Arts graduates earn least while teachers earn most, survey finds

Higher Education Authority reports 90% of graduates get jobs in Ireland

Young teachers earn most within months of leaving college while arts graduates take in the least, a survey of more than 29,000 recent third-level graduates has found.

When broken down by type of course, education graduates – such as teachers – had the highest reported average salaries (€38,701) nine months after graduating. There were also relatively high salaries for ICT (€36,135) and engineering graduates (€36,81). The lowest reported average salaries were in the arts and humanities field at €24,728.

Employment outcomes are also best for education graduates, with 93 per cent working or about to start a job. This is followed by health and welfare (87 per cent), ICT (82 per cent ) and engineering (82 per cent). Arts and humanities graduates (63 per cent) were the least likely to be working or about to start a job.

However, these graduates had among the highest percentages going on to do further study (24 per cent).


Further education

Overall, the Higher Education Authority report shows that nine months after graduating the vast majority of graduates (78 per cent) were working.

The remainder were in further education or training (14 per cent), seeking work (5 per cent) or engaged in other activities, such as travel (4 per cent).

The strength of the growing economy is reflected in the fact that 90 per cent of those who graduated found employment within Ireland.

Paul O’Toole, chief executive of the Higher Education Authority, said it is clear there is a demand in Ireland for high-quality graduates coming out from our higher education institutions.

Mean starting salary for graduates working full time was €33,574, with most honours-degree graduates on a salary somewhere between €20,000 and €35,000.

Those with master’s degrees had average starting salaries of €40,849, while those with doctoral degrees had salaries of €45,325.

Carl O'Brien

Carl O'Brien

Carl O'Brien is Education Editor of The Irish Times. He was previously chief reporter and social affairs correspondent