5 Great Minors for Secondary Education Students
- Special Education
- Business Administration
- Sports Management
- Information Technology
Between classroom hours, licensing exams and group projects, should secondary education majors find the time for a minor? In most cases, the answer is yes. Choosing the right minor can be the difference between a lucrative, full-time job offer and years of substitute teaching. Here are five strong minors for future high school teachers.
Related resource: 50 Most Affordable Small Colleges for a Master’s in Education
Secondary education teachers spend most of their working life trying to decipher the mysteries of the teenage brain. Why are students eager to please one moment and standoffish the next? How can teachers motivate their students to finish homework, pay attention in class or plan for the future? A minor in psychology can answer these questions. Courses on abnormal psychology will help teachers understand mentally ill students, while courses in lifespan development can remind teachers of the rapid psychological changes teenagers are undergoing.
2. Special Education
Many students with IEPs are mainstreamed. Even teachers who don’t want to teach special education classes need to know how to work with diverse students. A minor in special education can provide critical background information and pedagogy for helping all students learn. It also looks great on a resume and demonstrates a true commitment to the core values of the education profession.
3. Business Administration
A minor in business or business admin teaches organizational leadership, management skills and budgeting basics. These skills are just as needed in school districts as Fortune 500 corporations. In small districts, this minor could be enough to snag a coveted role as a vice principal or even principal. In larger districts, more education might be needed to move up the school official ladder. Undergraduate exposure to business concepts will make a master’s degree in educational leadership easier to tackle. Plus, most schools are looking to increase the number of career-relevant courses on offer. This means teachers with business knowledge can fill a gap in the curriculum by teaching business or career-prep courses.
4. Sports Management
High school sports are in crisis mode. According to Forbes.com, fewer and fewer teachers are interested in staying after class to coach students. Even though coaches can earn as much as $20,000 more than non-coaching teachers, many sports lovers are walking away from the game. This creates a unique opportunity for education graduates looking for work. With a minor in sports management, a secondary school teacher can snap up a high-paying head coach position from a school desperate to find a football or basketball coach.
5. Information Technology
According to PBS.org, more than two-thirds of states are dealing with a lack of career and technology teachers. Computer programmers and scientists are lured into the private sector by attractive salaries that public schools just can’t match. This puts schools in an awkward position of knowing that students need more computer education but not being able to find qualified, licensed teachers. A minor in information technology or computer science can give a secondary school teacher a competitive edge in the job market. Graduates with a bachelor’s degree in English education can spend half their classroom hours teaching literary analysis and the rest of the school day teaching critical computer skills.
Adding a minor doesn’t mean staying in school for an extra year or taking six courses per semester. Most of these great minors for secondary education majors can be earned with just two or three extra classes.