32 college majors where graduates don't end up doing what they expect

College Majors That Don't Pay Off
College Majors That Don't Pay Off



It's not all that surprising that it's damn near impossible to find a job that will put your Art History or Theater major to good use.

But a good number of people with all kinds of educational backgrounds say they're struggling with underemployment.

Over the course of two years, PayScale collected data from nearly one million US workers and found that, overall, 46% of survey respondents consider themselves underemployed.

Of these respondents, 76% say they are not using their education or training, while 24% say they are working only part-time but would rather work full-time.

By breaking down the data further, PayScale found some interesting trends. According to PayScale's recent Underemployment report, while those at lower educational levels are more likely to be underemployed than those at higher educational levels, workers with some college coursework but no degree have the highest percentage of underemployment at 57%, followed by GED holders and high school graduates at 52%.

Unsurprisingly, Doctors of Medicine degree holders have the lowest percentage of underemployment at 30%, followed by doctorate holders at 34%.

You can check out the full data at PayScale. And for those with a college degree, scroll on for the percentage of underemployed workers, along with the reason for their underemployment, broken down by degree level and major. Each has a higher average of underemployment than the overall average of 46%.

Bachelor's degree in physical education teaching

Percent underemployed: 56.4%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 79.1%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 20.9%

Bachelor's degree in human services

Percent underemployed: 55.6%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 82.2%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 17.8%

Bachelor's degree in illustration

Percent underemployed: 54.7%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 74.5%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 25.5%

Master's degree in criminal justice

Percent underemployed: 54.3%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 89.2%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 10.8%

Bachelor's degree in criminal justice

Percent underemployed: 53.0%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 87.4%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 12.8%

Bachelor's degree in project management

Percent underemployed: 52.8%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 91.5%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 8.5%

Bachelor's degree in radio/television and film production

Percent underemployed: 52.6%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 68.4%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 31.6%

Bachelor's degree in studio art

Percent underemployed: 52.0%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 69.0%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 32.2%

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Bachelor's degree in healthcare administration

Percent underemployed: 51.8%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 83.3%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 16.7%

Bachelor's degree in education

Percent underemployed: 51.8%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 77.7%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 22.3%

Master's degree in master of human services

Percent underemployed: 51.6%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 80.0%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 20.0%

Bachelor's degree in human development and family studies

Percent underemployed: 51.5%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 75.0%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 25.0%

Bachelor's degree in creative writing

Percent underemployed: 51.1%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 76.2%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 23.8%

Bachelor's degree in animal science

Percent underemployed: 51.1%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 83.7%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 16.3%

Bachelor's degree in exercise science

Percent underemployed: 51.0%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 65.6%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 34.4%

Bachelor's degree in health sciences

Percent underemployed: 50.9%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 77.1%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 22.9%

Bachelor's degree in paralegal studies

Percent underemployed: 50.9%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 86.7%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 13.3%

Bachelor's degree in theater

Percent underemployed: 50.8%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 72.9%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 27.1%

RELATED: Best part-time jobs for college students

Bachelor's degree in art history

Percent underemployed: 50.7%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 77.4%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 22.6%

MBA degree in global business management

Percent underemployed: 50.3%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 90.0%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 10.0%

MBA degree in human resources management

Percent underemployed: 49.2%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 87.6%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 12.4%

MBA degree in leadership

Percent underemployed: 49.0%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 90.1%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 9.9%

Master's degree in public administration

Percent underemployed: 49.1%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 87.1%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 12.9%

MBA degree in leadership

Percent underemployed: 49.0%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 90.1%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 9.9%

Master's degree in business management

Percent underemployed: 48.6%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 92.3%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 7.7%

Master's degree in mental health counseling

Percent underemployed: 48.0%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 66.9%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 33.1%

Master's degree in organizational leadership

Percent underemployed: 47.2%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 93.6%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 6.4%

Master's degree in theology

Percent underemployed: 47.2%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 59.3%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 40.7%

Master's degree in history

Percent underemployed: 47.1%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 79.2%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 20.8%

Master's degree in education

Percent underemployed: 47.0%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 76.0%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 24.0%

Master's degree in human resources management

Percent underemployed: 46.9%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 85.3%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 14.7%

Master's degree in project management

Percent underemployed: 46.8%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 90.2%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 9.8%

Master's degree in counseling

Percent underemployed: 46.4%

Underemployed because they're not using their education or training: 70.6%

Underemployed because they'd rather work full-time: 29.4%

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