Advertising Jobs Lead List of Careers, Offering Best Return on Investment

Bankrate studied the return on investment for 20 popular careers.

June 11, 2013 — -- intro: A new Bankrate study that estimates how long it would take to repay student loans according to career choice should help parents and students looking to invest those college dollars wisely.

With Friday's jobs report showing an uptick in the unemployment rate to 7.6 percent, students and parents need to put extra thought into which majors will offer the best prospects and return on investment after graduation.

Bankrate.com ranked 20 popular careers and related majors according to their median compensation and the amount of time it would take to repay student loans for each.

Jessica Patel, a personal finance analyst at Bankrate.com, said this was the first time the financial website had conducted such a study. Bankrate.com used the most recent data from the national Center for Education Statistics and the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

"With student loan rates as high as they are now and student loan debt increasingly growing, we wanted parents and children to have a tool for the best jobs for the money," Patel said.

Catch up on the Student Loan Overhaul Debate

In July, federal Stafford loan interest rates are expected to double to 6.8 percent. The average amount of debt from the college class of 2013 is $35,200, according to Fidelity.

After studying 20 popular careers, Patel said so-called "stable" careers, such as doctor or lawyer, often failed to offer a higher financial return, because of their higher educational costs.

"You don't need a graduate degree or don't need to go to school for as long as you think to have a well-paying job," she said.

A job in advertising or marketing, which does not require a post-graduate degree, was the career with the least amount of time to repay student debt. Assuming that 10 percent of one's salary goes toward repaying school loans, a median salary of $107,950, a total higher education cost of $52,596 (tuition, fees, room and board) and a 6 percent student loan interest rate, it would take 5.83 years to repay student debt.

Of the 20 careers, the job with the longest loan repayment time was marriage and family therapist, which requires about two years of graduate school. Assuming a salary of $46,670, it would take about 34.67 years to repay student debt in that field.

Here are 20 popular career choices analyzed by Bankrate.com.

quicklist:1category: 5.83 years to repaytitle: Advertising, Marketing, Promotionstext: Minimum required years of higher education: 4

Cost of degree: $52,596

Median pay: $107,950

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $10,795

quicklist:2category: 7.08 years to repaytitle: Economisttext: Minimum required years of higher education: 4

Cost of degree: $52,596

Median pay: $91,860

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $9,186

quicklist:3category: 8.50 years to repay title:Civil Engineertext:Minimum required years of higher education: 4

Cost of degree: $52,596

Median pay: $79,340

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $7,934

quicklist:4category: 8.58 years to repaytitle: Political Scientisttext:Minimum required years of higher education: 6

Cost of degree: $68,010

Median pay: $102,000

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $10,200

quicklist:5category: 10.83 years to repay title: Pharmacisttext:Minimum required years of higher education: 7

Cost of degree: $92,421

Median pay: $116,670

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $11,667

quicklist:6category: 10.83 years to repay title: Microbiologisttext:Minimum required years of higher education: 4

Cost of degree: $52,596

Median pay: $66,260

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $6,626

quicklist:7category: 10.92 years to repaytitle: Physician: Family or General Practitionertext:Minimum required years of higher education: 8

Cost of degree: $136,861

Median pay: $172,020

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $17,202

quicklist:8category: 11.50 years to repaytitle: Accountanttext:Minimum required years in higher education: 4

Cost of degree: $52,596

Median pay: $63,550

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $6,355

quicklist:9category: 12.42 years to repaytitle: Market Research Analysttext:Minimum required years of higher education: 4

Cost of degree: $52,596

Median pay: $60,300

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $6,030

quicklist:10category: 13.33 years to repay title: Lawyertext:Minimum required years of higher education: 7

Cost of degree: $103,677

Median pay: $113,530

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $11,353

quicklist:11category: 13.75 years to repay title: Dentist text:Minimum required years of higher education: 8

Cost of degree: $139,298

Median pay: $149,310

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $14,931

quicklist:12category: 14 years to repaytitle: Political Science Teacher: Post-Secondarytext:Minimum required years of higher education: 6

Cost of degree: $68,010

Median pay: $72,170

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $7,217

quicklist:13category: 14.67 years to repaytitle: Public Relations Specialisttext:Minimum required years of higher education: 4

Cost of degree: $52,596

Median pay: $54,170

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $5,417

quicklist:14category: 19.08 years to repaytitle: English Language/Literature Teacher: Post-Secondarytext:Minimum required years of higher education: 6

Cost of degree: $68,010

Median pay: $60,040

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $6,004

quicklist:15category: 20.58 years to repay title: Zoologist, Wildlife Biologisttext:Minimum required years of higher education: 6

Cost of degree: $68,010

Median pay: $57,710

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $5,771

quicklist:16category: 22.33 years to repay title: Librariantext:Minimum required years of higher education: 6

Cost of degree: $68,010

Median pay: $55,370

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $5,537

quicklist:17category: 21.75 years to repay title: Teacher (full-time)text:Minimum required years of higher education: 4

Cost of degree: $52,596

Median pay: $43,400

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $4,340

quicklist:category: 27.92 years to repay title: Veterinariantext:Minimum required years of higher education: 8

Cost of degree: $114,268

Median pay :$84,460

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $8,446

quicklist:category: 31.83 years to repay title: News Analyst, Reporter, Correspondenttext:Minimum required years of higher education: 4

Cost of degree: $52,596

Median pay: $37,090

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $3,709

quicklist:category: 34.67 years to repay title: Marriage and Family Therapisttext:Minimum required years of higher education: 6

Cost of degree: $68,010

Median pay: $46,670

Annual repayment at 10 percent of salary: $4,667

Read more about the College Class of 2013's $35,200 Average Debt.

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