Benefits of Returning to School as an Adult

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Degrees of Opportunity

Education is the one tangible product that the whole world respects.

Once achieved, it can never be taken away. It opens more doors, and offers more opportunities than any other single achievement.

Degrees of Opportunity survey respondent
Most American adults believe the benefits of education are worth the investment — and they see many ways that more education would enrich their own lives.

Even at a time when the cost of higher education is rising sharply — more than 200 percent in the last two decades1 — the Degrees of Opportunity survey found that American adults overwhelmingly believe that advanced learning is an investment that pays.

    • Nine out of 10 adults believe higher education is worth the time, energy, and money it requires. Sixty percent said that the benefits outweigh the investment, and 29 percent said the benefits equal the investment.
  • The top benefits that U.S. adults say they would gain from additional education reveal a rich mix of pragmatic, personal, and altruistic motivations:
    • Personal sense of accomplishment.
    • Developing talents/pursuing interests.
    • Earning a higher income.
    • Changing careers/industries.
    • Becoming expert in their field.
    • Being a good role model for their children.