General education is a broad type of education taken by many students who have not yet decided their field of interest. High school is a prime example of a general education program where a student is prepared comprehensively in subjects like reading, writing, social studies, mathematics, etc. so that he/she has no problem in adjusting to college life and exploring new fields of study. However, some people continue with general education courses even in their college as they either have difficulty in deciding their specialization or they just want to explore a variety of subjects and broaden their repertoire of skills to efficiently prepare them for entering a profession in academics.
Scope of General Education Degrees
General education degrees are usually offered at the associate level as a bachelor degree requires a specialization known as a major. However, people planning to enter an academic career can opt for bachelor programs in education that exposes them to a number of general education courses; afterwards, they can go on to do their masters in specializations like curriculum & teaching, elementary education, educational leadership, etc. Many schools now offer online general education degrees that are very convenient for people with families returning to their studies after a hiatus as they can study in their own time and, therefore, manage their family lives while fulfilling their wish of achieving more education. Moreover, some schools also offer bachelor programs in general studies that also consist of general education courses. Such programs are especially tailored for adult learners returning to their studies after a break and train them in several subjects to prepare them to pursue multiple careers in fields like human services, social science, international relations, arts & humanities, etc.
People with general education teaching degrees usually enter a career in academics imparting their broad skills in several subjects to their students. They can enhance their resume by doing teacher training certifications or master level programs in education and achieve higher-level jobs in the field of academics. People with a bachelor in general education/studies can either opt for higher education or choose from multiple career paths due to their wide range of skills.
What can you do with this degree?
A degree in general education could open up doors to diverse career opportunities. You could work as a teacher or even pursue advanced degrees in different fields such as law, sales, management or sociology. The main purpose of a general education degree is to equip students with a broad knowledge base and an understanding of general courses. Here are a few suitable job paths and income data provided by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (2014):
Elementary school teacher
Median annual income: $54,120
Secondary school teacher
Median annual income: $56,310
Insurance sales agent
Median annual income: $47,860
How long does it take to get General Education Degrees?
You can only opt for a general education degree during your associate's degree. During your bachelor's degree, you have to specialize in a narrower field. If you have opted for an associate's degree in general studies, you can get your credits transferred to a bachelor's program and choose to specialize at a later date. Hence, a general education degree will last for two years - the same amount as an associate's degree.
What are the requirements to get General Education Degrees?
To get admitted to a general education bachelor’s program, candidates must hold a high school diploma or equivalent degree. Some universities may require test scores such as the SAT score. Once you gain admission, you will need to complete a minimum of 60 credit hours in most universities. Students can then choose if they are interested in language, science or math courses and plan their program accordingly.
How much can I make with General Education Degrees?
With a degree in general studies, students are not limited to an industry and can get a variety of different jobs. Some of the most common jobs after a general education degree include becoming an account/editorial director or a sales manager. Your wages will be determined by the kind of occupation you hold. The median annual wage for sales managers as of May 2018 was $124,220 per year as per the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Frequently Asked Question(s)
Q:My search on General Education degrees took me to Composition course. Can you tell me more about it?
A:You often come across the reference of various courses and programs relevant to the field when going through search such as General Education degrees. Composition course is among the most common courses included in various relevant programs. In this course the students are taught basic writing skills and their argumentation skills are developed.
Q:What main subjects will I cover in an a.s. in general education?
A:In an A.S degree in general education, you will cover important subjects such as the following: mathematics and sciences, health and wellness, arts and humanities, communications in English and foreign languages, sociology, global awareness, critical and analytical thinking, and professional development. It is important to remember that the coursework may vary a little from college to college.
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