The 15 Best College Majors for Top-Paying Jobs

Getting a school diploma is an costly proposition. College students can get rather a lot out of the school expertise, and one of many returns for the associated fee is hopefully a good job.

However the school main has rather a lot to do with getting a good-paying job. In fact, everybody has to choose the course of examine that fits them but it surely would possibly assist to learn about one of the best school majors of 2022. And by finest, we imply the majors that lead to one of the best salaries.

We appeared on the high 15 levels that create sustainable careers. Our calculations are primarily based on common beginning wage; the median wage after 5 years within the discipline; probably the most in demand majors; projected job development fee; and whether or not an undergraduate diploma or postgraduate applications have been wanted.

We additionally needed to know what the unemployment fee was for these fields, and what the common price of the school is. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics is a superb useful resource in case you are fascinated by a school main not talked about right here.

How A lot Does School Price?

School prices range broadly from state to state and from personal to public colleges. The common tuition is $10,000 to about $40,000 not together with room and board which may tack on as much as $14,000.

Some levels, like engineering, price extra per credit score hour. Enterprise, training, and positive artwork majors additionally price extra, whereas math and sociology majors pay the least. In keeping with a examine executed by Schooling Subsequent earlier this yr, “Most social-science disciplines and philosophy are comparatively cheaper, whereas science, expertise, and pre-professional applications like nursing are extra expensive.”

In keeping with the School Information web site, on common the value of tuition and costs within the 2021-22 tutorial yr have been:

  • $38,070 at personal faculties
  • $10,740 at public faculties (in-state residents)
  • $27,560 at public faculties (out-of-state residents)

Additionally they report that room and board runs:

  • $13,620 at personal faculties
  • $11,950 at public faculties.

Nearly 84% of scholars get some kind of monetary assist. Federal grants, averaging simply over $5,000 go to 42% of faculty undergraduates. Federal loans, averaging $8,285, go to 37% of faculty undergrads. In 2021, the common quantity of scholar assist for undergraduates was $14,800. Graduate college students averaged $26,920 in monetary assist.

For a lot of levels, you might be able to take fundamental programs at group school and switch to a different school or college on your main.

Our step-by-step information to filling out FAFSA varieties to obtain federal assist for school makes the method principally painless. 

STEM vs. Liberal Arts

STEM, or Science Know-how Engineering & Math, majors are most often talked about nearly as good school levels for increased incomes profession choices than within the humanities. Labor statistics constantly present regular or elevated projected job development in STEM fields. Whereas visible and performing arts would possibly feed the soul, STEM careers usually have a considerably increased entry wage than these within the liberal arts.

What Is the Greatest School Diploma for You?

It can be crucial that you simply examine one thing attention-grabbing to you, and that matches your pure aptitudes.Be sure you examine one thing that matches who you’re, fairly than altering your self for the most important. Your school main choice doesn’t should lock you into one path for the remainder of your life. You would possibly decide a school main as a freshman, then change it the subsequent yr. That’s positive.

Good communication abilities are essential in each profession. Vital pondering works whether or not you’re doing venture administration or petroleum engineering. When selecting a school main, take note of what retains you engaged in a topic, and what turns you off. These are essential cues for achievement in your profession path.

Prime 15 School Majors for Good-Paying Jobs

  • Engineering
  • Pc Engineering
  • Pc Science
  • Healthcare Informatics
  • Nursing
  • Finance
  • Cybersecurity
  • Public Administration
  • Economics
  • Building Administration
  • Logistics
  • Physics
  • Advertising and marketing
  • Recreation Design
  • Pharmacy

Take into accout when salaries listed for every main that there’s a huge variation between states, areas, and concrete and rural facilities. We checked out a number of employment web sites to determine the beginning wage, and primarily used the Bureau of Labor Statistics for the median wage.

Plus, for useful comparability, common job development in the USA is 8%, in keeping with the Bureau of Labor Statistics job outlook index. Listed below are some actually invaluable levels. Let’s work out what’s the finest school main for you.


