Finishing a degree program is a milestone for anybody wishing to have a successful life in the traditional way of “get a diploma, get a job.” However, nothing is more frustrating than working hard for something and realizing that all your hard work amounted to nothing. This article will discuss some of the most useless college degrees to avoid spending time, resources, and effort on a degree with little to no capability to give you a decent return on investment.
However, before we start enumerating the degrees, let’s first understand why some degrees are deemed useless.
Useless College Degrees? Here are Reasons Why
Listed below are the most practical reasons why some degrees are labeled as the “most useless degrees in today’s society”:
Bad Job Outlook
A certain graduate degree may have a bad job outlook due to the oversaturation of the market, the lack of demand for such skills, or the rise of automation and new technologies.
For example, some humanities, fine arts, or social sciences degrees may not have a clear career path, making it difficult for graduates to find work in their field.
Low-Paying Job Prospects
Some degrees may have low-paying job prospects due to a variety of reasons, such as an oversupply of labor, a lack of skills that are highly valued in the job market, or a lack of bargaining power on the part of employees.
For example, some degrees in education or arts may pay less than degrees earned in engineering, criminal justice, and especially business due to the lower demand for such skills in today’s job market. More money in a certain field means that the said field is highly regarded as relevant and necessary in the continuous existence of mankind in today’s world!
Small Job Market
A bachelor’s degree in certain fields may have a small job market due to a lack of opportunities or specialized knowledge necessary for the field to thrive or be relevant in society.
For example, a bachelor’s degree in a specific language or culture may have a limited or declining job market, as the demand for such skills may be restricted to specific regions or industries.
Some degrees may be deemed useless college degrees due to outdated knowledge or skillsets, especially in fields that evolve quickly with new technologies and research. For example, some degrees in computer science or information technology may not provide students with up-to-date knowledge or practical skills that are in high demand in the job market.
Even the college professor that is teaching said “outdated knowledge” is aware of the obsolescence of certain facts and ideas in their teaching fields.
There are different types of degrees out there, so picking the right one from the start allows you to save time if you plan on pursuing higher academic studies.
List of Useless College Degrees
Anthropology And Archeology
A degree in Anthropology and Archaeology provides a broad understanding of human behavior and culture throughout history. Not only will you be studying human history, but you will also spend time understanding cultures, practices, and all other aspects of what life was like in the past. Job opportunities include working for museums, universities, and research organizations.
These degrees can interest those who are very fond of knowing what life, as a whole, was like before. However, they may not lead to many job opportunities unless combined with additional education or experience in fields like museum curation, cultural resource management, or academia. In a world full of “forward thinking”, spending a whole lot of time in the past does not seem to be a good plan.
Culinary Arts Degree
A Culinary Arts degree is ideal for those who are passionate about creating delicious food and drinks. People who are fond of pleasing the palate and studying the art and science of cooking will surely be attracted to this degree. Graduates can work as chefs, restaurant managers, caterers, and food critics.
While culinary arts can be a rewarding career path for some, it’s a highly competitive industry with many low-paying jobs. Of course, there are restaurants that rose in popularity and even earned some Michelin stars, but not everyone can be employed in such kitchens. Some people argue that getting a degree in this field may not be necessary, as on-the-job training and experience may be more valuable.
A degree in a foreign language can lead to careers in teaching, translating, interpreting, and international business. It is also a valuable asset for those seeking to work or study in foreign countries.
Learning a language can be useful in many professions, however, a language degree is relatively one of the most useless college degrees out there, especially if you don’t have other knowledge or skills in the realm of human endeavor. It may be more practical to learn a language as a secondary skill to complement a degree in a more in-demand field.
Ethnic and Civilization Studies
This degree provides a broad understanding of various ethnic groups and civilizations throughout history. You will delve deep into the study of every ethnic culture and how civilizations were established. Job opportunities include working for government agencies, non-profit organizations, and educational institutions.
Similar to anthropology and archaeology, these degrees may not lead to many direct job opportunities. Having a four-year degree focusing on the lives of ethnic groups and the logic of civilization will not provide you with the necessary skills and competencies to be versatile in today’s society.
Studio Arts and Fine Arts
Focusing mainly on developing your artistic skills and being well-versed in every aspect of fine art is the main focus of this degree. Not only will you be enhancing your individual skills in art but you will also spend time learning art history. Graduates with a degree in Fine Arts can become artists, art historians, and art teachers, and work in galleries or museums. It can also be a useful degree for those interested in advertising or graphic design.
These degrees can be useful for those interested in careers in creative fields like graphic design or advertising. Graphic design is, after all, highly in-demand in digital marketing! However, they may not lead to many job opportunities in the fine arts themselves, and many artists rely on freelance work or self-promotion to make a living.
Think about it, most prized paintings were only sold for millions due to their historical value and rarity.
Theater Arts Degree
A theatre arts degree is an academic program that provides students with knowledge and skills related to various aspects of theatre, such as high levels of acting skills, directing, stage management, set design, and creative writing of stories and theater ideas.
