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Funeral & Mortuary Science Major

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Funeral & Mortuary Science

1,286 Associate's Degrees Annually
196 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
#25 in Popularity (Associate's)
$57,620 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Funeral & Mortuary Science Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many funeral and mortuary science graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Associate’s Degree 1,286
Undergraduate Certificate 311
Basic Certificate 172

What Funeral & Mortuary Science Majors Need to Know

O*NET surveyed people in occupations related to mortuary science and asked them what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important for their jobs. The responses were rated on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most important.

Knowledge Areas for Mortuary Science Majors

Mortuary Science majors often go into careers in which the following knowledge areas are important:

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  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Clerical - Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.

Skills for Mortuary Science Majors

When studying mortuary science, you’ll learn many skills that will help you be successful in a wide range of jobs - even those that do not require a degree in the field. The following is a list of some of the most common skills needed for careers associated with this major:

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  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • 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.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others’ reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others’ actions.

Abilities for Mortuary Science Majors

Mortuary Science majors often go into careers where the following abilities are vital:

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  • 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.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.

What Can You Do With a Funeral & Mortuary Science Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with mortuary science:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Funeral Service Managers 7.0% $79,180
Morticians, Undertakers, and Funeral Directors 3.8% $52,650

Who Is Getting an Associate’s Degree in Funeral & Mortuary Science?

1,286 Associate's Degrees Annually
65% Percent Women
30% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities
Funeral and Mortuary Science runs middle of the road when it comes to popularity, ranking #25 out of all the trade school majors we track. In 2019, about 1,286 graduates completed their associate’s degree in this field. This major is dominated by women with about 65% of recent graduates being female.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of mortuary science majors is as follows:

Racial-Ethnic Diversity of Mortuary Science Students with Associate's Degrees
Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 8
Black or African American 219
Hispanic or Latino 134
White 871
International Students 4
Other Races/Ethnicities 50

Geographic Diversity

Americans aren’t the only ones with an interest in Mortuary Science. About 0.3% of those with this major are international students. The most popular countries for students from outside the country are:

  • Jamaica
  • Venezuela
  • Japan

How Much Do Funeral & Mortuary Science Majors Make?

Salaries According to BLS

Mortuary Science majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $46,640 to $93,820 (25th to 75th percentile). This range includes all degree levels, so you may expect those with a more advanced degree to make more while those with less advanced degrees will typically make less.

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 Funeral & Mortuary Science Major  ( 46640 to 93820 )
0K
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 degrees associated with mortuary science may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. 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.

Find out what the typical degree level is for mortuary science careers below.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED) 3.0%
Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production) 9.4%
Some College Courses 2.7%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 64.0%
Bachelor’s Degree 13.5%
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. 4.0%
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. 4.5%

Online Funeral & Mortuary Science Programs

In the 2018-2019 academic year, 77 schools offered some type of funeral and mortuary science program. 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) 16 5
Certificate (1-2 years) 19 7
Certificate (2-4 Years) 2 0
Associate’s Degree 68 10
Bachelor’s Degree 0 0
Post-Baccalaureate 16 5
Master’s Degree 0 0
Post-Master’s 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

Is a Degree in Funeral & Mortuary Science Worth It?

The median salary for a mortuary science grad is $57,620 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 44% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $354,400 after 20 years!

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to mortuary science.

Major Number of Grads
Cosmetology 103,674
Culinary Arts 26,675
Other Personal & Culinary Services 320

References

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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