There are quite a lot of engineering profession paths.The start of these paths are fairly comparable, however then you definitely get to department out. There are electrical engineering, industrial engineering, civil engineering, architectural engineering, marine engineering, nuclear engineering, petroleum engineering and chemical engineering.

Each sort of engineering pays properly, and though the job development isn’t particularly excessive, unemployment could be very low. Engineering is without doubt one of the most secure levels for job markets. School college students have a number of profession choices with these majors.

Most engineering fields require a minimum of a bachelor’s diploma to get began. For instance, environmental engineers can get work with their bachelor’s, however nuclear engineers often want a minimum of a grasp’s or doctorate diploma to start. Here’s a breakdown of salaries for quite a lot of engineering jobs from Michigan Tech.

  • Beginning Wage: $64,000
  • Median Wage: $86,000
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 9%
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: No, however individuals with a grasp’s diploma earn nearly 20% increased salaries than these with a Bachelor’s diploma.

Pc Science

For this diploma, you examine the design, growth, theories and utility of pc methods and software program growth. This will embrace careers similar to pc methods analysts, info methods supervisor, or a pc methods analyst. It is without doubt one of the finest school majors as a result of it may be utilized to nearly any discipline. Software program engineering majors will all the time discover work; unemployment hovers round 2%.

  • Beginning Wage: $45,375
  • Median Wage: $97,430
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 13%
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: A few third of individuals working in pc associated profession paths have postgraduate levels.

Pc Engineering

Pc engineers additionally work on growth, design, and software program, however focus extra on pc structure like {hardware} design, synthetic intelligence, and working methods. There’s a low unemployment fee for these school majors. Careers embrace app builders, IT specialists, and firmware engineers.

  • Beginning Wage: $64,274
  • Median Wage: $128,170
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 2%
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: About 40% of individuals working on this discipline have post-graduate levels.

Healthcare Informatics

This comparatively new profession discipline has one of many highest projected job development in any discipline, at 32% (the common is 8%). This discipline combines healthcare and pc system data to create digital methods for all medical fields.

Healthcare Informatics staff develop methods that do information evaluation and processing, in addition to digital communication between healthcare amenities and information safety. Well being info privateness legal guidelines are partially driving this discipline’s fast development.

  • Beginning Wage: $58,593
  • Median Wage: $101,340
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 32%
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: 57% of staff on this discipline reported having postgraduate levels.
Getty Photos


Nursing as a school main combines STEM majors with individuals abilities, which makes it a preferred course of examine. Healthcare professionals can department off into a number of instructions once they have a nursing diploma. The very best paying nursing jobs are as a nurse anesthetist ($189,000), emergency room nurse ($116,00), and neonatal nurse ($90,000).

It has grow to be extra frequent for nurses to additional prepare to grow to be a nurse practitioner. Nurse practitioners tackle tasks just like medical doctors. Nurse practitioners return to highschool for both masters or doctoral levels and should go a nationwide board licensed examination. The sector is rising extraordinarily rapidly at 45%, and the common wage is $123,780.

  • Beginning Wage: $65,775
  • Median Wage: $77,600
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 9%
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: 28% of nurses have superior levels. You don’t want a bachelor’s diploma to be a registered nurse.


Enterprise majors and accounting majors can discover quite a lot of alternatives. You possibly can work in enterprise administration, monetary evaluation and monetary planning, or so many different jobs within the enterprise world. Finance majors additionally often work in actual property, and we are able to all see that the housing market might be rewarding. Enterprise administration is without doubt one of the hottest school majors. Unemployment in finance is lower than 3%.

  • Beginning Wage: $57,250
  • Median Wage: $94,170
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 6%
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: Just below a 3rd of the individuals working in finance have superior levels.


Top-of-the-line school majors for the present job market, and for job development, is cybersecurity. Not all faculties provide this diploma, so you possibly can search for info expertise as a school main, or the opposite pc majors talked about earlier. A doctorate or grasp’s diploma actually pays off on this discipline. A Chief Data Safety Officer could make over $475,000 yearly.

  • Beginning Wage: $72,606
  • Median Wage: $102,600
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 33% (quickest rising on our record)
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: About 25% of cybersecurity jobs require a grasp’s diploma.

