Top 20 Master’s Degree Programs Online with Highest Salaries in the USA (2024)


I understand that pursuing a Master’s degree can be a big decision, and it’s important to ensure that your time and money investment will be worth it. That’s why I’m here to help you find the Master’s Degree Programs Online with the Highest Salaries in the USA for 2024.

There are many reasons why you might be considering a master’s degree, whether it’s to gain expertise in your current field, explore a new career path, or advance your current career into management and leadership. Whatever your reason, I want to help you find a degree program to help you achieve your goals.


One great way to find the best investment is by looking for an accessible and flexible online master’s program in a high-paying career field. This allows you to balance your professional experience with educational training, which can be incredibly valuable in advancing your career.

To help you find the highest-paying online master’s programs for 2024, I’ve done some research. I looked at the Bureau of Labor Statistics to identify the highest-paying careers and their typical entry-level education. Then, I ranked career-specific online master’s programs based on the most current median salaries recorded by PayScale. This information will be helpful to you in making your decision.

Top 20 Master's Degree Programs Online with Highest Salaries in the USA

#20 – Online Masters in Education Leadership

Teachers or educators who would like to become chiefs or leaders of their schools could greatly benefit from earning their own online Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership. This highly-paying online master’s degree enables the students to instruct and train while completing their course. The subjects of study are:

  • Family, school and community connections, human resources and finance in schools, and critical issues in education leadership.
  • School administration personnel, data-driven decision-making educational leadership.
  • Law for public schools and the school principalship.

Students will graduate with a better understanding and comprehension of how to create programs, encourage collaboration, solve problems, communicate with parents and community members, analyze test results and manage issues, and teach and coach other teachers. One of the jobs this degree prepares students to pursue is as an elementary school principal who, as per PayScale, earns an average of $86,233. This job is accountable for ensuring the safety and supervision of school staff and students, directing the school’s operations, and ensuring safety is maintained.

Average Salary:

  • Elementary School Principal – $86,233
  • College Administrator – $61,829

#19 – Online Masters in Aerospace Engineering

Engineers develop, design, research, test and manufacture an array of diverse kinds of items. Engineering professionals interested in aircraft spacecraft, spacecraft, and other related equipment who wish to progress in their careers are advised to pursue one of the in-person Masters in Aerospace Engineering.

The highly-paying online master’s degree is entirely online, which allows students to pursue their work and gain experience while they complete their coursework. The study topics are fluid mechanics, solid mechanics mat,erial dynamics, and control and aerodynamics—aerospace systems, Astrodynamics, space applications, structures and materials, and propulsion.

Additional specializations include orbital mechanics, aerospace control and spacecraft. Students will significantly improve their understanding and knowledge of all the aerospace engineers need to know to succeed. This consists of the intricate details involved in the design of everything connected to flight and the creation of products, their approval, testing and production of products. According to PayScale Aerospace Engineers, the national average pay for an aerospace engineer is $86,913.

Average Salary:

  • Aerospace Engineers – $86,913

#18 – Online Masters in Healthcare Administration

Healthcare is a huge employer with numerous highly sought-after jobs that will continue to grow with opportunities. One of the most lucrative master’s degrees offered online is this online master’s degree in healthcare administration.
This degree will aid healthcare professionals in increasing their skills and knowledge to take on managerial posts.
Students will learn about topics like the economy, health in general and diversity, communication, strategic planning and biostatistics, health quality and improvement policies and laws affecting health, reimbursement, and healthcare finance.
The training will enhance students’ understanding of financial information, management tasks, human resources, healthcare operations and the environment, information management systems, and organisational development to create high-quality, efficient processes and improve the health facility.
According to PayScale, a hospital administrator who manages all the operations at a medical facility receives an average income of $88,266, while a Health Administrator is responsible for the entire operations of any healthcare facility they manage and has an average wage of $74,392.

Average Salary:

  • Hospital Administrator – $88,266
  • Healthcare Administrator – $74,3923

#17 – Online Masters of Nuclear Engineering

The ideal option is for those who have earned a bachelor’s degree and are looking to pursue nuclear engineering. The degree is offered online. Master of Nuclear Engineering is a lucrative master’s degree online.

