Which Degree Is Best for Government Jobs? - Careers in Government (2023)

Government jobs are much sought after because they offer stability, benefits like insurance and retirement, and generally good pay. But, you may be wondering, how does one acquire a government job? Will I need a degree to get such a job?

If you’re entering college or going back to school mid-career, you are in a unique position to increase your chances of obtaining a government job. You can choose a degree path well-suited to government jobs. We’ll discuss types of government jobs and the best degrees to pursue.

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Getting a degree isn’t the only step. You’ll also need to learn how to make a good resume in order to show off your education and experience in the best way possible.

Types of Government Jobs

Government positions are available through the local (city and county), state, and federal governments. According to Indeed, they can be divided into the following categories:

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  • Law enforcement and security
  • Law (attorneys, judges, and paralegals)
  • Medicine
  • Social work
  • Education
  • Science and engineering
  • International relations and foreign language
  • Business
  • Technology
  • Administration

The Best Degrees for Government Jobs

Some types of government jobs listed above require highly specialized degrees. If you want to be a judge or attorney, for example, you’ll need a law degree. But there are also more generalized bachelors and graduate degrees that can help you qualify for many different positions. We’ll discuss each degree below.

Political Science

Political science is the common-sense choice for a career in government. Political science students study public policy, the mechanics and origins of political systems, government bodies, political theory, and political ideology. Graduate and undergraduate programs are available.

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Public Administration

Public administration may be the most in-demand degree when working with the state and federal government. This program will teach you “how to effect lasting change in politics and policies in all levels of government.” Courses of study include public policy, community analysis, financial administration, and public budgeting. Both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in public administration are available.

Public Policy

Like public administration, public policy degree holders are in demand at all levels of government. They are trained to analyze policies, evaluate programs, and interpret data.

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The government and the economy are closely linked. Economists are needed to do research on topics like interest rates, inflation, energy costs, and the distribution of goods and services. You can pursue an economics degree at the level of bachelor’s or master’s.

Business Administration

Forbes says “politics is big business in America” – making business administration a needed skill in government. This degree will “help you to learn how to arrange, direct and manage the objectives of an agency or department.” Courses of study include sociology, business policy, accounting, economics, and marketing. You can earn a business degree through an undergraduate or graduate program.

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Public Health

Healthcare is one of the fastest-growing fields in the economy at large; it is also “one of the fastest-growing areas for employment in the government sector.” Public health focuses on preventing illness in order “to reduce health care costs for society.”

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What degree is Best for working in government? ›

Public administration is often the go-to major if one wishes to pursue work in government. If you choose to get your bachelor's or master's in public administration, expect to tackle public budgeting, community analysis, public policy, and financial administration classes.

Which is the highest paid government job? ›

Top 10 Highest Paying Government Jobs in India after Graduation
  • IFS Officers.
  • State Public Service Commission.
  • Officer in Indian Railways.
  • LIC AAO.
  • RBI Jobs.
  • ISRO/DRDO Jobs.
  • ASO in External Ministry.
  • Professors.

What are the 5 jobs of government? ›

What are the common types of government jobs?
  • Administration. Administrative employees help with the day-to-day operations of the government. ...
  • Law enforcement. ...
  • Science and engineering. ...
  • Education, public health, and social services. ...
  • Commerce and technology. ...
  • International relations and linguistics.
Jun 29, 2021

Which government job is easier to get? ›

RRB Group D is the easiest central government job.

What are the easiest government jobs? ›

List of Easiest Government Exams to Crack in India
  • RRB Group D.
  • SSC Multi Tasking staff.
  • IBPS Cerk Exam.
  • SSC Stenographer.
  • IBPS Specialist Officer Exams.
  • Central Teachers Eligibility Test (CTET)

Which government job is hardest? ›

You all have heard that UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) is one of India's toughest exams. The UPSC Civil Services Exam, considered among the most prestigious in the country, is held to choose candidates for top administrative jobs in the Central Government of India.

What is the lowest salary in government job? ›

Average starting Salary for Government job in India is around ₹0.2 Lakh per year (₹1.7k per month). 1 year of minimum experience is required to be a Government job. What is the highest salary for a Government job in India? Highest salary that a Government job can earn is ₹10.6 Lakhs per year (₹88.3k per month).

