A report from the College Board finds that the earnings gap between Americans with a college degree and those with only a high school diploma continues to grow, with bachelor’s-degree recipients now earning an average of $55,700 a year more than their less educated peers.
Part of a series of reports published every three years by the New York City-based organization, the data show that among women between the ages of 25 and 34, the median salaries for those with bachelor’s degrees was 79 percent higher in 2008 than it was for those whose education ended with high school graduation, up from 60 percent points a decade earlier. For men in that age group, the gap grew from 54 percent to 74 percent from 1998 to 2008.
The study also found that adults with college degrees have lower unemployment rates, cost the government less in social services, and involve their children in more educational activities than graduates with only a high school diploma.
A version of this article appeared in the September 29, 2010 edition of Education Week as College Payoff