Best Doctoral Degrees by Salary

A doctoral degree (PhD) is the highest degree you can earn in a particular field, but the education won’t come easy. On average, doctoral candidates dedicate seven to ten years of their life earning a doctorate after completing undergraduate work. However, the earning potential varies greatly depending on the discipline.

Some of the most lucrative PhDs offer six-figure early career salaries, while mid-career salaries (based on 10+ years of work experience in the field) exceed $130,000 per year.

To find out which doctoral degrees have the best earning potential, we looked at PayScale’s College Salary Report for 2016-2017, which included a list of the highest paying doctoral majors based on alumni salary. We listed the top 10 best doctoral degrees in increasing order based on mid-career salaries. The degree in our #1 spot offers the highest salary potential based on ten or more years of experience working in the field.

Below are the 10 best doctoral degrees by salary.

  • PhD in Statistics
  • PhD in Biomedical Engineering
  • PhD in Physics
  • PhD in Engineering
  • PhD in Physical Chemistry
  • PhD in Pharmacology
  • PhD Electrical Engineering
  • PhD in Computer Science
  • PhD in Organic Chemistry
  • PhD in Chemical Engineering