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Pharmaceutical Sciences Major

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Pharmaceutical Sciences

965 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
262 Master's Degrees Annually
#30 in Popularity
$96,420 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Pharmaceutical Sciences Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many pharmaceutical sciences graduations there were in 2019-2020 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Bachelor’s Degree 1,157
Master’s Degree 257
Doctor’s Degree 200
Associate Degree 1

What Pharmaceutical Sciences Majors Need to Know

People with careers related to pharmaceutical sciences 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 Pharmaceutical Sciences Majors

This major prepares you for careers in which these knowledge areas are important:

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  • Medicine and Dentistry - Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
  • Biology - Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Chemistry - Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

Skills for Pharmaceutical Sciences Majors

A major in pharmaceutical sciences prepares you for careers in which the following skill-sets are crucial:

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  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • 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.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Science - Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.

Abilities for Pharmaceutical Sciences Majors

As a pharmaceutical sciences 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.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).

What Can You Do With a Pharmaceutical Sciences Major?

People with a pharmaceutical sciences degree often go into the following careers:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Medical Scientists, Except Epidemiologists 13.4% $84,810
Pharmacists 5.6% $126,120

Who Is Getting a Bachelor’s Degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences?

1,157 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
64% Percent Women
38% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
This major is dominated by women with about 64% of recent graduates being female.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of pharmaceutical sciences majors is as follows:

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Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 283
Black or African American 53
Hispanic or Latino 61
White 646
International Students 48
Other Races/Ethnicities 66

Geographic Diversity

Americans aren’t the only ones with an interest in Pharmaceutical Sciences. About 4.1% of those with this major are international students.

How Much Do Pharmaceutical Sciences Majors Make?

Salaries According to BLS

Pharmaceutical Sciences majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $96,420 to $123,670 (25th to 75th percentile). 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 Pharmaceutical Sciences Major  ( 96420 to 123670 )
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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 pharmaceutical sciences require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.

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

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
Bachelor’s Degree 7.3%
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. 6.9%
Master’s Degree 11.0%
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. 0.2%
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. 21.2%
Doctoral Degree 33.4%
Post-Doctoral Training 20.3%

Online Pharmaceutical Sciences Programs

In 2019-2020, 62 schools offered a pharmaceutical sciences 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) 0 0
Certificate (1-2 years) 0 0
Certificate (2-4 Years) 0 0
Associate’s Degree 1 0
Bachelor’s Degree 1 0
Post-Baccalaureate 0 0
Master’s Degree 43 0
Post-Master’s 2 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 31 0
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

Is a Degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences Worth It?

The median salary for a pharmaceutical sciences grad is $96,420 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 142% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $1,130,400 after 20 years!

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to pharmaceutical sciences.

Major Number of Grads
Pharmacy 15,416
Other Pharmacy, Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Administration 824
Pharmaceutics and Drug Design 542
Pharmacy Administration and Pharmacy Policy and Regulatory Affairs 281
Clinical and Industrial Drug Development 223
Medicinal and Pharmaceutical Chemistry 177
Pharmacoeconomics/Pharmaceutical Economics 152
Industrial and Physical Pharmacy and Cosmetic Sciences 79
Pharmaceutical Marketing and Management 73
Clinical, Hospital, and Managed Care Pharmacy 35
Natural Products Chemistry and Pharmacognosy 19

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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