Imagine you have already aced your presentation on a topic and you are feeling very confident about yourself. But the very next minute your confidence dwindles as the evaluator asks you “Why did you choose this topic?”
In today’s time, choosing a topic has become very easy. Your next speech topic is barely a click away, especially with the plethora of topics available on the internet. You are free to choose any! In fact, we have listed down a couple of links you can check to find topics for your speech.
Sites you can find speech topics:
But the real challenge begins when you have to justify your reason for choosing the topic.
To understand how to answer “why did you choose this topic?”, you need to first understand why the question was asked to you.
Why do people ask this question?
Whenever you are asked the reason for choosing a particular topic, there are a few things that the evaluator assesses based on the way you answer, they are:
1. To get to know you better
Often in an interview, the interviewer might want to know more than the information provided to them through your resume.
Asking you questions like “Why did you choose this topic?” or “why did you choose this career?” would help them understand where you are coming from, and what shaped your decision to select the topic or career. It will also help them gauge your confidence.
2. To assess your decision-making skills
Choosing a topic from a vast trench of topics requires good decision-making skills. The evaluator thus tries to understand whether you made the decision to choose the topic yourself or were influenced by your family, friends, or even the internet.
3. To understand your perspective on the topic
Yet another reason why an evaluator would ask you to justify your reason for choosing a topic is to understand your perspective on it.
So, for example, if we talk about the availability of vegan meat in India, you might have your brand that is working towards manufacturing such meat or might have any other story that inspired you to start consuming vegan meat. These stories would help them understand your stand on the topic.
This makes it important for you to choose the right topic for your presentation, interview, or even your college assignment. so the question that pops in our heads at this point is,
How do you choose a topic?
While you can always go quickly on google and select a topic from the internet, curating a unique topic specifically for you will help you identify with the topic better. This would also make it easier for you to answer the question, “Why did you choose this topic?”
There are a couple of models you can make use of to choose your topic. Check it out below and use the one that suits you the best.
IRK stands for Interest, Relevance, and Knowledge. When you are looking for a topic, try to find one that fits into all the 3 categories.
A topic that interests you or a topic that you are curious about would bring in the element of passion in the way you deliver it.
But interest isn’t the only factor for a perfect topic, you must also have enough knowledge about the topic!
And lastly, the topic that you find interesting and have enough knowledge about must be relevant to the event where you’ll be presenting the presentation or speech.
We have studied about The Ws since school. The Ws are What, Which, When, Where, Whose, and How.
Let’s assume you are given a broad topic of climate change to present. You can start by understanding what climate change is? Then figure out which location would you like to focus on (Let’s assume you choose South Asia). The next couple of questions to narrow down your topic would be:
- Where in Asia has the impact of climate change been worse?
- When did the effects begin affecting the living species?
- Whose efforts helped in restoring the area concerned?
- How did the person carry out their efforts?
This would give you a very defined idea of the topic that you might want to talk about and also help you frame the outline of your speech.
PESTLE stands for Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Environmental, and Legal. The idea of using the PESTLE model is to try and understand your topic from the various perspectives mentioned in the model.
So, if your broad topic is Abortion, you might want to see if there have been any big movements and political views on the same or check the social acceptance of the idea. You can also see the technological developments that have taken place over the past couple of years or the legality of abortion across various nations.
How to answer why did you choose this topic?
All of the previous discussions bring us to finally understanding how to answer why did you choose the topic?
A few things you must keep in your mind while answering the question are:
- Be confident and back your answer with enthusiasm.
- Link your answer to either your past positive decisions or your future plans.
- Focus on the positives rather than the negatives.
- Avoid saying things that might not be an as acceptable response to the question. This would include saying that you chose the topic,
- For Financial Benefits
- Because it is what was expected of you
- Because someone asked you to
The correct way to answer “Why did you choose this topic?”
1. It Interests you
The most widely acceptable and popular answer to the question is to say that you chose the topic because it interests you the most.
2. There is not enough research on the topic
Another way of putting across your answer is to tell the evaluator that there isn’t much research in the area of your topic provided there isn’t really as much research. This reason especially holds good when you are asked why did you choose this topic while presenting your research.
While we might have all heard of the impact music has on our moods and how it is also used to heal through music therapy. however, a lesser known fact was how music helps us in maintaining social bonds. This is something I felt required a little more focus considering the lack of research on the topic and hence decided to choose this particular topic.
3. To back a point of view
For any topic there are usually many people giving in their point of view and presenting your topic by backing one of the views is a good justification for selecting that specific topic.
We see political parties promising to work towards manintaing a more greener environment but they soon fail to meet the criteria after aging control. However, what if there was an entire political party with the main focus on saving the greens. This group who also happen to be the third largest party in Australia, the Greens.
4. To make a difference
Is the topic chosen by you about some burning issue? A political movement? An issue that needs urgent attention from the public? Then stating that you had selected the topic because you wanted to make a difference can turn out as a very favorable answer!
