However, there are a handful of specialties where Master’s compensation is equivalent to – or higher than – MBA compensation. They include: Project Management ($107,800 vs. $92,100) and Supply Chain Management ($108,000 vs. $108,200).
The findings for starting and mid-career salaries from business doctorate degrees were mixed. The highest starting and mid-career salaries from the doctoral space came from Economics at $95,900 and $127,900, with MBAs earning $3,900 more by mid-career than doctorate holders. The only other business-related doctoral program was Business Administration, where degree holders earned $78,600 and $108,000 respectively.
MBAs FIND LITTLE MEANING IN THEIR WORK
Despite earning higher wages – MBAs held 13 of the top 30 mid-career salaries – they weren’t particularly enthused about their work. The highest satisfaction came from MBAs in Health Care Management, where 82% answered “Yes” to whether their work makes the world a better place. That tied for 50th place among all degrees. The next highest? That would be Health Care Administration at 80%. After that, you won’t find an MBA concentration until Human Resources Management (65%) , Business Management and Human Resources Management at (61%), Operations Management (59%), and Project Management (59%).
However, you’ll find several MBA specialties near the bottom of the list, including Marketing and International Business (35%), Information Systems (39%), Economics (43%), Accounting (45%), Supply Chain Management (45%), Information Technology (45%), Marketing and Communications (46%), and Business and Marketing (46%). Strategy – the highest-salaried field – came in at 49%.
Alas, it isn’t just MBAs who are unhappy, as the bottom is also littered with graduates holding business-related master’s degrees, including Taxation (29%), International Business (33%), Accounting (36%), Accounting and Taxation (38%), Business and Marketing (39%), Finance (40%), and Economics (41%). Those numbers were actually lower than those of lawyers (42%), often cited as the unhappiest profession.
That said, these numbers correlate with a recent Gallup survey, which found that professionals with business-related undergraduate degrees are often the most disengaged employees in the workplace
The people who found the most meaning from work held master’s degrees in areas like Communicative Disorders (95%), Pastoral Ministry (95%), Community Health Education (94%), Physical Therapy (93%), and Divinity (92%).
To review the top MBA, and master’s degree salaries by concentration, continue to the next pages.
Top 10 Compensation
|Rank||Major||Degree Type||Early Career Salary||Mid-Career Salary||Percentage of High Job Meaning|
|1||Petroleum Engineering||Master’s Degree||$102,800||$187,600||69%|
|2||Nurse Anesthesia||Master’s Degree||$140,900||$162,800||87%|
|3||Computer Engineering||Doctorate Degree||$108,100||$150,000||NA|
|4||Electrical and Computer Engineering||Doctorate Degree||$103,200||$145,100||64%|
|6||Electrical Engineering||Doctorate Degree||$99,100||$141,400||66%|
|7||General and Strategic Management||MBA Degree||$81,800||$140,700||58%|
|8||Computer Science||Doctorate Degree||$110,800||$140,600||66%|
|9||Chemical Engineering||Doctorate Degree||$91,900||$139,300||63%|
|10||Juris Doctorate||JD Degree||$66,100||$139,000||42%|