What Exactly is a College Minor? Should I Minor in Something?
Every student in college eventually decides on a college major. That is their primary academic focus, the subject most of their classes will surround, what they study above all else. The major has specific requirements and will determine what sort of degree they receive. But not every student declares, studies, or graduates with a college minor. What is a college minor anyways?
What is a college minor?
A minor is a secondary academic discipline / another subject to focus on in addition to the major.
Pursuing a minor allows you to enhance your major studies and develop a side passion. It gives you an edge intellectually by introducing you to new ideas and, depending on what you choose, and it can provide you with a professional edge, too. That extra line on your resume shows potential employers a few things.
Suppose your minor is related to your field. In that case, it can show potential employers that you have a depth of knowledge that distinguishes you from other recent graduates in your intended industry. A minor unrelated to your field may show employers that you are curious and multi-faceted. Either way, a minor indicates that you are willing to pursue a rigorous workload and commit to finishing what you start.
Drawbacks of Minors
More classes mean more studying and more homework. Between general education classes and your major requirements, a minor can be challenging to fit in for some students.
Another consideration is money. You must figure out if you can afford what may amount to an extra semester of work. Most minors require five or six classes, or about 15 to 18 credit hours, devoted to that area of study.
If your major and minor course requirements do not overlap at all and you do not have AP, IB, or community college credits, you will have to be very wise about structuring your elective classes. Otherwise, you almost certainly will spend extra time in college.
How to Pick a College Minor
Every college or university has a different process for declaring a minor.
- Select one: Select Based On Your Career Goals or Select Based On Personal Interests
- Meet with your advisor or the head of the program.
- Taken a sample class or two and made your decision, you may think you’re ready to declare your minor. Make sure you know exactly how to do that.
No matter what, you will almost certainly have to fill out paperwork to make your minor official—but this investment of your time, money, effort and brainpower can make a huge difference in your academic career and professional life.
A solid minor can land you a job. It may be that extra dimension that makes your resume and job candidacy stand out above the others.
To obtain an academic minor, a total of three years of study at a university in a selected subject is the usual requirement.
Plenty of people choose a minor later on in their academic careers. This minor can be based upon an area of interest that they discovered or complement their existing major and possibly make them more attractive in the workplace.