AV-1 Survey Results (Part One): Salary and Education

Nicely Done! Over 200 people — better than 1/3 of all AV-1 members — responded to the second AV-1 survey (Salary and Education). Significant sample data such as these enable us to feel comfortable suggesting that some of these statistics fairly represent the learning space microcosm, as a whole. (We expect that you will let us know otherwise!)

Later this week, we’ll share some organizational demographics gleaned from your responses, however, today we cut right to the chase and show you the money, so-to-speak…

Highest Level of Education

Salary and Education

85% of the community possess some kind of college degree. Educational background, though not a guarantee of success or position, clearly contributes to income: 

  • On average, those with Bachelor’s degrees earned almost 8% more than those with 2-year degrees.
  • Those with a Master’s earned nearly 20% more than they would have with just a 4-year degree. 
  • The average salary of those with a terminal degree bested a Master’s by another 16%.
  • Does this speak to the professionalism of the group?  Does this help us convince people (including ourselves) that we are not just cart pushers?



Respondent's Role within Organization

Roles, Leadership and Salary

Nearly three-quarters of us occupy a formal position of leadership. However, by virtue of the inclusive, non-hierarchical nature of the AV-1 community, it is reasonable to infer that the remaining 28% participate in their organizations as well-informed specialists and change agents.

It is surprising that, although Directors commanded the highest salary, one-third of all Directors possessed only a 4-year degree and at least two Directors commanded a $100k+ salary with only a technical certificate to their credit.

With nearly half of us earning at least $65,000 on average, is this an indication that there is genuine growth potential for those of us who occupy positions in the lower salary range?  (Or, does it only make us envious of those 18 people making over $105,000?)



Funding Model

Salary Bands Across Business Sectors

In recent years, concerns over pay-scale inequity between similar roles in the public and private sectors have led many institutions to revise methodologies for assessing/rewarding competencies, encouraging professional development and recruiting/retaining a talented, diverse workforce.

Initiatives such as career banding were designed to offer the promise of fair-market wages to talented tech workers choosing between the public and private sectors.

To assess the extent of the wage-gap between the public and private sector, we compiled the average salaries for Directors and Managers with Master’s or Bachelor’s degrees.

  • Between private, non-profit organizations ($72,653) and publicly-funded institutions ($73,115) we found no statistical difference in average wage.
  • Between publicly-funded institutions and for-profit businesses, we found less than a 5% deviation in average wage.
  • Do these results seem representative of your observations in your region?
  • Would a broader sample from the for-profit sector reveal greater contrast?
  • Are there measures that your institution is implementing to close the gap?


by Scott Tiner
Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

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