On average, 25- to 54-year-old male bachelor’s degree graduates who worked full year, full time, in 2010, earned $87,543 in 2010 dollars (Chart 1).
Among them, management sciences and quantitative methods graduates earned the most—$130,547, or $43,004 more than the average male bachelor’s degree graduate (after adjusting for age).
These graduates were followed closely by graduates of chemical engineering ($120,148), geological and earth sciences/geosciences ($119,397), and finance and financial management services ($116,473). Of the 13 programs with above-average earnings, were in engineering and 4 were in business. Note that 2010 was in the midst of a recovery in natural resources prices, which may have benefited graduates from certain disciplines such as engineering and geology. More recently, world oil prices have declined (Gellatly 2015), and it remains to be seen how graduates in related fields have fared in the labour market.
At the other end of the spectrum, male bachelor’s degree graduates from theological and ministerial studies earned the least ($51,791) after adjusting for age. These graduates were followed closely by graduates from music ($55,942); social work ($56,407); and linguistics, comparative and related language studies and services ($58,301).
A key finding that emerges is that earnings varied considerably by specific fields, even within broad field groupings. For example, the primary 2011 CIP groupings combine architecture and engineering programs. However, while male graduates from all engineering programs but one earned more than the average male bachelor’s degree graduate, the average earnings of male architecture graduates was almost $9,000 below the overall average (after adjusting for age). Similarly, within the category of social and behavioural science and law, economics was the only field in which men had above-average earnings ($93,256)—although male political science and government graduates were close to the average ($85,069). In contrast, male general psychology graduates earned $68,905 on average ($24,352 less than their counterparts in economics), and male sociology graduates earned $73,934 on average ($19,322 less than their economics counterparts). Similar findings hold for other broad field of study groupings—that is, the average earnings of graduates varied considerably across specific disciplines within the broader classification. This finding holds more generally by sex and education level.
Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor. Read the whole story at Earnings of Postsecondary Graduates by Detailed Field of Study