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The Average Salary of Community College Professor With a Doctorate Degree

by Rick Suttle, studioD

Community colleges rely on professors with doctorate degrees to provide quality instruction to their students. Many of these colleges are smaller and enable professors to interact more closely with every student. Your responsibilities will include preparing lesson plans in accordance with course specifications and evaluating students' knowledge through testing. Community college professors with doctorate degrees earned salaries averaging just over $50,000 annually.

Salary and Qualifications

The average annual salary for a community college professor with a doctorate degree was $51,000 as of 2013, according to the job site Simply Hired. To work at a community college in this capacity, you need a Ph.D. or equivalent degree in your particular field, whether it's math, English or business. Many professors start as assistant professors and work their way up to professor after five or more years, for example. Other essential requirements for the job are leadership, instructional, communication, critical thinking and computer skills.

Regional Salaries

In 2013, average salaries for community college professors with doctorate degrees varied the most in the South region, according to Simply Hired, where they earned the lowest salaries of $40,000 in Louisiana and highest of $81,000 in Washington, D.C. Those in the Northeast made $51,000 to $62,000 per year in Maine and Massachusetts, respectively. If you were a community college professor with a doctorate degree in the West, you'd earn the most in Alaska or California and the least in Montana -- $58,000 or $41,000, respectively. In the Midwest, you'd make $40,000 to $54,000 annually, with the lowest salary in South Dakota and highest in Illinois and Minnesota.

Contributing Factors

Community college professors with doctorate degrees earn more in New York and Washington, D.C., because living and housing costs are typically higher in that state and district. For example, if you earned $50,000 for this job in Atlanta, you'd have to make $117,924 in New York City to maintain the same living standard, according to CNN Money's "Cost of Living" calculator. In Washington, D.C., you'd have to earn $75,434 to enjoy the same living standard as in Atlanta, or approximately 51 percent more. Community college professors with doctorate degrees can also earn more with experience, as most community colleges pay on gradation scales that are based on years of service.

Job Outlook

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 17 percent increase in employment for postsecondary teachers from 2010 to 2020, which is about average. Enrollment increases in colleges may increase jobs for postsecondary teachers, including community college professors with doctorate degrees. Job growth is usually contingent on the economy and local and state budgets. As the economy continues to improve, you may find more job opportunities in this field.

About the Author

Rick Suttle has been writing professionally since 2009, covering health and business for various online and print publications. He has worked in corporate marketing research and as a copywriter. Suttle holds a Bachelor of Science in marketing from Miami University and a Master of Business Administration from California Coast University. He is author of the novels "Hell Year" and "Suicide Peak."

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