10 Hardest College Majors: Are You Up To The Challenge?

hardest college majors

Getting a degree in college is a good thing. It’s one of the biggest investments you can make as it provides great return value. However, one must know that what you do after college depends on what course you take. If you want to reap greater returns in the future, you must be careful in choosing what college degree you should pursue. There are some courses considered to be the hardest college majors. The question is – are you up to the challenge?

hardest college majors

With the updated data provided by the Center on Education and the Workforce (CEW) at Georgetown University, we were able to come up with a list college majors considered hardest to take up in terms of demand, salary, and career opportunities.

List of 10 hardest college majors, with lowest starting payment and highest unemployment rates:

1. Film, Video, and Photography Arts

Although you want to be the next Stephen Spielberg or Michael Bay, you might want to reconsider about pursuing this type of career. The entertainment industry is very competitive. While television and movies are becoming a big hit in this digital age, becoming successful in the field is not that easy.

  • Unemployment rate: 11.4%
  • Starting Salary: $30,000

2. Anthropology and Archeology

This profession, which studies the human beings, isn’t really in demand in the society today. Although anthropologists and archeologists are essential for different excavation projects, the job opportunities for this type of career is very low – not to mention that most of the roles done by them require advanced education.

  • Unemployment rate: 12.6%
  • Starting Salary: $27,000

3. Sociology

Although sociology is one of the popular undergraduate degrees, the job opportunities for this profession are not high. In fact, it is one of the worst majors for college students. It was found out that recent sociology graduates make about 14% less, compared to recent graduates with other majors. If you’re interested in sociology, you might want to consider taking other social science major, like economics.

  • Unemployment rate: 9.9%
  • Starting Salary: $30,000

4.  Fine Arts

Think twice before you spend a lot of your precious time and fortune trying to be the next da Vinci. According to Hard Times, the report released by Georgetown University, the job employment for this career isn’t pretty. In addition, recent graduates, who were able to get jobs, are not paid very well.

  • Unemployment rate: 10.1%
  • Starting Salary: $29,000

5. Commercial Art and Graphic Design

In this digital world, every company needs a graphic designer to design their marketing campaign and improve their website’s appearance. But despite this demand, the job employment for art and graphic designers is still lower than other bachelor’s degree.

  • Unemployment rate: 10.5%
  • Starting Salary: $33,000

6. Philosophy and Religious Studies

There aren’t many job opportunities for philosophy graduates. Most of them only end up in teaching positions, which require higher degrees or a teaching certificate.

  • Unemployment rate: 9.5%
  • Starting Salary: $29,000

7. English and Language Literature

With the advancement of technology, the job employment for English literature has tremendously declined. Not to mention that the job salary for this career remains low compared to other majors.

  • Unemployment rate: 9.8%
  • Starting Salary: $31,000

8. Psychology

Sure, studying human behavior and mental processes is an exciting thing to do, but it doesn’t mean that the payment for this profession is exciting as well. In fact, it’s one of the majors with lowest payment rate, according to Hard Times (Georgetown’s report).

  • Unemployment rate: 9.2%
  • Starting Salary: $30,000

9. Mass Media

The many changes in mass media and communication reduced the career opportunities for mass communication students and graduates. If you want to be successful in this career, you should possess the right skills and understand the modern approach of effective mass media and communication.

  • Unemployment rate: 8.9%
  • Starting Salary: $31,000

10. History

With the number of people holding a degree in history and limited number of companies offering jobs for them, it’s very unlikely that everyone will be given an opportunity to practice their profession. In fact, CEW listed history major as one of the degrees with the highest unemployment and lowest salary rates.

  • Unemployment rate: 9.5%
  • Starting Salary: $32,000

If your passion relates to any of the hardest college majors listed above, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you should not pursue it. The list provided is just a guide to help you choose the best college degree for you. No college major is wrong to take; however, if you want to immediately get a job after college and increase your chance to earn better, then you should be realistic and careful in choosing a major.

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