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Average Starting Salary for a Masters Degree Graduate

The average starting salary for individuals with a master's degree depends on their field of study, among other factors. Learn about some of the average starting salaries for graduates of master's degree programs.

Starting Salary with a Master's Degree

The average starting salary for master's degree graduates can vary greatly based off of several factors, including the type of degree earned. For example, a computer science program graduate typically earns more than someone who graduates from a sociology program, even though they both hold a master's degree.

Average Starting Salaries by Discipline

According to a salary survey conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) in January 2015, MBA program graduates took home the top average starting salaries among professionals with computer science master's degrees, while a healthcare master's degree earned graduates higher average starting salaries than graduates of social science programs.

In 2016, NACE projected physics majors would be the top earners of all science majors, and economics majors would be the top earners of all social science majors. Petroleum engineering students are projected to be the top engineering major earners, with management information systems graduates projected to be the top earners for business majors. Lastly, in humanities, the top earners were projected to be philosophy majors.

Let's go over some specific average starting salaries in different fields of study:

Field of Study Average Starting Salary
Computer science $71,140
Engineering $69,698
Business $67,890
Math & Sciences $64,465
Communications $59,130
Healthcare $58,500
Social Sciences $54,816
Humanities $53,692
Agriculture & Natural Resources $51,417

It is difficult to state the average starting salary for a master's degree graduate because salaries vary so much based upon the field of study, so it is much better to determine the average starting salary by field.

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