Professor, Postsecondary / Higher Education Salary
Over three-fourths of Professors in the United States have been in the field for more than 10 years. Pay can fall anywhere from $49K to $152K per year, but median earnings come to around $85K annually. While geography and experience level impact pay for this group, the specific employer is the most influential factor. Work is enjoyable for Professors, who typically claim high levels of job satisfaction. Medical benefits are awarded to nearly all, and a strong majority earn dental coverage. Men working as Professors who took the survey just slightly outnumber women at 58 percent. The data for this snapshot was collected from individuals who took PayScale's salary survey.
|Salary||$49,655 - $150,809|
|Bonus||$989 - $49,405|
|Total Pay (||$49,180 - $152,328|
|Hourly Rate||$12.77 - $100.17|
|Overtime||$10.14 - $128.22|
|Bonus||$989 - $49,405|
|Total Pay (||$49,180 - $152,328|
Job Description for Professor, Postsecondary / Higher Education
The job of a professor at the postsecondary or higher education level involves not only lecturing and teaching students in the classroom, but working with them to develop research, dissertations, or thesis-based papers as well. A professor also must be able to perform research, collect and analyze data, and examine original documents, literature, and other source material.Read More...
In the classroom, a professor must be able to effectively present or guide lectures, exercises, and sometimes laboratory experiments. He/She must also grade exams and papers, as well as work well with students.
A professor typically works indoors in a classroom, lab and/or office setting at a college or university. He/She often works alone, but may also work with a teaching assistant or aide depending upon the size and difficulty of the class. The job of a professor often is not physically demanding; however, it is very mentally challenging. He/She must be have full mastery of his/her specialized subject material, as well as be able to field any questions posited by their students. In addition, a professor must keep with the newest developments in his/her field.
The education requirements are lengthy, involving both high school and college education, typically including a graduate-level degree. Professors' work mainly includes regular business hours; however, additional research, grading, and office hours often may take place during off-hours.
Professor, Postsecondary / Higher Education Tasks
- Perform research to expand knowledge by performing experiments, collecting and analyzing data, or examining original documents, literature, and other source material.
- Keep up with developments in an academic field.
- Supervise graduate students' teaching and research.
- Publish research findings.
- Prepare lectures, exercises and laboratory experiments; grade exams and papers; advise and work with students individually.
Common Career Paths for Professor, Postsecondary / Higher Education
Professors who go on to become Chairmans may see their salaries climb quite a bit. Median pay for Chairmans is $149K annually. Given that the median pay is $80K, it may be surprising to find that a College Department Chair is the most common role for Professors to subsequently assume on their way up the ladder. Transitioning into a Dean of Graduate Studies role — which pays $107K — is also typical for Professors, though less common by comparison.
Professor, Postsecondary / Higher Education Job Listings
Popular Employer Salaries for Professor, Postsecondary / Higher Education
Professors fill the offices of leading firms University of Washington (UW), Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), University of California, San Diego (UCSD), University of Southern California (USC), and Cornell University. North Carolina State University (NCSU) offers the largest salaries in town — $161K on average. Other employers shelling out big bucks include University of Southern California (USC), Arizona State University (ASU), and Emory University, where Professors typically earn around $156K, $141K, or $140K, respectively.
Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) reports the lowest median salary in the area by far — it's only $77K, less than half of the top paying company's rate. University of Florida (UF), Florida Agricultural and Mechanical (A&M) University (famu), and San Diego State University (SDSU) are a few other employers known for handing out relatively lightweight salaries ($89K, $90K, and $95K respectively).
Popular Skills for Professor, Postsecondary / Higher Education
Survey results imply that Professors deploy a deep pool of skills on the job. Most notably, facility with Engineering Design, Research, and Statistical Analysis are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 43 percent, 30 percent, and 24 percent, respectively. Those listing Mathematica as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. Online Education and Public Speaking also typically command lower compensation. The majority of those who know Oral / Verbal Communication also know Writing Procedures & Documentation and Administration. It is often found that people who know Research Analysis are also skilled in Administration and Writing Procedures & Documentation.
Pay by Experience Level for Professor, Postsecondary / Higher Education
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Professors with a rich background of experience are typically rewarded with larger paychecks. Workers with less than five years' experience earn around $60K on average, and those who have five to 10 years under their belts see a higher median salary of $71K. Professors who work for 10 to 20 years in their occupation tend to earn about $86K. More than 20 years of experience mean a somewhat bigger median paycheck of $99K, but it's not much more than what less experienced people make.
Pay Difference by Location
For Professors, San Francisco provides a pay rate that is 54 percent greater than the national average. Professors can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Berkeley (+51 percent), Boston (+36 percent), Los Angeles (+25 percent), and Indianapolis (+23 percent). Houston is home to the smallest salaries in the field, lagging the national average by 8 percent. A couple other locations with smaller-than-average paychecks include Dallas (5 percent lower) and Baltimore (3 percent lower).
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Key Stats for Professor, Postsecondary / Higher Education
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