When you enroll in college, you’ll have to decide upon your major at some point, and what is the best degree to get. While it is all too common for students to change their major during their college career, the job prospects and career growth potential in the global economy deems what majors are considered to be the best degrees to get.
While it is of utmost importance that you choose a degree that you’re genuinely interested in and see yourself in a related career, it is also useful to know what are the top degrees in demand so that when you graduate, your chances of landing a job naturally increase.
Why Does a Degree Matter?
A degree signals to employers that you can stay committed and work through years of subject matter to become well-versed in a topic. It also shows employers that you have many skills that are transferable in the workplace, such as time management, problem-solving, critical thinking, communication, and more.
For some professions, a degree is absolutely necessary, whereas others may be more lenient in accepting applicants without a degree. However, having a degree can help to secure a higher-paying job and also open the door to more career opportunities.
Most In-Demand Degrees
Here’s a look at some of the most in-demand degrees and best college degrees for 2021, their required education, and expected salaries. All statistics below are sourced from Best College Reviews.
For a lucrative career helping people, pharmacology is at the top of the list for in-demand degrees. At the bare minimum, a bachelor’s degree is required to work in the field, but with more schooling comes more opportunity for a higher salary. By 2021, the projected growth within the field is 25% and the unemployment rate is a mere 3%. Regarding salaries, the median is $105,000 but varies depending on location and education level.
2. Computer Science
Computer Science affects virtually every industry, and as such, it is a growing and prosperous field of study. Among the most-in-demand of Computer, Science degrees are those specializing in management information systems because the big data boom is constantly expanding. It is required to at least complete a bachelor’s degree to work in most companies within the field, but because it is so broad and there are many start-ups, some companies will accept an associate’s degree with work experience. By 2022, the growth is expected to be 18% with a median earning of $60,000, which increases with experience, education and is also dependent on the size of the employer.
3. Health Science
Health Science and Healthcare Administration is a promising career choice as medical technology and average life expectancy continues to increase. This means people are living longer and requiring more care, which pushes the demand for workers up. Individuals who major in Health Science have the opportunity to work in various settings, from hospitals, doctor’s offices, rehab clinics, in-home and the like. Mixing business and health, the degree is best for analytical thinkers and good communicators. By 2026, the field is expected to grow by 20% and salary increases heavily with more education. For example, those with a master’s degree can expect to earn at least $90,000 per year.
4. Information Technology
Similar to Computer Science, Information Technology is a booming industry because the field is expanding rapidly. IT focuses on the intersection of computer systems, both hardware and software, and the use of these tools to share data and securely set up tools to be able to use and store information. Since it is such a highly skilled degree, the pay tends to be commensurate, with those in the field earning a median salary of $80,000-$100,000+ a year. The IT field is also adding jobs more rapidly than other fields, with an expected 12% growth through 2026.
When choosing to study Engineering, there are multiple realms like Structural, Electric, Computer, and Mechanical to name a few. For many of these specialities, the average starting pay is in the six figures, so not only is it a good field in terms of a lucrative salary, but it also offers high job security. While most new jobs are being added in electrical, mechanical and industrial sectors, the BLS projects that the field of Engineering will experience roughly 130,000 new jobs added through 2026.
6. Business Administration
Following a trend, and especially for those who seek to study online, Business Administration is a highly sought after degree. Because the degree is well-rounded to prepare students for multiple positions, those who graduate with a Business Administration degree can enter the field of business as managers, analysts, owners, CEOs and more. Depending on what type of career you want, you can land a job with an associate’s degree in entry level and sales roles and excel higher up as you pursue a bachelor’s and/or master’s degree. The highly functional degree bodes well to learn online at schools like University of the People because of the institution’s flexible nature and the fact that you can even work while learning.
Like Computer Science degrees, every business has either one accountant or a team for Finance. Finance degrees can earn you a salary between $70,000-$120,000 and offer education for how to manage money from taxes to balance sheets. Through 2026, it is expected for the field to grow by a whopping 26% for financial managers and by 11% for financial analysts.
8. Human Resources
Employees in Human Resources help to deal with people in organizations. They manage hiring, onboarding, developmental resources and help maintain equality within organizations. Those who want to work in the field for any business typically need at least a bachelor’s degree to get started. Coursework is interdisciplinary with classes in psychology, business and conflict resolution. The field is expected to grow by 9% through 2026.
Across the world, there is a high demand and current shortage of teachers. Whether you choose to study Education online or at a traditional campus, you can play a role in changing the educational landscape and preparing the next generation to succeed. Some states and countries require certification and licensure to teach within a classroom, but a bachelor’s degree is often a good starting point to become a teacher at any level. If you’d like to pursue a career in administration or as a professor, you’ll have to continue through to earn your Master of Education. While money likely won’t be the driving factor behind choosing to enter Education, you will know that you are making a difference, and that is a priceless reward.
From therapy to counseling to working in schools and hospitals, those who get a degree in Psychology open the door to many possibilities. Starting with a bachelor’s degree, psychologists can work in the field, but for those who want to perform research, a master’s degree is well-touted. Over the next decade, the field is expected to grow by 19% as there is a wave of focus on personal well-being and mental health.
Where to Earn Your Degree?
When it comes to where you can earn the best bachelor degrees, there are many options. You can choose to study online at an institution like University of the People, attend a traditional on-campus university, a community college, or even study abroad.
These degree options are available in any type of educational setting that works best for you. It’s a subjective choice, which means that one over the other isn’t better or worse. Instead, you can evaluate the various pros and cons of studying online and decide what’s best for you.
For example, if you choose to earn your degree in Computer Science, Education, Health Science, or Business Administration at University of the People, you can study whenever and wherever you please for much less than a traditional university costs because the school is tuition-free.
Once you graduate with your chosen degree from any institution, you will be prepared to enter the workforce! Here’s a look at some of the fastest growing jobs.
When choosing what you want to earn your degree in, you should consider careers and topics that genuinely interest you. The best measure of success is genuine passion and curiosity, but of course, it’s strategic to also consider the fields that are experiencing highest growth and will offer the most opportunities upon graduation so that you can land a job.