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What is the correct way to ask another person about the course he is doing/pursuing at a college or university?

What course are you doing?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

What course are you doing?


What course are you taking?


What course are you studying?


What course are you enrolled in?

Google Counts:

  • "what course are you doing" university: 70K
  • "what course are you taking" university: 20K
  • "what course are you studying" university: 20K
  • "what course are you enrolled in" university: 1.5K
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do 'courses' mean subjects or course title as such? – JPro Dec 22 '10 at 15:47
Can I say MSc Engg as a course? or should I say networks, databases as courses? – JPro Dec 22 '10 at 15:48
Good question. I'd say that MSc. Software Engineering, for example, would in general be called a course. Networks, databases, etc. would in general be called subjects, modules or disciplines. – b.roth Dec 22 '10 at 15:52
coming to modules, should I say what modules you have – JPro Dec 22 '10 at 15:55
@Dusty: when you say courses, it sounds like modules in the context that you used, to me. Please correct me. – JPro Dec 22 '10 at 15:57

I suspect this one will vary depending on where you want to ask it.

"What course are you doing?" would certainly be fine in the UK, but US universities typically don't impose such rigid course structures, and I believe you'd be better off asking: "What's your major?"

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In fact, I tend to use "course" merely as a synonym for "class". I'd interpret "What course are you taking?" as asking about my class schedule for the current semester. If phrased as "What course are you doing?", though, I'd probably make the connection that this is Brit-speak for "What's your major?". – Marthaª Dec 22 '10 at 21:31

At certain universities, the correct question would be

What are you reading?

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Only in a formal setting, and only as long as the person wasn't looking at a book at the time... – Brian Nixon Dec 22 '10 at 20:10
This is not something we say in the US. "What is your major?" or "What are you studying?" is what we say here. – John Satta Dec 22 '10 at 20:17

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