Online degrees in general education are designed to prepare students for careers teaching in classrooms, particularly in lower grade levels because they require general knowledge in several subjects. General education degrees will typically require coursework in all areas of education and learning, from child development, literacy, and gifted and talented students, to differentiating instruction, lesson design, and assessment.
Degrees in general education are well-suited for students who want to become teachers and, depending on a student’s particular teaching interests, can be paired nicely with a variety of minor fields of study. Those who want to teach younger levels may want to minor in child psychology; those who want to teach English as a Second Language (ESL) may want to minor in Spanish or another foreign language; and those who want to teach a particular subject in high school, such as math or English, may want to earn a minor in those fields.
Students who want to become teachers will typically be required to hold a degree in education and get certified to teach within their state, though many states offer programs to allow people to become certified teachers even if their degree is in another field. Students will be required to complete fieldwork, such as student-teaching and substitute-teaching assignments, and log a certain number of hours in the classroom, both teaching and observing. Some programs may have ways for students to complete many fieldwork assignments online.
While online degrees in education are ideal for those who want to become teachers, the skills education students learn are transferrable to other professions, such as communications, human resources, non-profit work, or general management—patience, organization, and classroom management skills are relevant far beyond the classroom.