Public Administration

School majors getting political science or public administration levels can go into authorities, nonprofit, and tutorial careers. They may be metropolis managers, nonprofit administrators, work in human sources, or as a public well being supervisor.

Levels in public administration are good for individuals fascinated by going to regulation college. You possibly can mix a need to make the world higher with a profession that pays properly. That is an space with extraordinarily low unemployment.

  • Beginning Wage: $44,697
  • Median Wage: $122,510
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 9%
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: Most likely. Nearly half of job holders have a postgraduate diploma.


An economics main is completely different from finance as a result of it is without doubt one of the social sciences, fairly than a enterprise diploma. School graduates with this diploma can grow to be an economist, monetary analyst, administration guide, information scientist, and extra. It’s a excessive incomes discipline that pays individuals with postgraduate levels finest.

  • Beginning Wage: $65,100
  • Median Wage: $105,630
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 13% (just a little sooner than common)
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: Nearly half of the individuals working on this discipline have postgraduate levels.
People look over blueprints while on a building project.
Getty Photos

Building Administration

Building administration is a superb diploma for somebody who’s fascinated by buildings, has good communication abilities, and may perceive each the associated fee evaluation and supplies science of a venture. It is without doubt one of the finest profession choices for bachelor’s diploma holders who don’t need to go on to get a masters.

  • Beginning Wage: $53,300
  • Median Wage: $98,890
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 11%
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: Most jobs require bachelor’s levels, not postgraduate.


Logistics is a school main that has job development beginning with an affiliate’s diploma, which has a vocational emphasis. The bachelor’s diploma emphasizes transportation administration, methods design, accounting and statistics, and provide chain administration, with a human sources element.

Logistics is one other rapidly rising discipline. The pandemic has introduced the sphere of logistics to information protection, with shortages and different points making headlines.

  • Beginning Wage: $42,000
  • Median Wage: $77,030
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 30%
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: Lower than 1 / 4 of staff on this discipline have postgraduate levels.


A physics main provides school college students many job alternatives, so long as they’re prepared to undergo graduate applications. Astronomy, meteorology, photonics (the science of utilizing gentle, similar to in bar codes and lasers), local weather science, training, robotics, gaming and the record goes on.

Physics is the examine of how all the things capabilities, together with house, time, and power. As a discipline it has an enormous quantity of flexibility, permitting you to work in tutorial, analysis, enterprise, and science settings.

  • Beginning Wage: $57,637
  • Median Wage: $147,450
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 8%
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: Sure, a minimum of 67% of individuals in physics associated occupations have superior levels.

Advertising and marketing

Advertising and marketing, promoting, and public relations careers are non-STEM majors that present good salaries, comparatively low unemployment, and don’t require superior levels. Advertising and marketing promotes and advertises items and providers.

Folks can begin working within the discipline with a highschool diploma, although a bachelor’s diploma is required for development.

  • Beginning Wage: $44,294
  • Median Wage: $133,380
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 10%
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: Probably not, solely 18% of staff on this discipline have them.

Recreation Design

Recreation design is a comparatively new school main, and isn’t supplied in all places. Different school majors for recreation design are software program growth and graphic design. Recreation design can be utilized in a number of careers. For instance, journalism and training fields are more and more utilizing recreation design rules in reporting and instructing.

The gaming market is steadily rising after an enormous pandemic associated bump. It’s a sturdy worldwide market, with even sooner job development in Center Japanese and African markets.

  • Beginning Wage: $53,568
  • Median Wage: $79,890
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 12%
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: Probably not

Pharmaceutical Sciences

Bachelor’s levels in pharmaceutical sciences result in many roles, although a graduate diploma is required to grow to be a pharmacist. One of the profitable jobs for somebody with this bachelor’s is in pharmaceutical gross sales, incomes a median of $70k a yr.

Being a pharmacist requires a Physician of Pharmacy, additionally referred to as a Pharm.D. Pharmacists work in hospitals, medical analysis, retail places, and teachers.

