Counting On A Master’s Degree To Land Your Dream Job? We Might Have Some Bad News.

When weighing the cost of tuition, consider the likely return on that investment. Counting On A Master’s Degree To Land Your Dream Job? We Might Have Some Bad News. Giphy

News that is entertaining to read

Subscribe for free to get more stories like this directly to your inbox

For generations, common wisdom has led many high school graduates to pursue higher education in order to achieve success in the workforce. And while college still provides such a pathway for many folks, all degrees are not created equally.

The biggest bang for your buck

As most college graduates already understand, most degrees don’t come cheap. Even though there has been some effort to forgive student debt, many Americans remain mired in unpaid student loans even as they struggle to find a job in the field for which they spent those years studying.

But there’s a silver lining, at least for most of those who receive a bachelor’s degree. According to a study by the Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity, more than 75% of those four-year degrees provide a positive return on investment, meaning that graduates can expect to earn enough additional income over non-graduates to offset the cost of the education.

The same cannot be said for lower- and higher-level degrees. Associate’s degrees and the more laborious master’s degrees were identified as particularly risky compared to bachelor’s programs.

Here’s what researchers factored in

So how did the experts arrive at their conclusion about which degrees are most advantageous? They started by studying the long-term cost and payoffs of 50,000 degrees earned at thousands of institutions nationwide.

Analysts considered how much graduates earned upon exiting college as well as their salaries a decade later. Additionally, they weighed the relative likelihood of students dropping out of specific programs.

While bachelor’s and doctorate programs had the highest return on investment, just over half (57%) of associate’s and master’s degrees achieved positive results.

But the college itself and the area of specialization also played a role. Bachelor’s degrees in engineering, computer science, and nursing were singled out as most financially rewarding.

Chris Agee
Chris Agee May 13th, 2024
Share this story: