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STEM Majors Way Up, Humanities Down, among Washington College Students, New Data Show

By August 22, 2018No Comments

For years now, experts have hammered this message home to students: If you want your pricey college degree to pay off, you should major in a STEM field— science, technology, engineering or math.

A fresh release of higher-education data for Washington state shows just how well students have listened.

The information from Washington’s Education Research & Data Centerreleased this month shows that the number of students majoring in STEM disciplines has been growing at a ferocious pace since the end of the recession. (The trend is true nationally, too.)

Meanwhile, humanities and liberal-arts majors — including English, history, philosophy and foreign languages — are languishing.

In 2016-17 — the latest year for which data are available — the number of students majoring in computer science more than tripled. Related fields also saw boom times — the new discipline of informatics went from 100 graduates in 2012-13 to 190 graduates in 2016-17. (The University of Washington, which offers an informatics program, defines it as “the study, design, and development of information technology for the good of people, organizations, and society.”)