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General Family & Consumer Sciences Major

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General Family & Consumer Sciences

3,142 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
498 Master's Degrees Annually
#102 in Popularity
$64,340 Median Salary

Types of Degrees General Family & Consumer Sciences Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many general family and consumer sciences graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Bachelor’s Degree 3,142
Master’s Degree 498
Doctor’s Degree 54
Associate’s Degree 51
Graduate Certificate 7
Basic Certificate 1

What General Family & Consumer Sciences Majors Need to Know

People with careers related to consumer science were asked what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important for their jobs. They weighted these areas on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the highest.

Knowledge Areas for Consumer Science Majors

Consumer Science majors often go into careers in which the following knowledge areas are important:

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  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

Skills for Consumer Science Majors

consumer science majors are found most commonly in careers in which the following skills are important:

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  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Instructing - Teaching others how to do something.
  • Learning Strategies - Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.

Abilities for Consumer Science Majors

As you progress with your consumer science degree, there are several abilities you should pick up that will help you in whatever related career you choose. These abilities include:

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  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.

What Can You Do With a General Family & Consumer Sciences Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with consumer science:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Farm and Home Management Advisors 7.7% $49,840
Home Economics Professors 8.6% $71,380
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education 7.5% $60,320

Who Is Getting a Bachelor’s Degree in General Family & Consumer Sciences?

3,142 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
88% Percent Women
53% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
This is a less frequently chosen undergraduate major. Only 3,142 students graduated with a bachelor’s degree in general family and consumer sciences in 2019, making it rank #102 in popularity. The major attracts more women than men. About 88% of the recent graduates in this field are female.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of consumer science majors is as follows:

Racial-Ethnic Diversity of Consumer Science Students with Bachelor's Degrees
Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 241
Black or African American 604
Hispanic or Latino 682
White 1,319
International Students 80
Other Races/Ethnicities 216

Geographic Diversity

Consumer Science appeals to people across the globe. About 2.5% of those with this major are international students. The most popular countries for students from outside the country are:

  • China
  • South Korea
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Japan
  • Iran

How Much Do General Family & Consumer Sciences Majors Make?

Bachelor’s Degree Starting Salary

According to 2017-2018 data from the U.S. Department of Education, students who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in consumer science have a median salary of $27,300 during the early years of their career. During this timeframe, most salaries fell between $24,900 (25th percentile) and $29,300 (75th percentile).

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One thing to note here is that not all of these people may be working in careers related to consumer science.

Salaries According to BLS

Average salaries range from $52,700 to $77,170 (25th to 75th percentile) for careers related to consumer science. This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.

To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.

Median Salary for a General Family & Consumer Sciences Major  ( 52700 to 77170 )
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250K
Median Salary for a High School Graduate  ( 30000 to 57900 )
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250K
Median Salary for a Bachelor's Degree Holder  ( 45600 to 99000 )
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250K
Median Salary for an Advanced Degree Holder  ( 55600 to 125400 )
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250K

Some careers associated with consumer science require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. Whatever the case may be, pursuing more education usually means that more career options will be available to you.

How much schooling do you really need to compete in today’s job market? People currently working in careers related to consumer science have obtained the following education levels.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production) 0.7%
Some College Courses 0.4%
Bachelor’s Degree 27.1%
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Baccalaureate degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees carrying the title of Master. 9.2%
Master’s Degree 38.1%
Post-Master’s Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Master’s degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees at the doctoral level. 3.4%
First Professional Degree - awarded for completion of a program that: requires at least 2 years of college work before entrance into the program, includes a total of at least 6 academic years of work to complete, and provides all remaining academic requirements to begin practice in a profession. 0.1%
Doctoral Degree 21.0%
Post-Doctoral Training 0.3%

Online General Family & Consumer Sciences Programs

In 2018-2019, 124 schools offered a consumer science program of some type. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.

Degree Level Colleges Offering Programs Colleges Offering Online Classes
Certificate (Less Than 1 Year) 4 0
Certificate (1-2 years) 1 0
Certificate (2-4 Years) 0 0
Associate’s Degree 18 3
Bachelor’s Degree 2 2
Post-Baccalaureate 4 0
Master’s Degree 38 11
Post-Master’s 1 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 8 0
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

Is a Degree in General Family & Consumer Sciences Worth It?

The median salary for a consumer science grad is $64,340 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 61% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $488,800 after 20 years!

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to consumer science.

Major Number of Grads
Human Development & Family Studies 43,687
Food, Nutrition & Related Services 5,318
Textile & Apparel Studies 3,476
Family & Consumer Economics 1,593
Housing 785
Human Sciences Business Services 477
Family, Consumer & Human Sciences (Other) 192
Work & Family Studies 0

References

*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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