More sample examples for answering why did you choose this topic?
After carrying out thorough research on the broad topic provided to us, I found this particular topic most intriguing and it attracted me to both learn more about it and also share my learning with everyone.
Ever since junior school, I had been interested in music. But for years it simply stayed like a hobby for me until later in my college when after attending a lecture on Psychology, I realized how music had a huge impact on our moods and emotions. This intrigued me to further dwell on the topic, gain a thorough understanding of the same and present it here so that it can reach more people.
While trying to find a topic for the presentation, I realized that people tend to look at the issue from a very singular point of view. This encouraged me to look for and offer a different perspective on the same topic which is the reason why I chose this particular topic.
After being constantly bombarded with the issue through news channels, newspapers, and social media, I decided to take a look into it. Reading through a couple of articles, I realized that the issue indeed needs to be addressed and wanted to share my own opinion or say on the topic.
People also ask:
Why did you choose this college/ university?
While in informal settings like when a friend asks you this question, you can be brutally honest about why you chose the particular college. however, if you are asked the same question during the college interview, you might want to avoid saying a few things.
The college has a 100 percent good placement report and I realized the Return on Investment is a part of your college would be really good.
- The college is well known for the lavish parties and trips taken by the students which is something I find really interesting and fun. This is the reason why I would want to be a part of this college.
- After hearing that the college has a policy of little to no attendance, I realized this is the best college.
- It is the nearest college to my home.
Examples of Correct ways to answer why did you choose this college/ university
1. Class size
One of the factors that could’ve motivated you to join the college or university could be the class size. You could either like the large class size and the diversity it brings with itself or you may like the smaller class size offered by the college which would ensure more individualized attention from the faculty.
After being a part of a huge class during my under graduation, I realized how easy it is to feel lost in a huge crowd. I was therefore looking for a college that not only offers best-in-class courses and faculty but also one wherein the class size is considerably less which would ensure that every student gets a say in the lecture. After realizing that your per class intake is 50 students, I realized this college was the perfect fit for my overall growth.
2. Specified or specialized course
At times some colleges offer courses that are specific or unique to that particular college. They might even have certain subjects that other colleges aren’t offering. If you find this to be the case then feel free to point it out as one of the reasons why you would want to be a student of that college.
I had always found immense interest in understanding brand management. However, I had always dreamed of working for a luxury brand but was not able to find a course that specifically catered to luxury brand management until I came across an advertisement for your Post Graduate Diploma in Luxury Brand Management and realized that it came with not only the perfect course.
3. The exposure provided through diversity
If the college is well known for welcoming students from various backgrounds then add the point of diversity in your answer!
Having lived in the same city since I was very young, I was looking for a college that catered to a diverse crowd as I believe diverse people broaden each other’s mindsets. Seeing the university’s emphasis on diversity and equal opportunity for all, I realized that this college is the one from where I’d want to graduate.
Are you planning to join a college because you had come across a very influential professor who happens to work there and might teach you as well? Great! don’t forget to mention them when answering “why did you choose this college?”
5. Check the college’s recent achievements
Another way you can answer the question is by pointing out the college’s recent achievements (if any). this would also show the panel that you have done your research and have kept yourself up to date with the college.
Besides the world-class curriculum and faculty of the college, the recent title of the best college in the city as per the StudentsPOV report motivated me to enroll myself in the college and be a part of such an institute that is always setting new benchmarks for itself.
Why did you choose this course?
There are 2 main situations besides many others where you may face this question of “Why did you choose this course?”
- During an interview for a job or university
- To justify your interest in enrolling in the course
Sample answer you can give for the question are:
After enrolling myself in the research methodology course during my first year of college to collect some mandatory credits, I realised my inclination towards research and pursued further courses in the field. That was also when I realized that I’d want to pursue my career in the field of research.
I had always found my inclination towards writing, however I saw it more like a hobby until we were introduced to the professional writing course in my college. Th course helped me understand the broad scope of the field and the diverse roles available for me to explore. I figured my interest in copywriting but I realize I would need proper training before joining in the workforce and believe that the course on copywriting offered by your organization will help me get a step closer to my dreams.
Why did you choose this company?
The question of “why did you choose this company?” or “why do you want to work for this company?” comes into the picture during job interviews. And while we might be tempted to be honest, sometimes being a little too honest may cost you that job.
A few things that are a big no when you are answering this question are:
- I would want to work for this company as the company is known for compensating its employees very well/ beyond what other similar companies offer.
- I just needed a job.
Instead, you might want to try and be a little more formal and polished while delivering your answer. Here are a few ways in which you can begin the answer and then follow it up with your distinct and relevant skill sets or experiences.
Examples for the correct way of answering why did you choose this company?
I see it as an opportunity to contribute my level to a fast-moving company by (talk about your skills here)…
As a fresher, I look forward to working with an organization as it offers me the opportunity to learn and bring into practice all the theoretical knowledge I have gained in the past 4 years. I believe your esteemed organization would help me achieve my goals and help me contribute my level best towards the organization.
