Top 56 best paying majors

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Top 56 best paying majors

Top 56 best paying majors

These are the highest paying college majors of 2022

A group of graduating students opened a bottle of Champagne while posing for a photo at the Sample Gates in Bloomington, Indiana, in April 2022. (Photo by Jeremy Hogan/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Most college students hope to land a job that delivers both personal and professional satisfaction. Many students also prioritize earning a good salary. When prospective students weigh the cost of attending college with potential post-grad earnings, they may choose a major that will teach them a highly specialized skill set.

According to a tool about labor market outcomes for recent college graduates that is regularly updated by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, engineering majors have the highest early-career earnings.

“High-skilled labor is in increasing demand,” says Jaison Abel, assistant vice president and head of the regional analysis function at the New York Fed. As a result, students with more specialized, technical majors—such as engineering and computer science—see the highest starting salaries, which can be $70,000 or more.

The labor market outcomes tool from the New York Fed includes data on unemployment, underemployment, and the share of bachelor’s degree holders in each major who go on to pursue a graduate degree. This information provides a more complete picture of the job prospects for each college major.

The median wage for engineering majors is highest amongst all majors when looking at those aged 35 to 45. Chemical engineering graduates in particular make a median wage of $111,000. Other STEM majors such as pharmacy and computer science also boast six-figure or higher median wages when looking at mid-career earners.

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The most recent data from the Federal Reserve shows that the top 56 college majors with the highest median wages among bachelor’s degree holders who are 22 to 27 years old are:

1. Computer Science

  • Median Base Salary: $70,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Software Engineer, Systems Engineer, Web Developer

2. Electrical Engineering

  • Median Base Salary: $68,438
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Electrical Engineer, Systems Engineer, Software Developer

3. Mechanical Engineering

  • Median Base Salary: $68,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Mechanical Engineer, Design Engineer, Project Engineer

4. Chemical Engineering

  • Median Base Salary: $65,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Chemical Engineer, Process Engineer, Project Engineer

5. Industrial Engineering

  • Median Base Salary: $64,381
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Industrial Engineer, Quality Engineer, Production Planner

6. Information Technology

  • Median Base Salary: $64,008
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Programmer Analyst, Technical Support, Systems Engineer

7. Civil Engineering

  • Median Base Salary: $61,500
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Civil Engineer, Structural Engineer, Field Engineer

8. Statistics

  • Median Base Salary: $60,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Data Analyst, Statistician, Data Scientist

9. Nursing

  • Median Base Salary: $58,928
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Registered Nurse, Licensed Vocational Nurse, Case Manager

10. Management Information Systems

  • Median Base Salary: $58,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Network Administrator, Help Desk Analyst, Business Analyst

11. Finance

  • Median Base Salary: $54,900
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Financial Analyst, Investment Banking Analyst, Accountant

12. Mathematics

  • Median Base Salary: 54,018
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Math Teacher, Software Engineer, Data Analyst

13. Biomedical Engineering

  • Median Base Salary: $52,814
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Biomedical Engineer, Service Engineer, Clinical Research Associate

14. Accounting

  • Median Base Salary: $52,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Accountant, Auditor, Financial Analyst

15. Economics

  • Median Base Salary: $52,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Financial Analyst, Management Analyst, Accountant

16. Physics

  • Median Base Salary: $50,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: PhysicistResearch Fellow, Computer Programmer

17. Biotechnology

  • Median Base Salary: $50,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Laboratory TechnicianQuality Control Analyst, Research Associate

18. Architecture

  • Median Base Salary: $50,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Architect, CAD Designer, Project Designer

19. Fashion Design

  • Median Base Salary: $50,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Fashion Designer, Textile Designer, Stylist

20. Business

  • Median Base Salary: $47,850
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Account Manager, Marketing Manager, Market Research Analyst

21. International Relations

  • Median Base Salary: $45,880
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Marketing Associate, English Teacher, Research Assistant

22. Graphic Design

  • Median Base Salary: $45,846
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Graphic Designer, Web Designer, Art Manager

23. Marketing

  • Median Base Salary: $45,475
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Marketing Coordinator, Account Executive, Marketing Analyst  

24. English

  • Median Base Salary: $45,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: English Teacher, Editor, Copywriter
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25. Political Science

  • Median Base Salary: $45,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Law Clerk, Paralegal, Consultant  

26. History

  • Median Base Salary: $45,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Research AssistantHistory Teacher, Teaching Assistant

