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Discussion Starter #1
Now that I’m in my final semester of my bachelor’s degree I just have to warn anyone about the decisions they’re about to make getting into a degree. Certain degrees are just not useful, meaning they lead to consequences that many don’t want to experience objectively, such as a lack of a job, or the lack of a job with a good income.

For more elaboration, here’s the list:

Commerce/Business/Marketing - if you wanted to do well in business, you should have just started one and tested certain ideas out. The certificate will get you a business assistant job, you have to work your way up or start from scratch (either is not easy). You don’t even need a diploma to do well in Marketing or any business related field.

Science, Psychological Science, Biomedical Science : easy to get into , but according to the certificate you get, you basically learn a lot of nonsense, other than a few useful topics, say in statistics, and become a research assistant . You could have done the same with a diploma in any related field here (e.g. a Science diploma)

Physics/Mathematics/Economics - not useful for any position, except mere knowledge . Unless it’s at the university, get ready to become a business or university assistant as well .

Arts (Performance, Visual Arts, Music, Film, etc) - Can help get a job at a radio station or media job in photography job or as a model, but you could have gotten those jobs even without the training and learned the same amount actually working the job, than you did at university. This is the lowest class of degree in terms of how you will be recognised by employers after university, unless you get it from a top school , then it’s a little bit impressive, but doesn’t affect your job. Most likely you will be unemployed for months after graduation because it was all fun but led to very little jobs and is not in demand at all.

English, Sociology, Political Science, Literature, Languages, Anthropology, Philosophy, etc - you will be looking for a job for a really long time . Get ready to work in a job that you would have gotten anyway, even without the degree, like retail, advertising or marketing. Just a little above an arts degree in terms of professional recognition by employers.

Engineering/Medicine/Law - you can get a cosy job, you wouldn’t be able to with any other degree or diploma, and you do a little postgrad in the same field, and you get to become a lawyer, doctor or engineer and are professionally recognised by society as part of a group of upper class individuals, who often get good well paying jobs

Nursing - you can get a job as a nurse, that’s about it. It will take a lot of time to work your way up the ladder. Not much in terms of professional recognition, there is always someone “higher up” than you. Employability is around the same as the IT degree, but is a highly stressful job, and is not very interesting.

IT - you can also get a cosy job, but I’ve seen a lot of people who work as IT assistants. Good thing is there is security in the IT industry. Much better career opportunities compared to just doing Maths, Business or any Science related degree. Roughly on the same level as Engineering/Medicine/Law , except you don’t end up with one straight career path and your company determines how you are recognised in society
 

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I agree with most of that, but have to disagree with nursing and medical.

My siblings have worked their way up to a really good position through education. They’re making bank! They succeeded through this HORRIBLY flawed education system.

The medical field and computer science are probably the only fields worthwhile wherever you are. Possibly even anything related to game development, but it has to be a LEGIT game development program. Not like Art Institute those evil bastards.

The rest of the fields depend on where you are, meaning what college/university; maybe even what state/country you’re in.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I agree with most of that, but have to disagree with nursing and medical.

My siblings have worked their way up to a really good position through education. They’re making bank! They succeeded through this HORRIBLY flawed education system.
I figured I missed one. I would say it’s the same as nursing, you can get a good job as a teacher but difficult to work up . I’m sure there are some exceptional cases


The medical field and computer science are probably the only fields worthwhile wherever you are. Possibly even anything related to game development, but it has to be a LEGIT game development program. Not like Art Institute those evil bastards.

The rest of the fields depend on where you are, meaning what college/university; maybe even what state/country you’re in.
You’re right.

Geographical location completely changes the job demand. If you’re in a big city, arts students are probably not that worse off , you have plenty of graphic design, arts-related clinics and media outlets
 

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A lot of it seems rather subjective and I'm not sure what your criteria are to begin with... nursing not being "very interesting" is a bit silly to say in a topic in which you're trying to make some objective evaluation.. idk your post reads to me kinda cynical, or disillusioned and subjective

Science, Psychological Science, Biomedical Science : easy to get into , but according to the certificate you get, you basically learn a lot of nonsense, other than a few useful topics, say in statistics, and become a research assistant . You could have done the same with a diploma in any related field here (e.g. a Science diploma)
biomedical scientists, chemists & biologists work in almost every health related place, from labs that do all health testing, to hospitals to industries like pharmacy and agriculture
 

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Discussion Starter #5
A lot of it seems rather subjective and I'm not sure what your criteria are to begin with... nursing not being "very interesting" is a bit silly to say in a topic in which you're trying to make some objective evaluation.. idk your post reads to me kinda cynical, or disillusioned and subjective

biomedical scientists, chemists & biologists work in almost every health related place, from labs that do all health testing, to hospitals to industries like pharmacy and agriculture
Seems to me like they don’t really have much opportunities, since most of those jobs are taken anyway by more experienced people with at least 2+ years of work experience in the field

I think my perspective is realistic above all

Most of them end up research assistants just as you said, whether it’s working in a lab as an assistant or as a research assistant.
 

