What Is a Minor in College?

Ginger Abbot

Jul 12, 2022
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Declaring a minor in college can help complement your major. It also allows you to dive deeper into a specific topic. So, you’re probably wondering what is a minor? Here is everything you need to know.

What Is a Minor in College?

A minor is a secondary discipline. You take classes focusing on a specific topic and it’s a smaller version of your major. The amount of courses you need to take varies by school, but usually, it requires at least 18 credits. You may also be able to choose more than one minor if you have time. 

How to Choose a Minor 

Now that you know the answer to what is a minor in college, here are some tips to help you choose the right one. 

1. Determine Your Interests 

One of the first things you may ask yourself, is what should I minor in? Start by making a list of your interests. A minor can give you a chance to explore a subject outside of your major. Ask yourself insightful questions to learn more about your goals. Do you see yourself managing a team? If so, you may want to pursue a minor with leadership opportunities, such as business. 

2. Talk With an Advisor 

Once you narrow down your interests, talk with a professor from that department. They can help you learn more about the minor requirements. You can get a sense of the courses you would be taking as well. 

Also, ask about career opportunities for your minor. For example, a minor in journalism could lead to a job in public relations. Talking with professors can help you come up with a solid plan.

3. Match It With Your Minor 

When thinking about what is a minor in college, remember it should enhance your major. You want it to be helpful in your future career. Try to pick a major that pairs well with your minor. For example, you could major in communications and minor in marketing. 

These are similar fields but offer different perspectives. The communications aspect may focus on a company’s image. The media and marketing might look more into the business side. 

Here are some more good combinations to consider:

  • Accounting and finance
  • Marketing and communications 
  • Economics and psychology
  • Environmental science and public policy 
  • Business and communications 

4. Make Sure It Fits Into Your Schedule 

When choosing a college minor, make sure you can still complete your required courses. Some minors may take more time than others. For example, you will need to schedule extra lab work if you choose a science minor. Before making a selection, check with your advisor to see if your minor will create any conflicts. 

5. Find One That Enhances Your Skills

If you have an area of weakness you want to improve on, a minor is an excellent way to challenge yourself. Suppose you struggle with public speaking. A communications degree can help bring you out of your shell. Also, improving your skills makes you more marketable to employers.

Here are some traits employers look for to add to your resume:

  • Coding
  • Graphic design 
  • Content writing/editing 
  • Project management
  • Public speaking 

When and How to Declare Minors in College 

The end of your sophomore year or the beginning of junior year is an excellent time to declare a college minor. Consider announcing it at the same time as your major. Start planning early so you can complete all the necessary classes. 

To declare a minor, you will want to meet with an advisor in that department. You will also have to fill out a registration form and give it to your academic advising office. 

Best Minors for Today’s Job Market 

As technology pushes business models to evolve, here are some of the best college minors. 

1. Creative Writing

A writing degree is not just for poets and authors. Having excellent writing skills is useful in many professions, such as marketing. All companies need to create engaging content through their websites or advertisements. With a minor in creative writing, you can enter into fields such as marketing or public relations. 

Your writing skills are perfect for the following jobs:

  • Copywriter
  • Web content writer
  • Technical writer
  • Social media specialists
  • Communications director 

2. Multimedia Journalism 

Journalism has been around for a while and is the backbone of our society. Although, times are shifting and technology now plays a vital role. So, learning about the different forms of media is essential for students. 

News is now covered on a wide variety of platforms, from televisions to social media. A degree in multimedia journalism helps students learn how to navigate the industry. 

You can then enter into one of these careers: 

  • Blogger
  • Broadcasting manager
  • Communications specialists
  • News anchor
  • Speech writer

3. Urban Studies/Planning

According to a report by the United Nations, 68% of the world’s population will live in cities by 2050. Therefore, future generations must know how to increase growth and sustainable development. 

The courses can also give students a better understanding of cultural dynamics. This minor pairs well with those planning to work in health care, education, or social work. 

4. Business

Having a solid business background can be versatile for many fields. When paired with a computer science major, it can help a student fund a start-up company. It also allows you to understand how any company works and have a competitive edge in the market. Plus, the skills you learn, such as problem-solving, are valuable for employers. 

Understanding the Question-What Is a Minor in College?

As you continue in your college career, you will have to make many decisions. One is whether to pursue a minor. Review this guide when answering the question, what is a minor in college? 

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