The most useful minors with a degree in Science are minors that complement the major and make graduates more attractive to future employers. Therefore, students looking to obtain a Master’s in Science Education need to carefully consider which degrees they want to get as an undergraduate.
While a double major is always possible, most students choose to get a major paired with a minor. Students who know they want to major in the sciences may be left wondering about minors that complement a degree in science. So, check out our five best college minors to pair with a science degree of any variety.
Minors That Pair Well With Science Degrees
Many universities have a wide array of minors they offer.
- English or Communications
Students wanting to get a Master’s in Science Education are often best off taking a minor in education. An education background can help scientists better present their findings and theories to others and adequately prepare them to be a teacher in their field.
Depending on the grade a student wishes to teach, they should specialize their education minor to better tailor their degree towards teaching their desired age group. An education minor opens the door for students to get their teaching certificate requirements, including student teaching. All states provide ways for someone who did not major in education to get a teaching certificate. You can search for your state’s licensing credentials on the US Department of Education website.
Other similar minors include:
- Environmental Science
- Environmental Studies
- Environmental Issues
2. English or Communications
English or communications is a good minor to pair with a science degree. This is because courses in these subjects teach students key skills necessary in scientific work, including writing, verbal communication, and critical thinking skills.
Writing skills are essential in the sciences because scientists must write error-free papers and persuasive grant applications for funding. Verbal communication skills are essential as well because scientists need to be able to give effective presentations to report their findings.
Other closely related minors include:
- Creative Writing Minor
- Multimedia Journalism
- Communication Studies Minor
- Media Planning
- Digital Marketing
- Creative Expression
3. Business Studies
A minor in business studies is an all-around good degree choice for most students. Business students learn the basics of accounting, management, and marketing. Business programs also seek to teach leadership skills, which are useful for scientists who want to be in charge of research teams. Additionally, business classes teach students analytical thinking and soft skills like communication and collaboration.
According to the New York Times, a college minor is most valuable when it creates a certain niche that allows a college student to stand out. So, this minor is an excellent complement to scientists who want to work in a business environment.
Other closely related minors include:
- Business Management minor
- Business Administration
- International Business
- Non-Profit Administration
Is mathematics a good college minor? Yes, it is an excellent minor for students majoring in a non-math program. A mathematics minor makes degree credentials more attractive to a future employer and helps prepare students for graduate study. In addition, a minor in mathematics is an excellent choice for students who math or wish to conquer their fear of numbers.
Mathematics plays an integral role in all scientific disciplines and is even more important to some than others. For example, physics often requires extensive mathematical computations and knowledge. Mathematics can also be helpful for students who know they will significantly use statistics in their scientific work. This all adds up to make mathematics an excellent choice for a minor to pair with any science major.
Other similar minors include:
- Data Analytics
Technology minors also pair exceptionally well with science degrees. Scientists heavily utilize computers, electronic networks, scientific equipment, and other technical infrastructure to do their jobs. Even students who want to go into teaching benefit from a minor in technology because it is often used in education to convey topics to students. Examples of technology minors that work well include computer science, data science, and information technology.
One of these technology minors increases their job market value in various industries. Tech students develop creativity and problem-solving skills that they can apply to many different settings. It also paves the way for future careers in computer science or data science.
Other similar minors include:
- Web Development Minor
- Computer Programming
- Information Technology minor
- Computer Science minor
Some other social sciences minors include:
LGBTQ Inclusive Curriculum or Queer Studies minor
A minor in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) studies examines the identities and histories of gender-variant people and the LGBTQ community. In addition, it looks at the social constructs of sexuality and gender and ways to remove related bias in education, work environments, healthcare, and community organizations.
Public Policy minor
Courses in a public policy minor examine the substance of public policy. Students learn the purpose of public policy, how policy is made, and how to evaluate its effects. In addition, students gain a greater insight into the social, economic, political, and legal forces that shape public policy.
Social Work minor
A minor in Social Work familiarizes students with the social work profession. Students learn about major social welfare programs and the social welfare systems in the US. This minor pairs well with a sociology, psychology, or political science degree.
Performing Arts Minor
Performing Arts minor explores dance and musical skills through applied practice. Students participate in orchestra, choir, dance groups, and jazz band. This minor shows a well-rounded individual and complements majors like biology and math.
The Psychology minor adds additional training for students majoring in science, math, statistics, and research methods. In addition, students learn the principles of behavior and cognition and how to use them to understand individuals and their actions.
Students in a sociology minor learn about the organized social structures of families, work, communities, and modern nations.
