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The 5 highest paying college majors

There are a lot of factors that go into picking the right major in college. Students want to choose a career they are passionate about, but still desire to make enough money to pay off those student loans.

To help students on the path to financially fulfilling careers, Glassdoor has released its report of the 50 highest paying college majors. After analyzing hundreds of thousands of resumes and salary reports, the recruiting site revealed that graduating students will have a higher earning potential if they pursue a degree in computer science. This major leads to entry-level jobs as a software engineer, systems engineer or web developer, and boasts an impressive median base salary of $70,000.

The importance of a credible education in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) can be seen throughout the top of the list, which is dominated by careers in engineering.

“STEM majors are in demand by the technology and health industries, which offer higher paying jobs that are better protected from competition or automation,” said Dr. Andrew Chamberlin, Glassdoor’s chief economist.

Electrical engineering took the second spot with a median base salary of $68,438. Mechanical engineering is the third highest paying salary at $68,000, followed by chemical engineering at $65,000. A major in industrial engineering rounded out the top five with a median base salary of $64,381.

While STEM jobs will certainly have the highest earning potential, other popular career paths offer competitive starting salaries. With a median base salary of $58,928, a degree in nursing snagged the 9th spot, and can lead to entry level jobs as a registered nurse or case manager. A general business major came in at the 20th spot, with an average base salary of $47,850.

On the other end of the spectrum, Glassdoor also revealed the majors where students can expect a lower paycheck. A major in biology took the last spot with a median base salary of $41,250. A degree in biology typically leads to a career as a lab assistant or paramedic. Also coming in at the bottom of the list is a major in social work with an average base salary of $42,656, and major in health care administration, which might earn medical assistants and file clerks a salary of $42,000.

See the full list of the 50 highest paying college majors here.

Brittany is a writer at Yahoo Finance.

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