The Nuclear Engineer develops reactivity plans that assess risks, forecast the effects of nuclear techniques, test them and evaluate their performance. They also apply nuclear reactor technology and perform intricate model interactions to effectively complete nuclear engineering tasks within an organization.

Courses like radiation shielding and safety, the cycle of nuclear fuel and radioactive waste management and design principles for the reactor system, statistics thermodynamics, and power plant simulator will help graduates get into this highly-paid occupation.

In addition to the advanced skills imparted in these courses, students will be taught the importance of observing security laws. PayScale reports that the median salary of Nuclear Engineers is $89,040. This proves to be a highly-paying Master’s online degree. They can work for various companies, including laboratories, electric utility companies, and nuclear power plants.

Average Salary:

  • Nuclear Engineer – $89,040

#16 – Online Masters in Chemistry

We will always be watching as we study, research and explore the nature and properties of materials. Professionals who wish to expand their skills, knowledge and possibilities within the realm of Chemistry should consider pursuing an online Master’s Degree in Chemistry. The flexible, highly-paying master’s degree online is accessible with a full-time job where the student controls how fast and when they progress through their coursework.
Students will be studying advanced analytical chemical chemistry and organic chemistry mass spectrometry, NMR spectroscopy, physical chemistry, inorganic chemistry, advanced biochemistry, polymer and industrial chemistry—the fundamentals of heterocycles and a particular focus on molecular models, pharmaceuticals and medicinal chemical research. Graduates may pursue a career as a Materials scientist.
According to PayScale, Materials Scientist earns an average pay of $90,804. Materials Scientists Materials Scientists work, often in laboratories, to determine the properties of materials, study and analyze the properties of chemicals, and provide solutions for improving and maintaining the quality of the products.

Average Salary:

  • Materials Scientist – $90,804

#15 – Online Masters in Physician Assistant Studies

One of the most lucrative Master’s degree programs online in healthcare is a Master’s degree of Science in Physician Assistant Study. Physician Assistants are licensed and can perform many essential tasks doctors perform to treat illness and injuries, conduct physicals and checks, prescribe or interpret medical tests, advise and counsel patients, prescribe medication, and carry out routine, fundamental procedures.

PayScale estimates that the median national amount for Physician Assistants is $100,803. Physician assistant of $100,803. The Master’s degree that pays top-paying salaries online connects every organ system, including the reproductive, dermatology, cardiovascular and endocrine.

This degree integrates every topic studied to offer a unified education. The study topics are human anatomy and diagnostic research, preventive and behavioural medicine, fundamental analysis, patient assessment, clinical medicine, and pharmaceutical science.

Combining online courses and in-person clinical experiences, the blended degree equips students with the knowledge and abilities needed to become a physician assistant and the management, administration, and education capabilities required to excel in their professional careers.

Average Salary:

  • Physician Assistant – $100,803

#14 – Online Masters in Nonprofit Management

Nonprofit organizations help communities by offering not-for-profit foundations, religious institutions, support groups, and charitable organizations. A master’s degree online in Nonprofit Management will produce the competent leaders required to manage these institutions.

The highly-paying online master’s degree will help you develop and strengthen your abilities in strategic planning programs and team building, leadership, marketing, fundraising, managing human resources and entrepreneurial skills related to nonprofits.

Courses can focus on the nonprofit sector and social business, grant writing in nonprofit organizations, and managing resources and finances. Thanks to the flexibility of an online classroom, this degree may take less than two years to complete.

Payscale’s salary average states that an average chief operating officer of a nonprofit earns $109,829 while an executive director of a nonprofit earns $68,803.

A COO nonprofit is an experienced professional at the highest level who, through directing teams, establishing goals, and defining projects, is accountable for leading the organization’s policies, operations, and procedures. A COO, a Nonprofit Executive Director Nonprofit, supervises the finances and fundraising for the organization.

Average Salary:

  • COO, Non-profit – $109,829
  • Executive Director, Non-Profit – $68,803

#13 – Online Masters in Petroleum Engineering

Another master’s degree that is highly lucrative online in the engineering field can be found in the online Masters in Petroleum Engineering. Many of our products are made from petroleum, fulfilling our energy demands.