What is the lowest government salary? ›

The federal minimum wage for covered nonexempt employees is $7.25 per hour.

What is the best position in government? ›

15 best-paying government jobs
  • Compliance officer.
  • Civil engineer.
  • Auditor.
  • Mechanical engineer.
  • Mathematician.
  • Political affairs officer.
  • Certified registered nurse anesthetist.
  • Physician.
Feb 15, 2021

Is it hard to get a federal job? ›

Candidates for positions with the federal government often face a more intensive hiring process than that of many private employers. Learning how to apply for federal government jobs can help you find work with the United States government.

What position in government is for life? ›

United States federal judges have life tenure once appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate. In some cases, life tenure lasts only until a mandatory retirement age.

How do I get a job with the federal government? ›

General Federal Government Recruitment Requirements 2022
  1. A B.SC or equivalent certificate from an accredited Tertiary Institution.
  2. WAEC or NECO SSCE Certificate with a minimum of 5 Credits.
  3. A Valid National Identification card or Driver's License.
  4. Birth Certificate or Declaration of age document.
Jul 29, 2022

How do I start preparing for government jobs? ›

Let's discuss some important points to be kept in mind related to the upcoming government exam preparation.
  1. Know about the exam pattern and syllabus in detail.
  2. Attempt Daily Quizzes to Practice.
  3. Set a timetable and study Daily.
  4. Mock Tests to Your Rescue.
  5. Analyze your performance & Maintain accuracy.

What is the lowest grade in government jobs? ›

The General Schedule has 15 grades--GS-1 (lowest) to GS-15 (highest). Agencies establish (classify) the grade of each job based on the level of difficulty, responsibility, and qualifications required.

Which government job is easy for female? ›


Various positions under UPSC are available for women. Along with a good salary, these jobs carry along with other government job benefits. Also, various civil services jobs under UPSC like IAS, IFS, IPS are not just the most sought after but also the most well-paid and reputed ones.

Which govt job is peaceful? ›

Some UPSC jobs are also less stressful, e.g. Indian Revenue Service (IRS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS) - at least as compared to IAS and IPS.

Is government a good career? ›

Government jobs tend to be stable and offer excellent benefits. Unfortunately, salary and earnings are often capped for government workers regardless of how well you perform. Federal jobs often require security clearance, and this process can take several months up to a year.

What is the #1 hardest job in the world? ›

Top 30 Hardest Jobs In The World
  1. Military. Coming first on our list of the hardest jobs in the world is the military.
  2. Healthcare Worker. There is just no rest for a health worker once the shift begins. ...
  3. Alaskan Crab Fisherman. ...
  4. Iron and Steel Worker. ...
  5. Roofer. ...
  6. Cell Tower Climber. ...
  7. Firefighter. ...
  8. Oil Rig Worker. ...
Sep 6, 2022

Which government job has only one exam? ›

The single exam system has been implemented in various government jobs like clerical jobs, engineering jobs, medical jobs, etc. The sites like Drona.in, Byjus, Jagranjosh.com, Adda247.com, and Prepp.in are valuable sources for getting access to relevant information on the government jobs with a single exam.

Why government jobs are the best? ›

Government jobs offer better opportunities for career growth. This is because the government sector is much larger than the private sector. As a result, there are more positions available for advancement. In addition, the government sector also provides employees with more training and development opportunities.

What is grade pay in government jobs? ›

Level in your career path: A grade pay is also based on what level you are at in your career path. For instance, grade pay for 0-2 years of candidates will be different than that of 3-5 years. Field: No matter what area you are in, there is a natural progression to management and senior roles.

What is government job order salary? ›

Under section 9.0 of the said circular order, Individuals hired through job orders shall be paid wages equivalent to the daily wage/ salary of comparable positions in government and a premium of up to 20% of such wage/ salary.

How many hours is part time? ›

Part-time work means a person works a set number of hours each week, which can range from a few to around 30 hours.

How much does a government job pay in the US? ›

The average U.S. Government salary ranges from approximately $39,899 per year for Control Officer to $179,885 per year for Director of Finance. Average U.S. Government hourly pay ranges from approximately $13.50 per hour for Forklift Operator to $36.77 per hour for Entry Level Mechanic.

