In recent years, students have grown more focused on higher education as a means to landing a good job and earning a higher salary.
Several publications have responded to this shift in public opinion with a flurry of rankings attempting to quantify the return on education (understood a variety of different ways) for certain schools, majors, and degrees.
The latest entry comes from Business Insider, who recently ranked the college majors with the lowest unemployment rates.
Business Insider's analysis is based on a separate analysis by Zippia, a career site. Zippia used data from the U.S. Census Bureau to estimate the number of people who graduated within specific majors and the share of them that were employed and unemployed. Then, Business Insider used Zippia's results to identify the majors with the lowest share of unemployed graduates.
According to Business Insider, the majors with the lowest unemployment rates are:
1. Social science or history teacher education
2. Natural resources management
3. Special needs education
4. Communication disorders sciences and services
5. Elementary education
7. Animal sciences
8. Language and drama education
9. Biochemical sciences
10. Civil engineering
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Writing for Business Insider, Chris Weller notes that several majors on the list correspond to niche, high-demand areas within education and science.
Zippia and Business Insider did not analyze how many of the employed graduates were working in their fields of study or how many were underemployed. Despite the economic recovery, about 44% of college graduates are still underemployed, according to data from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (Morris, Zippia ranking, April 2017; Weller, Business Insider, 11/8).
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