A Comparison of Salaries: University Professors in the U.S. and Internationally

Are University Professors in the U.S. Underpaid?

It’s no secret that teachers’ salaries pale in comparison to many other occupations, but does the same hold true for university professors?

Even though the U.S. has the highest number of schools on the U.S. News & World Report’s ‘World’s Best Universities’ list – 83 – its professors may actually be making less than those in similar positions in other countries. It may not help, either, that the U.S. often offers part-time faculty positions in lieu of full-time employment, as The New York Times points out. This may push postsecondary teachers to look for other jobs that are full-time, offer benefits, and the opportunity to work toward tenure elsewhere. They might look to nearby countries or positions abroad to find more satisfactory jobs or, even within the U.S., to private institutions, where pay is typically higher than at public colleges.

Does this mean that public schools and universities face a potential ‘brain drain,’ as the Times calls it, down the road? Take a look at our infographic below for more information.


  1. “World’s Best Universities: About the Rankings,” U.S. News & World Report, October 2012.
  2. “How Much is  Professor Worth?” The New York Times, April 2012.

Please view the infographic for a full list of sources.

Are University Professors in the U.S. Underpaid?
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