Studying at university is a popular choice for many, with Great Britain housing over 100 universities for students to attend, and England alone being home to an impressive 106 higher education institutions.

Popularity across the globe in attending university is reflected in the breadth of subjects students can enroll on, from Music to Veterinary Science.

But with a higher education certificate aimed to further your knowledge and help kickstart your career, which subjects are producing the most profitable and successful graduates?

AppJobs has analysed UK Gov data to reveal the average salary graduates can expect to earn in each subject after the first five years of leaving university.

Analysing the average lower, median and upper salary in each subject, as well as the top salary recorded, AppJobs highlight both the courses and the universities with the top earning potential.

So, how profitable is your degree? 

The top 10 subjects producing the highest average median salary


Average median salary

Medicine & Dentistry






Pharmacology, Toxicology & Pharmacy


Mathematical Sciences


Veterinary Sciences


Physics & Astronomy


Architecture, Building & Planning






Medicine & Dentistry rank as the subjects earning the highest average annual salary amongst all graduates in the first five years after leaving university. Notorious for its difficulty to get into, becoming a doctor in the UK requires an average of five years of studying, with the journey to being a qualified GP continuing well after this, due to additional training programmes and placements. A degree in Dentistry also takes a similar period of time.

Sitting at just a three year course on average, Economics holds the second highest average salary at £39,700. With money being saved on tuition fees that stack up to a whopping £9,000 per year in the UK, Economics is an attractive subject to pursue for those wanting to earn more. Other subjects ranked in the top 10 include Politics, Engineering, and Architecture.

The subjects with the highest earnings potential and the universities producing the top earners

Whilst the average salary in each subject shows what students can expect to earn in their first five years of graduating, the highest earning potential in each course varies significantly. For the more ambitious students wanting to push the limits, it is important to see what the maximum possible salary has been earned in each course.

The top five subjects where graduates have gained the highest-salaries in their first five years of graduating include:

  1. Business & Management, University of Oxford: £144,000
  2. Economics, University of Cambridge: £129,000
  3. Computing, The University of Oxford: £94,400
  4. Law, The University of Oxford, £94,100
  5. Mathematical Sciences, The University of Oxford, £80,000

Business & Management students have the highest earning potential, with a graduate earning a jaw-dropping £144,000 during the first five years out of higher education. This figure is well above the average median salary for this subject, which sits at £27,100. Interestingly, this degree is also nearly three times more than the highest earning salary in Medicine & Dentistry, which is £59,000.

Humanities & Liberal Arts rank with the lowest earning potential, with its highest salary at £34,800. Education comes in second from the bottom with its top earner receiving £36,000. The University of Oxford produces the highest figure of top-earning graduates, with 12 of its subjects featuring in the top-salary list, including Law, Computing and Geography. The University of Cambridge has top earners in just four of its subjects, including Architecture and Psychology.

Iwona Polog, Head of Growth at AppJobs comments:

“Attending university is an opportunity to explore your interest in a subject, prepare for the working world and boost your career. The results highlight the importance of considering the job opportunities your degree subject can offer, and what to expect in your first few years of working life. It is also worth considering which university to attend, as each institution holds different earnings potential based on their graduates.

“The salary prospects of a subject are just one important aspect to consider when choosing a degree, with other factors such as location, assessment styles and job availability also influencing this decision.’

Sponsored Video

Register, Login or Login with your Social Media account:


Upcoming FE Events

Advertiser Skyscrapers

Latest Education News

Further Education News

The FE News Channel gives you the latest education news and updates on emerging education strategies and the #FutureofEducation and the #FutureofWork.

Providing trustworthy and positive Further Education news and views since 2003, we are a digital news channel with a mixture of written word articles, podcasts and videos. Our specialisation is providing you with a mixture of the latest education news, our stance is always positive, sector building and sharing different perspectives and views from thought leaders, to provide you with a think tank of new ideas and solutions to bring the education sector together and come up with new innovative solutions and ideas.

FE News publish exclusive peer to peer thought leadership articles from our feature writers, as well as user generated content across our network of over 3000 Newsrooms, offering multiple sources of the latest education news across the Education and Employability sectors.