Therefore, these engineers are highly sought-after and highly relied on. The courses cover reservoir engineering, the design and development of reservoirs for oil and gas, drilling and logging, and petroleum production operations tests for pressure transients horizontal drilling, the properties of petroleum fluids and phase equilibrium.

Students are taught how to use the development, discovery and extraction of natural resources like gas, oil and water to meet the energy requirements. The online option allows students to continue gaining valuable experiences while earning their qualifications.

PayScale claims that Petroleum Engineers make the average wage in the United States of $101,290. They oversee the design and testing of the procedures, methods and equipment used to securely drill, collect oil, and recover natural gas to produce.

Average Salary:

  • Petroleum Engineers – $101,290

#12 – Online Masters in Aeronautics

One of the most lucrative online master’s degrees within the aviation industry includes that of the in-person Masters in Aeronautics. The flexible online degree is an excellent option for a new student or a professional in aviation to enhance their skills, knowledge and job opportunities.

Thanks to the latest technological advances, such as gaming technology, students can get hands-on experiences with specific projects online just as if they were in the real world. Through the course, students can gain advanced knowledge of every aspect of aviation and industry related to aircraft transportation.

Some of the areas of study include the aviation transportation system, the statistical analysis of aviation, research methods for aerospace, and human factors in the aerospace and aviation sector. According to PayScale, it is estimated that airline pilots, copilots, or flight engineers earn an average salary of $116.570.

A pilot in an airline is accountable for the performance of crew members and the flight. A copilot aids the pilot with these duties, and an engineer oversees the processes and controls.

Average Salary:

  • Airline Pilot, Copilot, or Flight Engineer – $116,570

#11 – Online Masters in Cybersecurity

Since companies run on computers, protecting your business is crucial to prevent intruders from gaining access to important data. This is the reason why it is essential to have an internet-based Master’s in Cybersecurity, which is an online master’s degree that pays high wages. 
The curriculum, based on the student’s previous knowledge and experiences of IT or engineering, includes courses in information security, security systems management, Cyber threat intelligence, the basics for computer network security, and cyber warfare.
While all courses are online, students receive experience in the field to learn how to analyze and plan, organize to prevent, manage, and ensure the security of computers and networks within a company. The degree prepares students for various career paths.
Information Security Managers The Information Security Manager designs strategies, detects and solves problems, is responsible for the security policy, as per PayScale, and earns an average salary of $120,000. Cyber Security Analysts A cyber security analyst is accountable for analyzing and observing data and resolving security concerns. According to PayScale’s data, he earns an average of $75,908.

Average Salary:

  • Information Security Manager – $120,007
  • Cyber Security Analyst – $77,311

#10 – Online Masters in Risk Management and Insurance

Another of the top earning master’s degrees online includes the Master’s online degree in Risk Management and Insurance. Ineffectively managing risk can hurt a company. In this course students will be taught to recognize the signs, analyze, judge the impact of risk, manage and monitor risks using various types and types of policies.

This comprehensive education will aid students in analyzing financial data and conducting analysis, understanding global trends, looking at the market for money, and interpreting and analyzing insurance policies.

The program includes classes including financial markets, quantitative techniques such as health and life insurance and risk management for insurance, the operation of an insurance company, and the management of property and liability risk and insurance.

Students can pursue the lucrative career of a director in Risk Management, which, according to PayScale, has a mean national pay of $124,632. This is a crucial position for any company as they are accountable for ensuring the business complies with all laws and auditing every aspect of their business.

Average Salary:

  • Director, Risk Management – $124,632

#9 – Online Masters of Finance

The need for the management of finances is excellent and ongoing. This is a good career for future job security. One of the highest-paying online Master’s degrees is the online Master’s in Finance. It takes the student’s current knowledge, education, and experience and maximizes their analytical skills and understanding of how to manage the financial marketplace.

Topics of study include financial modelling and accounting, capital structure and cost, multinational financial management, quantitative methods, analysis of financial markets, mergers and acquisitions, and portfolio management. The flexibility of this high-paying online Master’s degree allows students to work full-time and gain experience while earning this extensive, valuable education.

PayScale states that the national average salary for a chief financial officer is $141,243, and for a finance director, it is $116,670. A CFO is responsible for all of an organization’s financial operations. A Finance Director, through accounting, analysis, and projections, leads a team to create and execute the organization’s financial plan.

