Humanities Indicators
Facebook Twitter YouTube
Workforce  >  Earnings & Occupations of Humanities Majors
 
Humanities Majors and the Professions

Although the proportion of attorneys with a humanities background has declined, the legal profession continues to draw a substantial share of its ranks from the humanities, particularly when compared to medicine.

Findings and Trends

  • From 1996 to 2008, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Survey of Income and Program Participation, approximately 6–8% of all noninstitutionalized U.S. civilians with medical degrees had undergraduate degrees in the humanities, as compared to over 20% of those with law degrees over the same span (Indicator III-5g).
  • In 2008, 22% of those holding advanced degrees in law (LL.B., J.D., and Ph.D.) had majored in humanities (down from the 2001 high of 28%). This proportion was larger than that for any other field and would have been even greater if students with bachelor’s degrees in history—which the Census Bureau treats as a social science—had been included (Indicator III-5h).
III-5g: Percentage of Advanced Degree Holders with Bachelor’s Degrees in the Humanities,* 1996–2008

* Among the noninstitutionalized U.S. civilian population.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 1996–2008 Survey of Income and Program Participation (Education and Training History Module). Data were analyzed using the bureau’s online data analysis tool, DataFerrett (beta version).

Related Indicators
../cmsData/xls/III-5g.xls../cmsData/ppt/III-5g.ppt../cmsData/pdf/III-5g.pdf
III-5h: Undergraduate Majors of Advanced Law Degree Holders,* 2008

* Among the noninstitutionalized U.S. civilian population.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2008 Survey of Income and Program Participation (Education and Training History Module). Data were analyzed using the bureau’s online data analysis tool, DataFerrett (beta version).

Related Indicators
../cmsData/xls/III-5h.xls../cmsData/ppt/III-5h.ppt../cmsData/pdf/III-5h.pdf