FE News also broadcast live events, podcasts with leading experts and thought leaders, webinars, video interviews and Further Education news bulletins so you receive the latest developments in Skills News and across the Apprenticeship, Further Education and Employability sectors.

Every week FE News has over 200 articles and new pieces of content per week. We are a news channel providing the latest Further Education News, giving insight from multiple sources on the latest education policy developments, latest strategies, through to our thought leaders who provide blue sky thinking strategy, best practice and innovation to help look into the future developments for education and the future of work.

In Jan 2021, FE News had over 173,000 unique visitors according to Google Analytics and over 200 new pieces of news content every week, from thought leadership articles, to the latest education news via written word, podcasts, video to press releases from across the sector, putting us in the top 2,000 websites in the UK.

We thought it would be helpful to explain how we tier our latest education news content and how you can get involved and understand how you can read the latest daily Further Education news and how we structure our FE Week of content:

Main Features

Our main features are exclusive and are thought leadership articles and blue sky thinking with experts writing peer to peer news articles about the future of education and the future of work. The focus is solution led thought leadership, sharing best practice, innovation and emerging strategy. These are often articles about the future of education and the future of work, they often then create future education news articles. We limit our main features to a maximum of 20 per week, as they are often about new concepts and new thought processes. Our main features are also exclusive articles responding to the latest education news, maybe an insight from an expert into a policy announcement or response to an education think tank report or a white paper.

FE Voices

FE Voices was originally set up as a section on FE News to give a voice back to the sector. As we now have over 3,000 newsrooms and contributors, FE Voices are usually thought leadership articles, they don’t necessarily have to be exclusive, but usually are, they are slightly shorter than Main Features. FE Voices can include more mixed media with the Further Education News articles, such as embedded podcasts and videos. Our sector response articles asking for different comments and opinions to education policy announcements or responding to a report of white paper are usually held in the FE Voices section. If we have a live podcast in an evening or a radio show such as SkillsWorldLive radio show, the next morning we place the FE podcast recording in the FE Voices section.

Sector News

In sector news we have a blend of content from Press Releases, education resources, reports, education research, white papers from a range of contributors. We have a lot of positive education news articles from colleges, awarding organisations and Apprenticeship Training Providers, press releases from DfE to Think Tanks giving the overview of a report, through to helpful resources to help you with delivering education strategies to your learners and students.


We have a range of education podcasts on FE News, from hour long full production FE podcasts such as SkillsWorldLive in conjunction with the Federation of Awarding Bodies, to weekly podcasts from experts and thought leaders, providing advice and guidance to leaders. FE News also record podcasts at conferences and events, giving you one on one podcasts with education and skills experts on the latest strategies and developments.

We have over 150 education podcasts on FE News, ranging from EdTech podcasts with experts discussing Education 4.0 and how technology is complimenting and transforming education, to podcasts with experts discussing education research, the future of work, how to develop skills systems for jobs of the future to interviews with the Apprenticeship and Skills Minister.

We record our own exclusive FE News podcasts, work in conjunction with sector partners such as FAB to create weekly podcasts and daily education podcasts, through to working with sector leaders creating exclusive education news podcasts.

Education Video Interviews

FE News have over 700 FE Video interviews and have been recording education video interviews with experts for over 12 years. These are usually vox pop video interviews with experts across education and work, discussing blue sky thinking ideas and views about the future of education and work.


FE News has a free events calendar to check out the latest conferences, webinars and events to keep up to date with the latest education news and strategies.

FE Newsrooms

The FE Newsroom is home to your content if you are a FE News contributor. It also help the audience develop relationship with either you as an individual or your organisation as they can click through and ‘box set’ consume all of your previous thought leadership articles, latest education news press releases, videos and education podcasts.

Do you want to contribute, share your ideas or vision or share a press release?

If you want to write a thought leadership article, share your ideas and vision for the future of education or the future of work, write a press release sharing the latest education news or contribute to a podcast, first of all you need to set up a FE Newsroom login (which is free): once the team have approved your newsroom (all content, newsrooms are all approved by a member of the FE News team- no robots are used in this process!), you can then start adding content (again all articles, videos and podcasts are all approved by the FE News editorial team before they go live on FE News). As all newsrooms and content are approved by the FE News team, there will be a slight delay on the team being able to review and approve content.

 RSS IconRSS Feed Selection Page