Foreign Language Minor
The undergraduate Foreign Language minor is for students interested in teaching a foreign language, working in another country, or working with individuals who speak a different language. This minor pairs well with almost any major. However, it may be instrumental for students who major in business or a healthcare-related field.
Political Science minor
Political science studies political structures, processes, and policies of governmental institutions. It is a diverse field that includes political theory, international relations, public policy, and research methods. In addition, students focus on classic questions of how nations and societies balance freedom, order, and social justice.
What is the Purpose of a Minor?
A minor is an academic field college students can formally study. However, it is secondary in importance to their bachelor’s degree major. While a major is mandatory, declaring a minor is optional. A minor requires additional classes. But if students plan their path early, they take minor classes instead of electives.
So why would anyone add requirements to their graduation checklist? Minors provide an opportunity to learn more about an area of interest. Sometimes it is related to a student’s major, other times, it is not. And minors are much less demanding than majors and typically consist of less than ten courses.
Why Does a Student Declare a College Minor?
There are several reasons students might want to declare a college minor. First, the best college minor will complement a college major and make a student more desirable for a job. For example, a graduate with a degree in Social Work may be more desirable to an employer if they have a minor in a second language. Or computer science majors who minor in political science demonstrate they are well-rounded individuals.
Sometimes, a school does not have the major a student wants to study, so they choose the closest thing they can and then pick a minor in their area of interest. This happens in smaller schools with insufficient resources to have more majors. But it also happens with newer fields. For example, finding a bachelor’s degree in nanotechnology is not easy. However, you can find many more schools that have a minor in them.
Another reason a student may choose a minor is hesitation about a degree choice and career path. A minor allows students to take classes necessary for a future career in a second option, should the first option change. For example, a student may be undecided about a degree in anthropology versus psychology. If they declare one a major and one a minor, they can take required classes in each discipline until they decide. Admittedly, this is not ideal, but it happens.
Does Your Minor Need to Relate to your Major?
If you major in computer engineering, you may think a math minor makes the most sense. However, your minor is a great way to broaden your mind and explore topics of great interest that you may not necessarily want to make a career out of. There’s nothing wrong with a major in engineering and a minor in art. The diversity of your skill set and education may help set you apart from others and give you unique insight into problems.
How Many College Minors Can You Have?
Most people are familiar with the concept of a double major. This is when a student chooses two majors. Similarly, students can also choose a double minor. And if the courses relate to each other, some of the class requirements may overlap.
Depending on your school, different policies may limit or encourage the number of minors a student can choose. However, it is best to keep your minors under three. You don’t want future employers to think you lack focus.
Should You Double Major?
Some students interested in multiple subjects decide to double major rather than choose a minor. There are advantages to choosing a double major versus a minor. First, you can fully explore a subject, and it could help you stand out from other students in a competitive atmosphere.
However, double majoring is a difficult balancing act. If your grades slip, it may add more time to your graduation. A double major also limits your ability to take elective classes to round out your education. Before you decide, contact the academic adviser and help them evaluate your ability to handle a double major.
How Do You Choose a Minor?
Of course, any minor a student chooses to pair with their major should vary depending on the career the student wishes to pursue. Minors are most advantageous when they directly complement a student’s major and improve career prospects. For example, many colleges offer urban studies and planning as a major. However, a minor also works with a degree in education, economics, social work, or public administration.
- What Complements Your Major?
- What Makes You More Marketable?
- What interest are you?
- What’s in Demand?
A strong choice of minor will improve any student’s chances of getting into a Master’s in Science Education program. Below are some examples of excellent major and minor pairings.
- Accounting major with a Sustainable Development minor
- a Math major with an Environmental Science Minor
- Business Majors with an Art History minor
- Graphic Design major with an Urban Growth minor
- Public Health major with a Foreign Languages Minor
Choose a Minor to Showcase Career Skills
A broad undergraduate degree in Psychology or History prepares students for many career paths. At the same time, these majors are so comprehensive they don’t reflect any specialized skills. If you have a general degree, you can strategically pick a minor to help showcase your technical skills.
Your College Path
A minor is an excellent option for many college students. However, declaring a minor is only for some. For example, struggling students may need to focus solely on their major, while an ambitious student with a set career path may want to double major instead. A minor can give students and future leaders crucial insight that helps them understand the cultural dynamics of society.
A minor is a good complement to your major. But it can also be an essential part of your college experience. It can increase your knowledge base and enables you to solve all kinds of practical problems.
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