However, many consider it one of the most useless degrees because of the limited job opportunities and low salaries in the field. Graduates may struggle to find consistent work in the competitive and unpredictable world of theatre, and even when they do find work, they may earn low wages, especially early in their careers. Additionally, some argue that theatre is not a practical or necessary area of study and that individuals interested in pursuing it should do so as a hobby rather than a career.
Think about it, the celebrities themselves come and go… what more the people whose role is not directly flashed on by the spotlight.
Travel and Tourism Degree
From understanding maps all over the world, finding ways to promote a specific part of the globe, and even understanding travel etiquette- a travel and tourism degree will give you the necessary knowledge and skills for these tasks. This degree prepares students for careers in the tourism industry, including travel agents, tour guides, and hospitality management.
While travel and tourism can be a fun and exciting industry, it’s also highly competitive and may not offer many high-paying jobs. Some people argue that it may be more practical to gain experience through internships or on-the-job training rather than getting a specific degree.
Philosophy Degree and Philosophy Majors
A degree in Philosophy can lead to careers in law, education, writing, and consulting. Philosophy majors are expected to have great analytical skills and their thinking encompasses more than just surface-level thinking but also includes the rationalization of every thought the mind comes up with.
While studying philosophy can be intellectually stimulating and it is quite useful in the fields of law, politics, or academia, it may not lead to many direct job opportunities. A specific example is: you can’t get into law if you don’t finish law school. That means, no matter how good your thought processes are, qualifications definitely matter in today’s society! So, we’ve included philosophy among the most useless college degrees!
Psychology degree holders study human behavior, mental processes, and the brain, and may find employment in fields such as counseling, therapy, education, or research. Graduates with a degree in Psychology can work in various areas, including counseling, research, human resources, and social work.
While psychology can be a rewarding and important field, it’s also highly competitive and may require additional education such as a master’s degree or long relevant experience to stand out in the job market. Some people argue that it may be more practical to pursue a degree in a related field like social work or counseling.
A degree in Communications prepares students for careers in journalism, public relations, marketing, and advertising. For four years, you will be focusing on improving your skills in interacting and communicating with various types of people.
While having solid communication skills is vital to be a successful person, it is still a useless degree because of the fact that improving your communication skills does not necessarily require a diploma in your credentials.
Liberal Arts Degree
Liberal arts degree holders gain a broad education in various subjects such as humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. They may find employment in fields such as education, journalism, law, or research, where a broad understanding of different subjects is valued.
Liberal arts degrees can provide a broad education and develop critical thinking skills, but they may not lead to many direct job opportunities. However, they can be useful for those interested in pursuing careers in education, law, or business.
Here’s a quick video about the most useless degrees:
Why Do Some People Still Pursue Useless College Degrees?
Imagine singing in front of millions of fans while earning millions of dollars due to your music career, or being so good in fashion design that powerful people all over the world spend precious hours of their life just to watch your runway shows. Events like this occurring will definitely send you to cloud nine- IF YOU SUCCEED IN THE PATH YOU PURSUED.
To have a lucrative career, in reality, is like finding a needle in a barn of haystacks. If your songs don’t click and your fashion design degree can’t help you think of amazing designs, keep in mind that the bills and reality do not offer momentary life timeouts.
Possibility of A Well Paying Career Path
The bigger the risk, the bigger the reward!
Some people may still pursue degrees that are deemed useless due to the possibility of a well-paying career path. Even though the job market may not be in demand for their particular degree, some industries still offer good salaries for individuals with specialized skills and knowledge.
An example of this specific point is pursuing theater arts or performing arts and working diligently on your acting classes. If the stars align perfectly, stardom awaits. Think about the fame and fortune you can have throughout your career!
However, think about the number of people that never made the cut.
Passion or Dream Job
Some individuals may choose to pursue the useless degrees mentioned above due to their burning passion or belief that they’re pursuing their “dream job”.
They may have a strong interest in a particular subject and may not be deterred by the job market or the low-paying job prospects associated with their degree. They are willing to take risks and work towards their goal, regardless of the potential outcome.
Transferable Skills or Acquired Practices
Individuals may pursue a university degree that is deemed useless because they believe that the knowledge and skills they acquired throughout their life are necessary and sufficient enough for them to excel in the fields they are pursuing.
No matter how tough the market is or how little the pay is, nothing beats the mindset of being a certain field’s “chosen one.”
Early Childhood Education
Finally, some people may pursue useless college degrees because they were inspired by their early childhood education. For example, someone who loved dinosaurs as a child may pursue a degree in paleontology, even though job prospects may be limited.
Early childhood education can have a strong influence on a person’s future aspirations and career choices, and even logical reasoning regardless of the perceived usefulness of the degree.
Final Thoughts on the Most Useless College Degrees
While all types of degrees have their own importance and purpose in society, some may be deemed irrelevant or useless in the context of finding a stable job and financial stability. This is mainly because some “useless” college degrees are not in high demand in the job market or do not offer clear career paths.
This does not necessarily mean that the knowledge and skills acquired by college majors pursuing these degrees are completely worthless or in vain, but rather that the potential job prospects or financial return may not justify the money and time invested in pursuing these degrees.
It is important for individuals to weigh the benefits and drawbacks of pursuing certain degrees and to consider their career aspirations and financial goals before making a decision.
If you want to view the best college degrees, here’s a video about them: