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A degree in general science provides an opportunity to study a broad range of scientific disciplines. Rather than major in one area of science, this interdisciplinary approach is more flexible and will expose you to classes such as chemistry, biology, environmental science, geology, physics and computer science. Course requirements will vary from school to school, but the idea is the same: a general understanding of the scientific world. Many use a general science degree as a stepping-stone into medical or graduate school; but also, this versatile degree can lead to career opportunities immediately following graduation.
A general science degree qualifies you for a career as a science technician. Science technicians work in laboratory settings and perform tasks such as setting up, operating and maintaining equipment, assisting scientists with research and even monitoring experiments and recording results. Many science technicians specialize in specific areas of research, such as food science, chemical technicians and forensics. Some may work outdoors as an environmental technician. The educational requirements are post-secondary training in a general science field.
Pharmaceutical Sales and Marketing
A general science education can give you an understanding of many aspects of health and science, a good foundation for a career in pharmaceutical sales. Drug company sales representatives go through quite a bit of training on the specific medication they will represent. A background in biology, chemistry and other life sciences gained in general science coursework will be very beneficial in this career path.
Science and Technology Writer
Coupled with courses in English or journalism — or a given talent for the written word — a degree in general science can prepare you to write for a science or technology publication or work as a technology or science beat reporter for a general interest publication. Science writing careers can also be found within healthcare companies.
Elementary School Teacher
Many colleges and universities design their general science degree programs to prepare degree recipients to become an elementary school teacher specializing in science. Teacher education requirements vary from state to state; student teaching and a certification exam are usually necessary. However, private and parochial schools often do not have these requirements.
Educator or Youth Counselor
A general science degree can also prepare you for teaching or mentoring opportunities outside of a school. Summer camps, community outreach programs, tutoring agencies, nature centers and other similar organizations and centers often have employment opportunities for tutors, educators, tour guides, counselors or other positions in which a science background would be helpful.
Since 2000 Donna T. Beerman has contributed to newspapers and magazines. Her expertise includes higher education, marketing and social media, and her presentations and writing have won industry awards. She has an MFA in creative writing, is the integrated marketing manager at a Pennsylvania college and founded "Hippocampus Magazine."