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This degree subject will earn you the most money

15th June 2015

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First year university students arrive bright eyed and bushy tailed ready to chase their passion and turn it into a career - but inevitably, student loans and financial responsibilities of adulthood can put a damper on passionate aspirations.

With the average graduate’s debt reaching £44,000, students are now more than ever being advised to consider the long-term affects of their educational journey - and it’s no secret that some degrees prove to be more fruitful than others.

In a study of over 55,000 anonymous individuals, compiled data suggesting the average salary for certain areas of study at various points after graduation. Economics majors, you’re in luck. When exploring the average salary five years after graduation, economics majors came in first at £45,000. Now you all can sigh in relief. But an evaluation might be worthwhile before deciding on a major. The economics salary average was an entire 80% more than the lowest group - of fine arts and design graduates. These creative grads earn an average of £25,000 five years after graduation.

The all popular accounting, business and finance ranked towards the top at £37,000, still under law, math and statistics, chemistry and natural sciences. Graduates of media, marketing and communication scored below philosophy and English literature, at £27,000. 

The study breaks down the data even further and examines how field of study prematurely directs students toward certain industries. The industries graduates enter also have an impact on their salaries and the new service provides data on the industries most likely to hire graduates by major. The low ranking of media, marketing and communication can be explained through this data, with the third likely industry to hire being charity and non-profit. With little excess money, salaries tend to be much smaller. Business and finance majors are most likely to end up in financial services, industry or telecommunication.

The transparency that the data provides may allow early students to chase their dreams with a realistic perception of the returns.  A bit of research will save graduates the later shock of their bank accounts and shallow pay checks.

For more information and the full list of salaries visit 

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