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Seems to me like they don’t really have much opportunities, since most of those jobs are taken anyway by more experienced people with at least 2+ years of work experience in the field

I think my perspective is realistic above all

Most of them end up research assistants just as you said, whether it’s working in a lab as an assistant or as a research assistant.
I wasnt talking about research assistants. And afaik assistants are usually people with lower level diplomas at least in europe.

But so what if they are an assistant at first when they're inexperienced? Everyone start somewhere.
 

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I’m a senior in high school, and I plan to major in English education when I get my bachelors. Out of curiosity, would you consider that a useful degree?
 

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There is no use generalizing something that is better understood in specificity. Your passions, work ethic, location, personality, background, etc. are all going to play a part in this. Once you make a certain amount of money, no addition of extra money will add any value to your life. Yes, it is smart to consider whether or not your skills will be marketable, but it is not the only thing.
 

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Certain degrees are not useful but there are no hard and fast general rules on it. You have to consider:
  • Current trends where you live/where you plan to live
  • What your talents are
  • Your or your family's financial situation
  • What you want in life
I got a bachelor's degree in Economics. Supposedly "not useful" according to this list. And OP is partially right, I did end up working as a research assistant at my university for a number of years (part of it while I was still in school). On the other hand, it actually did open doors for me because I learned statistics, data analysis and some basic programming as part of the curriculum. I was able to get research assistant jobs due to my knowledge of statistics software and then I used the research assistance experience to later get a job as a market researcher. After a year I switched to a data analyst position, which I'm in now. A couple years more of being a data analyst and I could probably switch to a different but related, more lucrative career in, say, data engineering or machine learning.

I still won't just flat out recommend economics to anyone, because the usefulness of the degree depends on your specific program and what you plan to do with the degree. My school's econ department just happened to heavily empathize math and statistics, making the econ degree sort of like a STEM degree. But this is in no way the norm for econ departments across the world. I think it's very common for econ programs to focus mostly on theory.

Also, back then there were no data science or data analytics programs. I think nowadays more and more universities are offering them. So if you're looking to get into data science, data analytics, data engineering, etc. you might be better off just specializing in those fields right off the bat. The only possible advantage you'd get from an economics degree is if you want to work more closely on the business side of things, or if you actually just want to learn about economics.

What I would recommend to the average college freshman is to NOT get a humanities or arts degree unless a. your family is well-off and willing to support you for any number of years, or b. you just can't see yourself being motivated and disciplined in any other field. It's not the end of the world if you graduate with a medieval history and philosophy degree... you just better be prepared to struggle for a quite a while...

Also, if you can't figure out what exactly you want to do, go for a field that's broad and encompasses many other disciplines. A broader major will leave you with more options. Avoid very narrow majors like Child Psychology or Sports Nutrition or what have you, unless you have a well-thought-out plan, that is.
 

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If no one has mentioned this already - it's really important that you have a focus, and that may require a master's degree, especially for many liberal arts degrees. I'm getting my BA in history, which by itself sounds like a poor decision, but paired with a master's in library science/archival studies and internship experience I'm more confident I will get into the field I want, or similar.

When I was a psychology major it was also heavily emphasized that in order to succeed, one needed to know where they wanted to go with their degree. I think this matters more than the degree you choose. I was going to get my bachelor's in psychology, then get a master's with a specialty in special needs children so I can get into occupational or speech therapy. Start from the career you want and work backwards, instead of starting with a general idea.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
I’m a senior in high school, and I plan to major in English education when I get my bachelors. Out of curiosity, would you consider that a useful degree?
Sorry I need to stick by what I said, it won’t lead anywhere lol unless you are the around 1% who gets everything the teacher/professor says and gets straight HDs and Ds, and becomes a lecturer in English.

If you’ve got skills in English it would be Law. If you got skills in Maths, you should do Engineering.

If you look at the jobs, which you’ll end up doing just after university, there will either be a long list (Law) or a short list (English)
 

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I did a BA Sociology. In my final year of my degree, and for a few years afterward I'd somewhat agree with you.. However there is a bigger picture you're not seeing here.

My mind has developed in ways that would not have happened without attending my degree. Not only did it change my way of thinking, even my personality you could say, but it gave me a deeper insight through its process on how education processes people and why (and crucially why not) it may be important. It's one of those things where when you go through it you take it for granted, but you realise upon reflection it was necessary for the development of further realisations connecting the dots when you do enter work and begin to understand the nuts and bolts of how industries function.

I taught English abroad, and now I'm pursuing programming. Neither of these really need degrees I've now realised, however without attending university I can see how there would be gaps in my development of understanding how the "process" exists that are crucial. Also, you cannot underestimate the impact of going to a good university and being surrounded by people who are aiming for a certain level. After having gone to a grammar school and to uni it made it so ingrained within my identity that I would always try to aim for a certain level of job, and honestly it's within that capacity to aim and have belief in the first place which is probably THE most determining factor. Being able to sit with PhDs, fellow students, and then otherwise meeting people in other professional fields and speaking to them as equals- it keeps open a whole world that could otherwise be psychologically shut off for you.

I could be someone with the exact same capacities, but with a different background, different education, I wouldn't have the same initiative to even set the same targets in the first place and that's one of the most powerful societal forces that I see happen around me all the time.
 
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