The U. S. College Graduate

By F. Lawrence Babcock | Go to book overview

Chapter 7
The Kinds of Degrees Received

Previously noted is the fact that the graduates of certain technical and scientific institutions have a noticeable advantage, as to earning power, over those of general colleges. But the advantage is so slight that it does not make a convincing case for placing a vocational emphasis upon higher education. Indeed it may only reflect the fact that scientific schools are, on the whole, likely to be better endowed than the average general college, and are therefore likely to confer upon their graduates the very marked advantages already observed to result from heavy endowments.

Another aspect of the relationship that specialized education may bear to earning power appears from the following table, in which earnings are classified according to the kind of degree received by the graduates:


TABLE EE
Median Earned Incomes of Men and Women Working Graduates According to Kind of Degree Received, by Three Age Groups
TotalUnder
30 Years
30-39
Years
40 Years
& Over
Men: Bachelors of Art$2,462$1,628$2,456$3,815
Bachelors of Science$2,478$1,712$2,595$3,919
*Miscellaneous Degrees$3,095$1,730$2,800$4,260
Women: Bachelors of Art$1,561$1,354$1,590$1,966
Bachelors of Science$1,592$1,398$1,611$2,146
*Miscellaneous Degrees$1,695$1,457$1,727$2,127
* The Miscellaneous Degrees classification includes such degrees as Bachelor of Music, of
Law, of Education, etc., also, degrees which do not include "Bachelor" in their titles.

Apparently male Bachelors of Science have median incomes $16 a year higher than the Bachelors of Arts, and men with miscellaneous degrees earn $617 more than do Bachelors of Science. These kinds of degrees rank in the same earning order for all age groups, and they hold substantially true for women as well. The corresponding annual earning differentials for women are $31 and $103. There is no sure explanation for this phenomenon. Possibly it means only what has been already inferred: that the colleges and universities equipped to

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