  • Beginning Wage: $98,000
  • Median Wage: $128,570
  • Development fee 2020-2030: 4% — this isn’t a rising discipline, however the BLS initiatives 11,300 jobs opening yearly by way of 2030.
  • Postgraduate diploma wanted: Sure

Incessantly Requested Questions (FAQs) In regards to the Greatest School Majors

There’s a lot to consider when selecting a school main and we’ve got rounded up the solutions to a number of the most frequent questions. One issue to bear in mind is that the placement of a job (or the corporate if working remotely) has a huge effect on salaries. The Brookings Institute created an interactive instrument the place you possibly can see how a lot the identical profession earns in several states.

What Main Will Make Me the Most Cash?

Physics majors who go into physics, astronomy and different sciences have a median wage vary between $93,138 and $167,402. Pharmacists with a PharmD (doctorate) common pay vary is $135,226 and $152,866 after a number of years of expertise.

A bachelor’s diploma in advertising and marketing mixed with a number of years expertise is probably the most profitable profession. Advertising and marketing administrators wage vary is $100,010 to 192,520, with the median wage at $133,380.

You’ll need to earn superior levels, grasp’s or doctorate, to make high greenback in nearly each discipline.

What Ought to I Main in if I Don’t Like Something?

A few third of faculty college students change their majors a minimum of as soon as, so begin off in an space that’s of some curiosity to you. Psychology or communications are good all-around majors that translate into many forms of jobs. You possibly can take courses in different areas till you discover one thing that appeals. 

Psychology tends to be the preferred main at most school.

What Main Is the Hardest?

Structure is taken into account the toughest, with greater than 22 hours every week getting ready for courses and doing initiatives. That point doesn’t embrace time spent in courses. Structure combines engineering, physics, building data and creativity. 

The opposite hardest majors are chemistry, engineering and math. Although in fact in case you are fascinated by these topics they’ll appear easier.

What Main Has the Most Jobs?

There’s a wholesome job market for every type of engineers. Plus, engineering fields boast good pay together with that low unemployment. Engineering careers embrace electrical engineering, industrial engineering, civil engineering, architectural engineering, marine engineering, nuclear engineering, petroleum engineering and chemical engineering.

What Is the Distinction Between Pc Engineering and Pc Science?

Each majors have quite a lot of overlap, particularly in pc coding and system design. The pc science diploma is nice for somebody heading into software program design, methods administration and cybersecurity. 

The engineering diploma would work on {hardware} design and networks, and constructing apps and different freestanding digital platforms.

What Are the Quickest Rising Profession Fields?

Nurse practitioners, a nursing specialty, is the quickest rising profession discipline. The sector is rising extraordinarily rapidly at 45% by way of 2030, and the common wage is $123,780. Prime salaries are for nurses who’ve earned superior levels and certifications, and sat for licensing exams. 

Cybersecurity and well being informatics are additionally fields which might be rising thrice as quick as the common profession development. In keeping with the U.S, Bureau of Labor Statistics, cybersecurity job alternatives are anticipated to develop by 33% by way of the yr 2030. 

Well being Informatics, the digital administration of well being information, data, and communications, is predicted to develop by 32% by way of 2030.The nationwide common of profession development is 8%, with an anticipated 11.9 million extra jobs created by 2030, in keeping with the U.S, Bureau of Labor Statistics. Phrase processors and typists (36%), parking enforcement staff (35%), and nuclear energy plant operators (33%) are the quickest declining jobs in the identical timeframe.

Which Main Has the Highest Beginning Wage?

Cybersecurity majors begin off on the bachelor’s degree with a median wage of $72,000. A grasp’s of science in cybersecurity boosts the common beginning wage to $96,000. Pc community architects and pc info methods managers have the best median salaries in cybersecurity, averaging $116,000 and $151,000 respectively.

Contributor JoEllen Schilke writes on life-style and tradition subjects. She is the previous proprietor of a espresso store in St.Petersburg, Florida, and has hosted an arts present on WMNF group radio for almost 30 years. Reporting from former employees author Susan Shain is included on this report.

Source link