The balance between selecting the wanted course vs. the "needed" course

Choosing a course is similar to deciding what you desire for your future.

This is why you need to give it some serious thought before making any decision. However, how do you really determine whether to choose the course you want or the course you need? This is a hard question to answer since students most often don’t even know if their wants or needs have determined their choices. This is even more confusing given that, by coincidence, the course you choose is not just what you wanted, but also happened to be what you needed. Regardless, the easiest way to strike a balance is by striking a balance between these two options: the wanted vs. the needed. Here is how to do it:

Ask yourself why?

This is a question you need to ask yourself whenever you are making a major decision, such as when selecting a course. So why exactly do you want to pursue the course? Is it because you are already in employment and desire a career path that compliments whatever you are already practicing? Some people will choose a course based on their love for it while others will choose the same course because they find it to be very marketable even though they don’t really love it. Regardless of your reason, your ‘why’ should be strong enough to eliminate any fears of failure in the end. You should be able to see yourself beyond campus life.

What’s your area of interest?

Your interests should partly guide your choice of a course. It should be based on your own decision and not on other people’s decisions. This doesn’t mean you shut out everyone who tries to advise you about your career path. Of course, you need to listen to them since their advice might help you to better understand why you need to consider certain courses. However, you should not be forced to do them if you are not interested.

Where would you like to pursue the course?

Universities offer a variety of courses. However, most are known for their specialty in certain areas. For instance, some are celebrated for producing the best arts students, while others are known for their technology courses. It would be detrimental if you decided to study nursing in a university that mostly produces the country’s best arts students. In other words, if you desire to study nursing, then you should consider studying at a university that specializes in the course. This will help you acquire the best quality nursing education, enabling you to compete favorably against your peers in the job market.

Generally, your needs should always complement your wants. For example, while you might want to study a medical course, you need to choose the best university from where you will pursue the course. You just can’t decide that you will pursue it in any institution that offers it since you might end up with a worthless certificate at the end of your university education. That is the only way you can strike a balance between the wanted and needed courses.

Author: Charlton Craig