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  • College ROI: What If STEM Isn't for You?
    Every year, one things stands out in PayScale's College ROI report: STEM degrees offer the highest return on students' tuition dollar. That means that the schools that offer degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math tend to come out on top of the ranking. It doesn't mean, however, that you should try to force your artist's heart to embrace STEM.
  • When It Comes to Job Skills, American Millennials Are in a Race to the Bottom
    The youngest workers, the ones who grew up alongside the latest and greatest technologies, have always been assumed to be more skilled in their use. It's probably been like this since the invention of the typewriter, but it's increasingly true now, in an era when most office jobs rely on digital technologies that adapt seemingly by the minute. In addition, today's young workers are more educated than ever before, boasting more years of education than any previous generation. There's just one problem: recent research shows that Gen Y workers in the U.S. are anything but highly skilled.
  • 5 Tips on Choosing a College: Confessions of an Art School Grad
    By now, we probably all know someone who struggles with student loan debt or job woes. Many of us young folk went to college hoping to make our dreams come true, only to find ourselves saddled with enormous debt and no job prospects. Young grads are still having trouble nailing down that first professional job, and many people aren't working in the industries they trained for. It wasn't exactly a walk in the park for older people either, whose careers went kaput and they had to go back to school or get new training. Stories from the Great Recession are many among us.
  • College ROI Report: Will You Earn Enough to Pay Off Your Debt?
    Student loan debt is on the rise. In 2011, 51 percent of first-time, full-time college students had took out student loans, according to the National Center of Education Statistics, an 11 percent increase from 10 years prior. The average size of those loans also increased by 36 percent. During the same period, the country experienced one of the worst recessions in its history, offering college students fewer resources to draw on, in order to offset loans, and dimmer prospects of high-earning employment after graduation. In the latest edition of the College ROI report, PayScale examines which colleges and universities offer the best return and lowest debt load for prospective students.
  • PayScale's 2015 College ROI Report: Will Your Degree Pay Off?
    Student loan debt has more than quadrupled over the past 20 years, according to Pew Research Center. In 2012, the average loan total was $29,400, and seven out of 10 students graduated with debt. No wonder that many prospective students (and their parents) consider the return on their college investment before choosing a school or program. PayScale's 2015 College ROI Report ranks the schools and majors whose graduates receive a high rate of return from attending -- in other words, they earned back their tuition and fees, and then some, and then went on to earn much higher salaries than they would have without their degree.
  • PayScale at SXSW: Economic Mobility Through Education, and What Employers Really Want From Grads
    SXSWedu began as a regional event focusing on K-12 education in Texas, but since its inception in 2011, it has evolved into an international conference on what makes education work for students and educators. SXSWedu Conference & Festival now offers 300 sessions and workshops, 700 speakers, and an Education Expo. This year, PayScale is participating in two panel discussions: Economic Mobility Through Education, and What Employers Want Most and Get Least from Grads.
  • The 10 Most (and 10 Least) Profitable Undergraduate College Degrees
    Of course, you could make your millions after earning your bachelor's degree in English or art history, but if high earning potential is your post-graduation goal, you'll want to target your educational plans accordingly. (Hint: think STEM.)
  • Here's What Workers Cared About in 2014: 10 Most Popular Posts
    Humans are fascinated by the worst-case scenario -- the blown job interview, the botched salary negotiation, the bad college choice. It's not always schadenfreude, either. By analyzing the bad things that could happen, it's easier to prepare and avoid them. This year, PayScale's most popular posts were the ones that helped readers dodge disaster.
  • What Code Should You Learn? [infographic]
    Learn to code. It's the advice of career experts everywhere, from high school guidance counselors to mid-career job coaches. But with literally hundreds of languages to choose from, you might find yourself a bit lost as to which language to focus on first -- especially if the goal isn't to become a computer programmer, but rather to boost your career in your current (non-programming) field.
  • 4 Alternatives to Going to College
    Four years ago, I was sitting in my college dorm in Conway, Arkansas, wondering why paying $39,290 a year possibly made sense. I had come to college with hopes that it would make me a better person, but I soon realized that I would learn far more by going out to experience that world, rather than paying people tell me about the world. Disillusioned with school, I left.
  • Is Capping Student Loans at $10K a Good Idea?
    Recently, billionaire investor Mark Cuban declared that fixing the student debt crisis is the most important thing our government can do to restore the national economy. His idea: cap federal student loans at $10,000 per student, per year. Few would argue that student loan debt isn’t a problem of epic proportions, but Cuban’s explanation of the crisis and his solution resulted in mixed reactions.
  • How College Rankings Work [infographic]
    Every year, media outlets run their lists of the top colleges and universities in the country, and every year, prospective students read them and scratch their heads, wondering why this list says that Princeton is the nation's top university, while that list says it's Stanford, and so on. The answer is that every list-maker has its own set of criteria for determining the best institutions. To find the best school for you, start by learning what goes into these rankings.
  • Advanced Degrees Are No Guarantee, But Most of the Highest Earners Have One
    Much has been written -- here, and elsewhere -- about the fact that graduate degrees are no guarantee of success. However, PayScale's College Salary Report shows that the highest earners tend to have advanced degrees. Furthermore, the wage earners who see the largest increase in their salaries over the course of their careers are generally those who continue their education beyond a two- or four-year degree.
  • Top 10 Law Schools by Salary Potential

    A law degree isn't the guarantee of success that it used to be, but if you choose the right law school, you stand a much better chance of earning a high salary, both after graduation and over the long term. That doesn't mean that you need to set your sights on the Ivy League, however. This year's College Salary Report includes plenty of programs from non-Ivy schools.

  • Top 10 Graduate Schools by Salary Potential
    If you're thinking of going back to school to get a graduate degree, whether it's a Master's, a PhD, a JD, or an MBA, know this: where you decide to get your advanced degree is important, both when it comes to getting a job after graduation and in terms of how much money you'll make over the course of your career. This release of the College Salary Report concentrates on top graduate schools.
  • The 5 Most Meaningful Majors
    Why not pick the major that leads to the highest salary after graduation and over time? Because not everyone wants to a petroleum engineer or an actuary. Aptitude and passion both count when it comes time to choose a major. For that reason, PayScale's College Salary Report also lists the majors that provide the highest meaning for their graduates.
  • 5 High-Paying Jobs for English Majors

    For today's prospective college students, the pressure is high to choose a STEM major, and set themselves up for a high-paying, in-demand occupation. There's just one problem: what if science and technology -- outside of the scope of speculative fiction -- genuinely don't excite you?

  • The Status of College Dropouts: Struggling With Debt and No Degree
    College is often touted as a requirement for a high-paying job, or a ticket to the middle class, especially for low-income students. However, college is also growing increasingly unaffordable for everyone but the most well-to-do families.
  • Top 5 Associate Degrees by Salary Potential
    PayScale's College Salary Report includes associate degrees for the first time this year. Why? Because from a salary perspective, the right two-year degree can pay off -- sometimes, more than a bachelor's degree.
  • Top 5 Bachelor's Degrees by Salary Potential
    STEM degrees have it, when it comes to earning potential after graduation. In fact, as shown by PayScale's recent, majors-focused release of the College Salary Report, choice of major makes more of an impact on salary than any other factor, including which school you attend.