May 24, 2022

Reference: New Report/Data: Higher Education: “The State of the Humanities 2018: Graduates In The Workforce & Beyond”

The following report (32 pages; PDF)  was published today by the Humanities Indicators project from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

From the News Release:

2018-02-07_09-46-25The new report is based primarily on original research commissioned for this study and updates to the site.

Key Findings

  • Almost 87% of workers with a bachelor’s degree in the humanities reported they were satisfied with their jobs in 2015, comparable to graduates from almost every other field.
  • Over three-quarters of humanities graduates saw themselves at or approaching “the best possible life,” which was similar to the shares among engineering and natural science graduates. Despite having the lowest median earnings, education majors had the highest level on this measure.
  • The academic fields were quite similar with respect to their graduates’ level of satisfaction with their personal financial situations in 2014. Among graduates from engineering, barely 50% reported “I have enough money,” while among humanities and education graduates, the share was 42%.
  • More than a million graduates with bachelor’s degrees in the humanities were employed as managers in 2015, and almost 60% of humanities graduates report managing or supervising employees as part of their job (which was equal to the share of all graduates).
  • Only 30% of graduates with a bachelors in humanities perceived a close relationship between their job and their degree in 2014, while more than a third saw no relationship. This differed substantially from graduates with science and professional degrees.

Alongside the report, the Indicators also released the following updates on the site, which supplement and expand the findings in the report:

Occupations and Employment



Among other findings, the new material shows that for humanities majors with a terminal bachelor’s degree, communication majors had the highest median earnings in 2015 ($55,000), but also the widest gap in median earnings between male and female graduates (22%).

Among humanities majors who had gone on to earn advanced degrees, history majors had the highest median earnings ($80,000)—more than 50% above the median for graduates from the discipline without an advanced degree.

Direct to Full Text Report (32 pages; PDF)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.