Georgetown Study Finds the Value of Bachelor Degrees

Georgetown University’s Center for Education and the Workforce has released a new study assessing the monetary value of college degrees. The report highlights the average income of graduates, grouped by bachelor degree subjects. Findings also address the gaps in gender by degree program and average income differences by gender and race. Of the 171 majors analyzed, the incomes range from $120,000 down to $29,000.
Titled “What’s it Worth? The Economic Value of College Majors” the study aimed to analyze the connection between degrees and average incomes. While findings show that bachelor degrees do pay off, the more important findings prove the importance of picking a degree program.

Petroleum engineers top the income list with an average salary of $120,000 per year. Pharmaceutical sciences, aerospace engineering, chemical engineering, mathematics and computer sciences are all among the highest earning majors on the list. The study found that most of these college majors and careers are held by men.
Majors earning the least amount of money include religious careers, social work, arts and education. Coming in dead last was counseling/psychology; earning and average salary of $29,000. Women were found to participate in the lowest paying degrees at a much higher level than men.
Other factors included in the study are the income increases when a graduate degree is obtained, and degrees associated with the highest and lowest unemployment rates. Graduate degrees were found to increase average income across all degree fields; with increases varying greatly by degree. Military technologies, geological engineering and pharmacology were found to have almost zero unemployment while nuclear engineering and education administration were found to have unemployment rates of up to 16%.
Income gaps by gender and race were found to exist in most fields. White men earn more on average than their equally educated African American and Asian co-workers. In the case of electrical engineering African American men earn an average of $22,000 less than white men. Woman in chemical engineering were found to earn nearly $20,000 less than men; even with equal educational credentials.
See what your degree is worth and check out Georgetown’s report What’s it Worth?