Graduate survey shows some degrees losing value

Graphic: employment outcomes for 10 disciplines

An annual survey by the Council of Ontario Universities asks new graduates what they took in school, whether they were employed full-time two years after graduation and how much money they made. The numbers are useful for tracking the demand for degrees. The trends aren’t looking good.

Chart 1 shows the percentage of grads reporting full-time work two years after university for 10 of the most common degrees. For nine out of 10, fewer class of 2010 grads were employed than class of 2008 grads with the same degrees. (The exception, oddly enough, was journalism.) This suggests things actually got worse for grads since the economy recovered from the 2008-09 recession.

Chart 2 shows average salaries of graduates two years after graduation. The overall average has remained around $49,000 since the recession but there were winners and losers. The computer science class of 2010 averaged $5,050 more than the class of 2007. The engineering class of 2010 made $2,032 more. Journalism, meanwhile, was down by $2,099 on average and humanities dropped by $1,509.

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