Will I Make More Money with a College Degree?

You may desire to earn a college degree to learn about a specific industry or area of study, but ultimately the purpose of spending money to earn a degree is to earn more money throughout your lifetime. If you are interested in going back to school to change your life and travel in a new and more rewarding direction, you must consider the cost of earning a degree. In addition to cost, you should learn whether or not your degree will offer a return on your investment once you enter the field and get established. If you are asking whether or not a college degree will help you earn a larger salary than if you did not have a degree, here are the facts you will need to consider:

Average Salaries of High School Graduates vs. Salaries of College Graduates

The easiest way to determine if college degree holders make more money than people without degrees is to reference the statistics. According to the US Census, not only are high school graduates more likely than degree holders to be unemployed, they are also more likely to make a smaller income. If you are interested in earning a degree this could give you something to look forward to.

According to the data collected during the census, it was found that having a degree payoffs in the form of monthly income. The data showed that people with a bachelor’s degree earned an average of $5,400 per month, people with a Master’s earned $6,700 per month and high school graduates with no college degree averaged $3,200 per month. The major difference in monthly income adds up when you consider the annual salary differences.

Income Differences From Field to Field

The data also shows that you are likely to earn more when you have a degree, but you need to consider what type of degree you plan on pursuing. Some degrees in specific fields are more sought after than others, and this is primarily because of the demand and growth in the field.

If the field is shrinking and there is not a huge need for new college graduates, it could be possible that you will not earn as much as other individuals who have a bachelor’s degree in a rapidly growing sector. Fields like technology, healthcare, and marketing are always growing. While fields in manufacturing, textiles, and communications could be on the decline. Do your homework before you choose any major.

Earning a Return on Your College Investment

You may earn a larger income with a college degree, but how much of that income will go towards paying off your student loans (please also see: Cheapest Online Colleges for Bachelor’s Degrees 2014)? If it costs you hundreds of thousands of dollars to earn a degree and you are in student debt, you have to designate some of your income to pay down your loans. This is why you should always look for college degrees where you will earn your investment back fast. Currently, the best options are in the fields of accounting, information technology, human resources, economics, and health administration.

In most cases, you will make more money when you hold a valuable college degree. In addition to the salary, you will earn better benefits because you will have greater bargaining power. Keep this in mind as you choose which degree you want to earn and make a good long-term choice.