Revealed: The Best Uni Degrees if You Want To Get A Job Fast

Want to earn big money soon after leaving uni? Avoid science, hospitality and psychology.

Instead, look to dentistry, medicine, pharmacy or rehabilitation.

And don’t, says Alex Jarman, expect too much from a degree in music and sound design.

In a cloud of steam, he brews up yet another café latte.

It is the only job he has found so far.

“There aren’t many jobs if you search for ‘Music Industry, Sydney’,” he says. “At the moment I am feeling I might have made a mistake.”

(Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

Rachel Wallace completed a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacology and Life Sciences to discover the real lessons came when she graduated.

“You’re not going to get a job with a generic degree,” she says. It took three more years of study, $90,000 in debt and a post-graduate finance degree before she got her current job, marketing baby formula.

“I do like what I’m doing,” she says, “but it has nothing to do with what I was studying.”

In a world where university is a rite of passage rather than a privilege for the elite few, there is a more critical focus than ever on which degrees are worth the time and money -- and which are not.

The reality is, despite forking out many thousands of dollars and investing years of their youth in arduous study, many Australians are being left on the employment scrap heap -- and now we know exactly which degrees are the most likely to get you a job.

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The Graduate Outcomes Survey 2018 has been released, showing how university graduates fare in terms of employment in the short-term (four months after leaving uni) and medium-term (three years later).

On the whole, it's mixed news -- people are waiting longer to get jobs, but salaries are up.

"Since the global financial crisis, it has taken graduates longer to successfully establish themselves in their careers," the GSO report outlined.

Overall, 67 percent of undergraduates had found full time work within four months of finishing their course, and 89.7 percent three years later.

The median salary for graduates was $56,700 in the short-term and $70,000 three years later.

But breaking that down further into study areas showed how vastly different the employment outcomes for different courses can be.

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Anything in health works well. Within four months of leaving uni full time employment is high in pharmacy (95.5 percent), medicine (93.3), dentistry (88.2) and rehabilitation (87.2).

But tourism and hospitality (48 percent), creative arts (48.3), and perhaps surprisingly, science and mathematics (also 48.3) fare poorly.

Three years later, it's much the same story. Topping the list of full-time employment are medicine (97.5 percent), dentistry (95.9), rehabilitation (97.2) and engineering, which increased from 71.5 percent in the short-term to 93.9 medium-term.

And still at the bottom, three years later, is creative arts at 80.4 percent full-time employment, with the other poor performers - humanities (82.5), psychology (83.3), and communications (84.3).

The best universities for medium-term employment include Charles Sturt (93.6 percent of graduates finding full-time work three years after finishing), Murdoch (93.2) and the University of Technology Sydney (92.7).

The universities with the highest graduate median income three years after finishing are Charles Sturt ($78,300), University of NSW ($77,500) and Central Queensland Uni ($77,200).

The advice from graduate labour market researcher Dr David Carroll is simple: look before you leap.

“Tertiary education is one of the biggest decisions a person will make and like any other huge decision it requires people to collect information before they embark.”