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March 21, 2007
Census Data Show How Much an Education Pays

Adults with advanced degrees earn four times more than those with less than a high school diploma, according to data released by the U.S. Census Bureau.

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The Census Bureau says adults 18 and older with a master's, professional, or doctoral degree earned an average of $79,946, while those with less than a high school diploma earned about $19,915.

Adults with a bachelor's degree earned an average of $54,689 in 2005, while those with a high school diploma earned $29,448.

In 2006, 86 percent of all adults 25 and older reported they had completed at least high school. More than one-quarter (28 percent) of adults 25 and older had attained at least a bachelor's degree.

High school graduation rates for women 25 and older continued to exceed those of men, 86 percent and 85 percent, respectively. However, a larger proportion of men held a bachelor's degree or higher (29 percent compared with 27 percent of women).

Minnesota and Alaska had the highest proportions of people 25 and older with a high school diploma or higher (around 93 percent).

The District of Columbia had the highest proportion of people 25 and older with a bachelor's degree or higher (49 percent).

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