Average Salary:

  • CFO – $141,243
  • Finance Director – $116,670
  • Senior Actuarial Analyst – $83,493

#8 – Online Masters of Business Administration

There are various possible career paths available with a degree in business, and having an online Master’s Degree in Business Administration gives students a competitive edge when trying to get that lucrative job.

As one of the top-paying master’s degrees online, students will acquire a better knowledge of the basics of business, the technical aspects, and the strategies to manage and direct a company. Most often, the classes are taught by experienced instructors.

This demanding and rewarding education is available between 18 and 36 months. Coursework covers subjects like leadership, communication, finance, business strategy, entrepreneurship and marketing, and the option of concentrating on specific areas.

The Chief of Operations, the second highest in the hierarchy, is accountable for efficiently implementing the operations within an organization. According to PayScale’s data, the average salary in the United States is $144,446. Senior Professional Service Consultant is a Senior Professional Services Consultant who assists and trains clients to ensure their understanding regarding the products is up-to-date, according to PayScale, with an annual average of $97,893.

Average Salary:

  • COO – $144,446
  • Senior Professional Service Consultant – $97,893
  • Regional Sales Manager – $80,134
  • Operations Manager – $63,502

#7 – Online Masters of Engineering

Engineers typically produce the breakthroughs we see in the present. With an array of engineering careers and fields, the online Master’s degree in Engineering could help expand the range of career options. Because it is one of the most lucrative Master’s degrees online, graduates could be promoted to senior Engineering Managers or even Director of Engineering.

This online, flexible degree is designed for engineers who want to grow their careers by enhancing their training, knowledge qualifications, and technical and practical engineering abilities. The program can take 1 to 2 months to finish, which includes management basics, business fundamentals of leadership, specific engineering classes and a co-consulting project.

PayScale says the average national pay for a senior Engineering manager is $151,483. The average salary for a director in Engineering can be found at $148.757. Both are responsible for directing engineers and their crews. This degree is believed to be the most lucrative Master’s degree online in the engineering field.

Average Salary:

  • Senior Engineering Manager – $151,483
  • Director of Engineering – $148,757
  • Optical Engineer – $87,622
  • Sales Engineer – $71,525

#6 – Online Masters in Human Resources

Suppose you’re looking to advance your human and human resources career. In that case, you should consider that an online Master’s degree in Human Resources could give you an edge to compete. This highly lucrative online master’s degree teaches students how to manage and develop employees effectively.

Through the study of topics including effective organizational structures and talent development, the fundamentals of writing and research, human resource management in a globalized world, strategic labor relations and maximizing human capital, students are taught how to be successful as leaders, manage their performance and train employees, solve conflicts, and devise strategies for maximizing productivity.

According to PayScale, a Chief Human Resource Officer earns an average national salary of $151,649, and a Manager’s salary for Compensation & Benefits is $88,097. The Chief Human Ressources Officer is responsible for all aspects of the human resource department of an organization, such as hiring, training, and keeping employees. The position of a manager, Compensation & Benefits is a part of the human resource department, which is responsible for the pay and benefits of the employees.

Average Salary:

  • Chief Human Resources Officer – $151,649
  • Manager, Compensation & Benefits – $88,097
  • Training Manager – $66,731
  • Human Resources Manager – $65,070

#5 – Online Executive Masters of Business Administration (EMBA)

Business professionals with several years of managerial or senior-level experience in leadership should take up the online executive Master’s in Business Administration. It is the most lucrative Master’s degree that can be obtained online and will be the path to becoming an Executive Director.

The CEO is the highest-paid executive decision-maker responsible for the company and its top-ranked employees. PayScale calculates that a Chief Executive Officer’s median national pay is $156,000. An online EMBA will build upon a student’s business insight and experience to build higher-level skills and knowledge.

From the perspective of executives, classes focus on subjects like financial accounting and management, applied economics, communication, and entrepreneurship, as well as organizational behaviour and marketing strategy and navigating the business environment. The benefit of this highly-paying Master’s online degree is that it could finish in as little as 18 months while working full-time.

Average Salary:

  • CEO – $156,000

#4 – Online Master’s in Supply Chain Management

The success of any business depends on the capacity to manage the flow of products and services effectively. This Online Master’s in Supply Chain Management will help students better understand the principles of developing and implementing strategies for supply chains and their operations as one of the top-paying master’s degrees offered online that prepares students to be successful in various job opportunities.

An executive vice president of Supply Chain Management manages, supervises, solves problems, creates strategies, and plans the critical aspects of the supply chain approach to ensure maximum profit. Industrial production managers are responsible for the effectiveness and compliance of the inventory products, inventory, and worker security in a factory.

PayScale reports that the average national pay for the position of a Vice President in Supply Chain Management is $169,373, while the average for the average salary for an Industrial Production Manager is $69,832. Students can get this lucrative distance-learning degree online or in blended formats. Some of the studied subjects include logistics and the global supply chain and strategic sourcing, applied analytical data processing, production planning and control, and distribution fulfilment.

Average Salary:

  • VP, Supply Chain Management – $169,373
  • Industrial Production Manager – $69,832
  • Purchasing Manager – $65,175

#3 – Online Masters in Information Technology

Another of the most lucrative Master’s degrees online is the online Master’s degree in Information Technology. In our ever-growing, technology-evolving, information-overloaded world, there is a great need for experts in this field. This degree enhances skills and expands knowledge. It also improves and strengthens analytical, problem-solving, and organizational and technical skills that enable students to compete for higher-level IT positions.

The courses of study cover advanced information security, information analysis and modelling, the fundamentals of information technology and computer systems and the development of software for technology in information and computer architecture and information security. This level of education can lead to lucrative jobs at the top of the ladder, like CTO and CIO.

Although both are executive-level positions and have responsibilities alike, a CTO is a job in which the CTO is focused on growth outside the organization and the CIO concentrates on the inner infrastructures of the company. The median salary for the nation, as per PayScale for CTOs, is $166,460. CTO is $166,460. The average salary for a CIO is $170,265, proving that this is among the most lucrative Master’s degrees online.

Average Salary:

  • CTO – $166,460
  • CIO – $170,265
  • Computer and Information Scientist, Research – $110,231
  • Computer Systems Architect – $98,500

#2 – Online Masters in Nursing

Nurses are a demanding but rewarding job, and the healthcare industry would not function without nurses. Another highly-paying online master’s program to pursue is the online master’s in nursing. Since nurses are focused on providing the highest quality of care to injured and sick people, the degree can help graduates successfully develop their careers. One field of study is Nursing Midwifery.

This program builds on the training in nursing that nurses have already completed and offers advanced nursing programs, along with a focus on the well-being and health of women, which includes prenatal, gynaecological, and postnatal treatment. Students complete their first year entirely online. The second year is completed on campus and has the clinical component.

The course covers the development of science, study design, nursing statistics and evidence-based practice, as well as the health of a population in a globalized society and professional transitions to Advanced nursing practices. According to PayScale, the Nurse Midwife earns an average median salary in the United States of $92,581.

Average Salary:

  • Nurse Anesthetists – $167,698
  • Nurse Practitioner – $101,424
  • Nurse Midwife – $98,023

#1 – Online Masters in Marketing

Marketing is the area of business wholly focused on the customer; it’s a crucial aspect for any company. This is why pursuing an online Master’s degree in Marketing is among the highest-paying master’s degrees you can earn online. It aids in developing and enhancing leadership, critical thinking, creative thinking, decision-making, time management, and public relations capabilities among students.

Students complete courses covering internet marketing and E-commerce, sales and marketing research, product development, the psychology behind consumer behaviour, global marketing strategies, and advanced analytical techniques. This flexible online degree prepares students for many lucrative jobs, such as chief marketing officer and senior marketing manager.

A CMO is a higher-level job responsible for executing the vision of marketing, direction and performance for the entire organization. The position of a senior Marketing Manager is a middle-level role that conducts research formulates designs, and creates marketing strategies. PayScale says the median national pay for a Chief Marketing Officer is $176,113. An Executive Marketing Manager earns $101,370.

Average Salary:

  • Chief Marketing Officer – $176,113
  • Senior Marketing Manager – $101,370
  • Director, Marketing and Communications – $82,345
  • Marketing Managers – $63,550
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