THE BLOG
06/14/2013 06:18 pm ET | Updated Aug 14, 2013

Going Back to School as Adults: Wise Investment or Waste of Time?

Although once considered unconventional, returning to school as an adult is now en vogue, having become the fastest-growing demographic in colleges across the United States.

From 2000 to 2010, the National Center for Education Statistics reported a staggering 42 percent increase in college students age 25 and older, compared to the 34 percent increase in students younger than 25. Figures also show that adults ages 30 to 64 are most likely to hold master's, professional, and doctoral advanced degrees.

The findings are courtesy of Northeastern University, released in an infographic examining the trend toward adult college education in the U.S. Statistics also reveal the extent to which attaining an advanced degree pays off: For those holding graduate degrees, average earnings in 2012 were 35 percent higher than those with bachelor's degrees. As expected, careers in health care and social/behavioral sciences pay the highest, followed by arts/humanities and business/ communication.

Here's the complete look in Northeastern's infographic:

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