27. Human Resources

  • Median Base Salary: $45,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: HR Coordinator, Corporate Recruiter, HR Analyst

28. Journalism

  • Median Base Salary: $45,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Reporter, Editor, Public Relations Coordinator

29. Advertising

  • Median Base Salary: $45,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Account Executive, Marketing Analyst, Media Planner

30. Philosophy

  • Median Base Salary: $45,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Teaching AssistantWriter, Consultant  

31. Environmental Science

  • Median Base Salary: $45,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Environmental ScientistLaboratory TechnicianSafety Manager

32. Social Science

  • Median Base Salary: $45,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: HR Assistant, Management Consultant, Visual Merchandiser

33. Spanish

  • Median Base Salary: $44,256
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Spanish Teacher, Spanish Translator, Project Manager

34. Communications

  • Median Base Salary: $44,190
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Public Relations CoordinatorJournalist, Content Marketing Manager

35. Interior Design

  • Median Base Salary: $44,098
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Interior Designer, Visual Merchandiser, Drafter

36. Chemistry

  • Median Base Salary: $44,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Pharmacy Technician, Chemist, Laboratory Technician

37. Music

  • Median Base Salary: $44,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Music Teacher, Audio Engineer, Media Sales

38. Film Studies

  • Median Base Salary: $44,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Production Coordinator, Video Editor, Proposal Manager

39. Public Relations

  • Median Base Salary: $43,156
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Public Relations Coordinator, Account Executive, Event Planner

40. Sports Management

  • Median Base Salary: $43,156
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Personal Trainer, Sales Associate, Production Assistant  

41. Education

  • Median Base Salary: $43,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Special Education Teacher, Elementary School Teacher, Language Arts Teacher

42. Anthropology

  • Median Base Salary: $43,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Project Coordinator, Research Assistant, Administrative Assistant  

43. Hospitality Management  

  • Median Base Salary: $42,734
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Food and Beverage Manager, Front Desk Manager, Housekeeping Manager

44. Biochemistry

  • Median Base Salary: $42,672
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Research Technician, Pharmacy Technician, Chemist

45. Liberal Arts

  • Median Base Salary: $42,500
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Sales Manager, Receptionist, Teacher

46. Psychology

  • Median Base Salary: $42,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Case Manager, Mental Health Counselor, Sales Associate

47. Sociology

  • Median Base Salary: $42,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: HR Assistant, Account Manager, Administrative Assistant  

48. Healthcare Administration

  • Median Base Salary: $42,000
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Medical Assistant, File Clerk, Office Manager

49. Social Work

  • Median Base Salary: $41,656
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Social Worker, Mental Health Counselor, Camp Counselor
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50. Biology

  • Median Base Salary: $41,250
  • Popular Entry-Level Jobs: Lab Assistant, Paramedic, Tutor

51. Computer Engineering: $74,000

52. Aerospace Engineering: $70,000

53. Miscellaneous Engineering: $65,000

54. General Engineering: $62,000

55. Construction Services: $60,000

56. Business Analytics: $60,000

This means that if you are undecided on a college major, you are not alone. Many students enter college without declaring a major, and that is okay. Talk to your academic advisor about your interests and explore your options. There is no need to rush into declaring a major. Take your time and find what is the best fit for you.

“Dr. Andrew Chamberlain, Glassdoor Chief Economist, suggests that students who want to secure high-paying jobs after graduation should major in science, technology, engineering, or math. He notes that STEM majors are in demand by the technology and health industries, which offer more lucrative positions that are less susceptible to automation or competition.”


What major pays the most money?

50 Highest-paying College MajorsComputer Science. Median Base Salary: $70,000. … Electrical Engineering. Median Base Salary: $68,438. … Mechanical Engineering. Median Base Salary: $68,000. … Chemical Engineering. Median Base Salary: $65,000. … Industrial Engineering. … Information Technology. … Civil Engineering. … Statistics.50 Highest-paying College Majors | › salaryAbout Featured Snippets

What is the easiest high paying major?

12 Easiest College Majors That Pay › University › Majo · In this article, we’ve listed 12 easiest college majors that pay well. It’s a win-win situation, students don’t have to overly strain …

What majors have the most money?

The 10 Most Lucrative College Majors (Plus Salary Info) | › Career Guide › Finding a jo · 10 college majors that make the most money · 1. Business · 2. Economics · 3. Accounting · 4. Biomedical engineering · 5. Mathematics or Statistics · 6 …

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