For more information about iGrad, click here.


How You Can Benefit from the 10 Most Popular Majors