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Master’s Degrees that Attract the Best Jobs and Wages

Higher Education Articles November 14, 2015

Below you will get an overview of job titles and type of degrees that will influence your salaries when you’ve earned your master’s degree.

Best Jobs and Wages for those with a Master’s Degree

Research conducted on the subject by PayScale.com in 2013 has enabled Forbes.com to analyze mid-career median wage levels for 35 common master’s degrees and the most common employment opportunities for holders of one of these degrees. The mid-career professionals considered by Forbes.com for the compilation were 43 years old on average and boasted 15 years of work experience.

The following table list the top master’s degrees ordered by the quantum of wages attracted by holders of these degrees:

Major Early Career Pay Mid-Career Pay
Computer Engineering (CE) $85,000 $121,000
Computer Science (CS) $81,200 $121,000
Computer Science (CS) & Mathematics $80,000 $121,000
Materials Science & Engineering $70,300 $122,000
Operations Research $80,300 $122,000
Chemical Engineering $72,900 $124,000
Electronics & Communications Engineering $84,300 $125,000
Technology Management $63,600 $125,000
Biomedical Engineering (BME) $68,400 $126,000
Electrical Engineering (EE) $78,900 $126,000
Taxation $60,700 $126,000
Computer Science (CS) & Engineering $89,000 $127,000
Electrical & Computer Engineering (ECE) $80,600 $128,000
Nurse Anesthesia $139,000 $159,000
Petroleum Engineering $96,500 $173,000

Employment Opportunities and Wage Outlook for Top Three Degrees

Master of Science in Electrical Engineering (M.S.E.E.), Master of Science in Finance (M.S.F.), and Master of Science (M.S.) in Physics are the top three degrees that offer the best jobs and highest wages to the degree holders. The following job opportunities and corresponding wages are available to holders of one of the top three degrees (data is from the 10th through 90th percentiles) (PayScale.com in August 2014).

A holder of a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering (M.S.E.E.) can choose to become an electrical engineer and earn wages in the $59,979 – $109,960 range. Alternatively, they may become a software engineer earning in the $59,933 – $112,413 range or a hardware engineer with wages in the range of $68,229 – $111,023.

A holder of a Master of Science in Finance (M.S.F.) can choose to become a financial analyst and earn wages in the $46,727 – $75,893 range. Alternatively, they may become an investment analyst earning in the $51,380 – $78,372 range or a finance manager with wages in the range of $67,187 – $131,778.

A holder of a Master of Science (M.S.) in Physics can choose to become a physicist and earn wages in the $49,329 – $132,704 range. Alternatively, they may become a high school teacher earning in the $30,021 – $119,195 range or a research scientist with wages in the range of $57,708 – $98,278.

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  • Transferable Credits
3 Program(s) Found
  • Theology Degrees Rooted in the Word of God
  • Since 1949, GCU has been a premier private Christian university in Arizona, helping students find their purpose and achieve their potential.
  • Across the College of Theology, our theology degrees are designed to help you apply Scripture to the context in which you serve.
  • GCU offers a variety of transformative degrees with real-world relevance, such as Christian studies, pastoral ministry and the online Master of Divinity. 
  • Courses are available online, evenings and on campus in Phoenix, Arizona. Talk to us to learn about financial aid, start dates and more!
Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
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  • Accelerated Programs
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  • Bachelor's degree is required to apply
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  • Online Courses
  • Accelerated Programs
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  • Designated a 2015 Military Friendly School by Victory Media for the 4th consecutive year.
  • Listed on the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll in 2013, for the sixth consecutive year
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  • Accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WUSCUC).
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