Double your major, double your return?
We use the 2003 National Survey of College Graduates to provide the first estimates of the effect on earnings of having a double major. Overall, double majoring increases earnings by 2.3% relative to having a single major among college graduates without graduate degrees. Most of the gains from having a double major come from choosing fields across two different major categories. Graduates who combine an arts, humanities or social science major with a major in business, engineering, science or math have returns 7-50% higher than graduates with a single major in arts, humanities or social science. But such double major combinations have returns no higher than single majors in business, engineering, science or math. Majors combining business and science or math have returns more than 50% greater than the returns to having a single major in these fields.
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References listed on IDEAS
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- Brown, Charles & Corcoran, Mary, 1997.
"Sex-Based Differences in School Content and the Male-Female Wage Gap,"
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- Linda Datcher Loury, 1997. "The Gender Earnings Gap among College-Educated Workers," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 50(4), pages 580-593, July.
- Graham, John W. & Smith, Steven A., 2005. "Gender differences in employment and earnings in science and engineering in the US," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 341-354, June.
- R. Kim Craft & Joe G. Baker, 2003. "Do Economists Make Better Lawyers? Undergraduate Degree Field and Lawyer Earnings," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(3), pages 263-281, January.
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- Lois Joy, 2003. "Salaries of Recent Male and Female College Graduates: Educational and Labor Market Effects," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 56(4), pages 606-621, July.
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