As a fresher, I look forward to being a part of a company where I can apply the knowledge and skills that I have gained during my college days. I want to work for your organization as it has always maintained a good track of success and also encourages young minds to grow and contribute to the organization in their unique way.
I believe I have the skill sets and experience required to succeed in the role and the company because…
Why did you choose this career?
While we just discussed the answer to “Why did you do this job?”, there is a huge difference between a career and a job and hence the answer for both would be different too.
A few very common ways to answer “Why did you choose this career?” are:
1. Inspired by family or friends
Family and friends happen to influence most of our major life decisions and a career is one such big decision that may have been influenced by your family.
I had always found some interest in the field of Human Resource Management but had not explored the field until one of my aunts encouraged me to take a deeper look at field. Being in the field, made me realize the broad scope it has, and that intrigued me to pursue the field after graduation.
2. A teacher or mentor suggested you
Another influential figure in our lives is our teachers. Ask yourself, the career that you are pursuing right now or the one you plan on pursuing, are they because your teacher suggested you at some point? if yes, point it out!
During one of the counseling sessions, my professor randomly suggested that I should try my hands on Marketing as a career option rather than focusing on Finance which I initially believed was meant for me. She even helped me find an internship in marketing which changed my entire career trajectory for I instantly fell in love with the field and have been contributing to it for the past couple of years.
3. Interest in the field
Did you choose your career just because you were always interested in it or found yourself somehow interested in it? Amazing! time to say it in your answer.
During my last year in college, I had selected Interior designing as one of my minor subjects and had no idea that I would enjoy the subject so much that I would end up pursuing the field full time. I have worked with XYZ organization and later at QPR organization as an interior designer and have enjoyed every bit of it while learning to be a better interior designer every day.
4. Inspired by a book or documentary
How many times has it happened that you are reading a book or watching a movie and end up relating to a character on a very personal level?
What if we said that at times the characters are so influential that people follow in their career footsteps. If you are someone who has done it too, why not let the evaluator know? (Plus points if they turn out to be a huge fan of the show too!!)
Growing up I watched a lot of Friends (the series) and loved the character of Monica. The thing I loved most about her character was her job and how she would also be constantly making food for friends and family. Inspired by her character, I started cooking and realized my love for cooking. It further encouraged me to pursue my degree in culinary arts.
Why did you choose this research?
When it comes to the reason for choosing a research topic or even a topic for your presentation, you can about how the topic interests you or has been in news lately and that intrigued you to study it further or anything else that holds true for you.
A couple of examples to choose a particular topic for your research have been given below
1. To Raise Awareness
your research could’ve focused on raising awareness on issues like mental health or health in general, accidents, and more. All of these topics help raise the awareness of the listeners.
After encountering tons of people who would define depression as their casual once in a while feeling of sadness, I realised that it was important to asses just how many people actually understand and can define the mental health disorders which is the reason why I chose this topic.
2. To Study a Different Perspective
You might want to take a little different route than the one taken by other researchers by studying a different perspective.
3. For a more in-depth understanding of the field
Assuming you are an expert in your field, then there might not be many unexplored subjects or areas by you. Which means that you gain a more in-depth understanding of your area of study.
4. An opportunity to interact with people
Research especially if it involves taking a lot of interviews would allow you to interact with people.
5. To put forth a new idea or launch a new product
Why did you choose this source?
At times the evaluator may also ask you the reason for choosing a particular source. Having a good idea about all your sources is hence always recommended.
A few ways to answer “Why did you choose this source?” are:
1. Subject matter
Make sure all the sources you mention are somewhere related to your research topic.
So if you are writing a research paper on the subject of “
2. It is a credible source
Credible sources are the ones that are accepted by everyone because of the trust in the organization that collects the data. Most government websites and documents are considered credible sources.
3. To fit in the budget of the study
At times you might not be able to access sophisticated sources due to a very limited budget of the study. In such cases you are free to let the evaluator know in a polite manner about the limited budget.
4. Geographic coverage
Another possible reason for adding a particular source to your research is the geographical coverage.
Even though two studies might have same results, due to the geographical location, everything changes.
We chose this source as unlike other sources, this study focuses on Indian population from the city of Chandiarh and Delhi while our study focus son a similar topic focusing on a sample based out of Mumbai.
Choosing a topic for your presentation or speech is the easiest task but justifying why you chose the topic is where the task gets challenging.
Understanding why the question is being asked to you and framing your answer accordingly can help you land the job or college that you may be looking forward to get into.
Take your time to understand what is it about the topic that intrigues you the most and frame your answer accordingly. If you are not able to come up with anything at the moment, go through the examples given the blog again and see how you can frame an answer for yourself on similar lines!
For more such informative content, don’t forget to check out Frantically Speaking.