What state pays the highest minimum wage? ›

As of January 1, 2023, the District of Columbia had the highest minimum wage in the U.S., at 16.50 U.S. dollars per hour. This was followed by Washington, which had 15.74 U.S. dollars per hour as the state minimum wage.

Are government jobs stressful? ›

Ans: As previously stated, the government sector has standard working hours. As a result, these working hours will result in less work stress. Government jobs offer the best time frame for completing work on time and in the best possible manner, which is not possible in the private sector.

Is it worth it to work for the federal government? ›

Some of the most significant advantages of working for the federal government include job security, high compensation increases, more vacation and holidays, good health benefits, and generous retirement benefits.

How much vacation do federal employees get? ›

0-3 years of federal service3-15 years of federal service15+ years of federal service
13 days of vacation leave/year20 days of vacation leave/year26 days of vacation leave/year
13 days of sick leave/year13 days of sick leave/year13 days of sick leave/year
Jan 27, 2022

How can I increase my chances of getting a federal job? ›

10 Ways to Improve Your Chances of Getting a Federal Job
  1. Write Your Resume to the Specific Job Listing. ...
  2. Everyone in the Federal Government is an Expert. ...
  3. Eliminate Warning Flags. ...
  4. On the Interview Process. ...
  5. Answer the Question Asked. ...
  6. Show You Want the Job. ...
  7. Be Ready to Ask Your Own Questions. ...
  8. Don't Forget to Say Thank You.
May 18, 2018

What are the 4 jobs of government? ›

A government is responsible for creating and enforcing the rules of a society, defense, foreign affairs, the economy, and public services.

Is it smart to work for the government? ›

Government jobs often come with good benefits

One of the biggest advantages of government jobs is the benefits package. Most government positions come with health insurance, paid vacation days, and retirement savings plans. This can save employees a lot of money and stress in the long run.

What are the three positions in government? ›

Legislative—Makes laws (Congress, comprised of the House of Representatives and Senate) Executive—Carries out laws (president, vice president, Cabinet, most federal agencies) Judicial—Evaluates laws (Supreme Court and other courts)

Do government jobs pay well? ›

Government jobs tend to be stable and offer excellent benefits. Unfortunately, salary and earnings are often capped for government workers regardless of how well you perform.

How do I start working for the government? ›

You must create a USAJOBS profile to apply.
  1. USAJOBS requires users to have a login.gov account. ...
  2. Sign into USAJOBS, create your profile, and upload your resume.
  3. Search for jobs that interest you.
  4. Review the job announcements to see if you qualify.
  5. Prepare your application in USAJOBS.

Is it difficult to get a government job? ›

Many people believe applying for a federal job is a difficult and complicated process, but it is actually very achievable. The search process for federal government jobs can last about 6-18 months, which can be lengthy for many people.

What is the lowest paying job in the federal government? ›

Lowest Paid 100 Federal Occupations in 2016
RankOccupation TitleLowest Paid Individual
1Sales Store Clerk$16,153
2Miscellaneous Food Preparer and Server$25,336
3Agricultural Commodity Aid$22,419
4Miscellaneous Personal Services$26,734
96 more rows

What qualifications do I need to work in local government? ›

Some local authorities may ask for at least 4 GCSEs, A levels, or equivalent qualifications, depending on the vacancy. For certain jobs, you may need a degree or specific professional qualification in an area like town planning or public policy.

What skills do you need to work in government? ›

What Skills Do You Need for Public Services and Administration?
  • Communication. ...
  • Influence. ...
  • Respect for Hierarchy. ...
  • Resilience. ...
  • Ability to Work Collaboratively. ...
  • Leadership. ...
  • Empathy. ...
  • Honesty.

How do I start studying for government jobs? ›

Let's discuss some important points to be kept in mind related to the upcoming government exam preparation.
  1. Know about the exam pattern and syllabus in detail.
  2. Attempt Daily Quizzes to Practice.
  3. Set a timetable and study Daily.
  4. Mock Tests to Your Rescue.
  5. Analyze your performance & Maintain accuracy.


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