Top 10 College Majors Doomed to Be Unemployed

As back to school time is back in full swing, it is time to reflect on college…The time when we choose what we love so we can do it for the rest of our lives…except, thanks to the Great Recession, that is not always the case. So Here are Top 10 College Majors Doomed to Be Unemployed.

Many of us plan to do focused study on one area for at least four years. We want to make sure we’ve chosen a worthwhile course of study. Plus, with student loan debts, we want to know that the money we have put towards funding the course will ultimately benefit us so that we can, uh, you know to use it to get a job. But choose any of these ten majors and you might as well study video gaming or fly catching for four years…that’s what the statistics say anyway.

10) Anthropology and Archeology.


This major has a 10.5% unemployment rating (1) once students have graduated. That means over a tenth of people will not be able to find Anthropology and Archeology related work. We all need money to keeps us going in life! And perhaps that approximately $31,000 according to, (2) could be spent better. You know, you could get a jet ski or something.

A better course of study might be to look at human science or History majors. Some Collages will also combine the two into a course. It’s worth searching around for information on these, because when you got into the job market these are more recognizable majors. For example, Princeton University’s History major (3) allows students to study Ancient Greece, Rome,  Europe, Latin America, the Middle Ages, Russia, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Okay you get it; there are a lot of different things to study. All subjects relating to past and present human societies.

9) Philosophy and religious studies.


This has an unemployment rate of 10.8% (1). Ouch! I think sometimes employers struggle to know what this degree really represents. Imagine before you were even introduced to the idea of Philosophy how much you would understand it.

It is worth considering, if you don’t specifically want to go into the religious sector, looking for a major with more easily identifiable aims. If you are interested specifically in questioning the world around you, you could look into scientific or human research related majors. Often called research methods. Or if you study Philosophy make it explicitly clear on your resume just WHAT that means when applying for jobs. How will it help you in this job you are applying to? Let them know!

8) Film, video and photographic studies.


This major is very specific and to the film industry and provides you with a great technical and theoretical knowledge of the area! It’s one drawback however is the specific ness of a film, video and photographic major. Consider your potential job market. It can be hard to get started in the film industry. People often favor experience with successful projects over newly graduated students. That is why, in 2012 this major had a 12.9% unemployment rating (1) after the course has finished.

An alternative to this would be looking at a course covering a wider area of the media an arts industry. For example, The Film and Media major offered by Stanford (4). Sure getting in is incredibly tough, but check out their syllabus and you can find other programs similar to it. This is also a great way to help you along your way is to find small film projects to work on. Build contacts and a successful track history. This is often the route successful graduates take for a few years before they get a big break to work on a feature film. Hey, Spielberg!

7) Fine art.


Again much like Film studies, this course prepares you for a very specific area of the art industry. Which can be a great thing! This course; however, has a similar unemployment rate of 12.6%. Boo!

As an alternative, you could look at broader art majors that would open up your potential employment and also give you a chance to experience areas of art you haven’t experimented with before! It might be that the extra artistic discipline areas could be a source of backup income if they were more desirable for real world paid projects. These courses often have a lot of course work that may also allow you to choose to specialize in fine art during these! So really look around your possibilities are endless.

6) Music.

Top 10 College Majors Doomed to Be Unemployed

This major is not as bad as some of the previous listings in terms of unemployment, but still a 9.2% unemployment rate is not exactly ideal. With this course, you really have to assess what you want in the future. If you want to compose or do a job requiring precise working theoretical knowledge, then that’s great and this course is ideal! Go for it!

But if you want to be the next Jack White, you might as well become an upholsterer or join a seminary. See, if you are leaning more toward playing music, making records and playing gigs, you will require less of this knowledge. In fact this area of the music sector gets the most jobs or gigs by word of mouth. Getting out playing small gigs and working up to bigger ones. If people like what you do, you will start to build up a fan base to keep your career going way into the future!

5) Physical fitness and Park Recreations.


Yes, that is a real major, but not the most practical one. Similar to the other majors mentioned above, remember to think about what your major would mean to an employer. If you knew nothing about the major what would you infer from the title ‘Physical Fitness and Park Recreations?’ It is too specific an area of physical fitness!

A broader major could be Health and fitness offered by many colleges, the top ones including The University of Michigan, Illinois, Texas, Georgia and many more according to (5)

4)  Graphic Design.


Surprisingly this major is consistently one showing high unemployment figures. It figures currently stand at 11.8% (1) unemployment for new graduates.

However, this is a tricky one, because many graphic designers are freelancers, SO if these majors build up a strong portfolio that will help you later on with job hunting (6).

3) Clinical Psychology.


Super surprising, but unemployment figures are a whopping 19.5% . (7)An explanation for this is that a psychology degree does not prepare you to be a psychologist as most students who enroll hope. That comes at the grad student level. If you want work as a psychologist make sure you know and are both mentally and physically prepared to go on from your psychology major to study medicine as well.

An explanation for this is that a psychology degree does not prepare you to be a psychologist as most students who enroll hope. That comes at the grad student level. If you want work as a psychologist make sure you know and are both mentally and physically prepared to go on from your psychology major to study medicine as well.

2)  Library science.


Poor librarians…15.0% of graduates are unemployed when finishing this course of study (6).

This is because really the only job you can take with this area of study is becoming a librarian, and we all know how the libraries are doing.

If you are not sure you want to become a librarian but are interested, perhaps consider a broader English or literature major. Keep your options open.

1) US History.


15.1% of graduates face unemployment (6). This is another subject where you really need to assess how much you really want to specialize in this are and where it will get you. See, many people who want to go to law school will take this, but you can major in literally anything and go to law school. I had a friend who majored in medicine and another in music…both are now lawyers.