7 College Degrees with the Best Job Placement Rates

College Degrees With the Best Job Placement RateWhat’s the end game for your college education? Most likely, it’s a J.O.B.

Before you decide on a field of study, check out this article from The Wall Street Journal, which lists job placement rates by degree program.

Culling data from the U.S. Census Bureau, The Wall Street Journal provides searchable data from the 2010 census for hundreds of majors, from agricultural economics to zoology.

The top six, with a zero percent unemployment percentage, are:

  • Actuarial Science
  • Pharmacology
  • Educational administration and supervision
  • School student counseling
  • Geological and geophysical engineering
  • Astronomy and astrophysics

Coming in at No. 7, according to the Wall Street Journal report, is “teacher education: multiple levels,” with an unemployment percentage of 1.1.

The November 2013 post, “From Major to Career,” also includes the seven fields in which college graduates have the toughest time finding work. (Unemployment percentage is in parentheses.)

  • Clinical psychology (19.5)
  • Miscellaneous fine arts (16.2)
  • Library science (15)
  • Educational psychology (10.9)
  • Military technologies (10.9)
  • Architecture (10.6)

For the nation as a whole, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in October 2013 was 7.3 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In general, according to the WSJ data set, jobs in science and engineering typically have low unemployment rates. The fields in which job placement is low are generally related to the arts and social sciences.

“Some popular majors, such as nursing and finance, do particularly well, with unemployment under 5% and high salaries during the course of their careers,” reads part of an introduction on the post.

The information underscores what you probably already know: “What matters most to employers is your major,” Katie Bardaro, lead economist at compensation research firm PayScale, told Forbes.

The Forbes article lists 15 degree programs most valuable in terms of future earnings and career prospects.

For more information on job trends, such as a 10-year snapshot of employment rates in different industries, the Bureau of Labor Statistics features an interactive page that allows users to find charts and statistics and analyze trends.