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Historic Preservation Major

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Historic Preservation

226 Master's Degrees Annually
2 Doctor's Degrees Annually
#198 in Popularity (Master's)
$56,400 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Historic Preservation Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many historic preservation graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Master’s Degree 226
Graduate Certificate 64
Doctor’s Degree 2

What Historic Preservation Majors Need to Know

O*NET surveyed people in occupations related to historic preservation and asked them what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important for their jobs. The responses were rated on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most important.

Knowledge Areas for Historic Preservation Majors

According to O*NET survey takers, a major in historic preservation should prepare you for careers in which you will need to be knowledgeable in the following areas:

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  • History and Archeology - Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • 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.
  • Clerical - Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

Skills for Historic Preservation Majors

When studying historic preservation, you’ll learn many skills that will help you be successful in a wide range of jobs - even those that do not require a degree in the field. The following is a list of some of the most common skills needed for careers associated with this major:

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  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • 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.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Abilities for Historic Preservation Majors

As a historic preservation major, you will find yourself needing the following abilities:

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  • 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.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.

What Can You Do With a Historic Preservation Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with historic preservation:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Archivists 14.7% $52,240
Historians 6.1% $61,140

Who Is Getting a Master’s Degree in Historic Preservation?

226 Master's Degrees Annually
79% Percent Women
17% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities
This major is dominated by women with about 79% of recent graduates being female.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of historic preservation majors is as follows:

Racial-Ethnic Diversity of Historic Preservation Students with Master's Degrees
Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 6
Black or African American 7
Hispanic or Latino 14
White 140
International Students 34
Other Races/Ethnicities 25

Geographic Diversity

Americans aren’t the only ones with an interest in Historic Preservation. About 15.0% of those with this major are international students. The most popular countries for students from outside the country are:

  • China
  • India
  • Saudi Arabia
  • South Korea
  • Taiwan

How Much Do Historic Preservation Majors Make?

Master’s Degree Starting Salary

The U.S. Department of Education found that students who graduated in 2015-2017 with a master’s degree in historic preservation made a median starting salary of $37,700 per year. During this timeframe, most salaries fell between $36,250 (25th percentile) and $39,150 (75th percentile).

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We don’t know for sure if all of these people took jobs related to historic preservation so take that into consideration.

Salaries According to BLS

Historic Preservation majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $56,400 to $66,380 (25th to 75th percentile). This range includes all degree levels, so you may expect those with a more advanced degree to make more while those with less advanced degrees will typically make less.

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 Historic Preservation Major  ( 56400 to 66380 )
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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 historic preservation 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.

Find out what the typical degree level is for historic preservation careers below.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
Less than a High School Diploma 3.2%
High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED) 3.3%
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) 5.4%
Some College Courses 6.4%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 0.2%
Bachelor’s Degree 15.6%
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. 2.1%
Master’s Degree 60.5%
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%

Online Historic Preservation Programs

In 2018-2019, 75 schools offered a historic preservation 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) 12 0
Certificate (1-2 years) 4 0
Certificate (2-4 Years) 2 0
Associate’s Degree 6 0
Bachelor’s Degree 24 2
Post-Baccalaureate 12 0
Master’s Degree 41 2
Post-Master’s 8 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 1 0
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

Is a Degree in Historic Preservation Worth It?

The median salary for a historic preservation grad is $56,400 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 41% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $330,000 after 20 years!

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to historic preservation.

Major Number of Grads
Other Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies 37,392
Biological & Physical Science 29,278
International Studies 7,967
Interdisciplinary Studies 6,609
Nutrition Science 4,794
Behavioral Science 3,731
Natural Sciences 2,571
Cognitive Science 2,275
Sustainability Science 2,194
Human Biology 1,460
Peace Studies & Conflict Resolution 1,310
Gerontology 1,281
Human Computer Interaction 1,272
Science, Technology & Society 1,171
Mathematics & Computer Science 1,105
Computational Science 927
Systems Theory 917
Museum Studies 801
Dispute Resolution 668
Multicultural & Diversity Studies 424
Classical & Ancient Studies 303
Marine Science 275
Cultural Studies & Analysis 227
Biopsychology 165
Medieval Studies 108
Accounting & Computer Science 71
Maritime Studies 45
Holocaust Studies 40

References

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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