The Demise of the Bachelor’s Degree [INFOGRAPHIC]

For the 2013-2014 academic year, average in-state tuition at public four-year colleges was $8,900. When you add in room and board, books and other campus costs, the full sticker price of attending your public university totaled a whopping $22,800. Private schools were even pricier. That same year, average in-state tuition at private universities and colleges topped $30,100; the full sticker price was $44,750. What is all this for? Those holding bachelor’s degrees include 16% of the country’s bartenders, 14% of the country’s parking lot attendants, 23% of the country’s flight attendants and 12% of the country’s taxi drivers.

So, now that you got your bachelor’s, will you get a job offer in your field? That really depends on your major. Computer science graduates (69%), economics graduates (62%) and accounting majors (61%) have the highest percentage of grads who received job offers. History grads (40%), English grads (33%) and visual and performing arts grads (29 %) haven’t fared as well.

Most job descriptions go something like this: Bachelor’s required, master’s preferred. Now, obtaining a master’s will often cost $20,000-$30,000. Between 2002 and 2012, the annual production of master’s degrees jumped 63 percent. In the same time span, freshmen began aiming higher—42% aimed for at least a master’s degree. Only about 20% of incoming freshmen intend to settle for a bachelor’s degree.

With a master’s, you can expect to earn a starting salary in the ballpark of $1,300 per week. A bachelor’s degree, on the other hand, will earn you closer to $1,000. Is an associate’s degree actually worth more than a bachelor’s? Nearly 30% of Americans with associate’s degrees now make more than those with bachelor’s degrees. Today, there are currently 29 million jobs—jobs paying middle class wages—which only require an associate’s degree.

Are you surprised by these findings? Please share in the comments, and be sure to check out the infographic below to learn more!

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