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Negative perceptions of numerical degrees – fears of nine-to-five boredom

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Economics, Finance and Maths graduates in the UK face negative questions like “Don’t you just make the numbers up?” “Are you really going to do that for the rest of your life?” and “You just add up… how hard can that be?” according to a new study into the public’s perception of ‘numerical degrees’.

In visualised research conducted by financial broker Spread Co, graduates responded to the criticism of their degrees, highlighting their financial achievements, career progression, charity work and travelling opportunities. The research also discovered negative perceptions of Accounting and Management degrees, with additional comments like “You’re the traffic wardens of the finance world” and “You just sit on your arse all day doing sums” offending recent graduates. 

Their responses, however, portray a very different side of numerical graduates, illustrating that they are anything but “boring bean counters”. Shameer Sachdev, from Spread Co, commented, “There is for some reason an age-old perception that these sorts of degrees are boring, whereas in fact nothing could be further from the truth. “To work in the fast-paced and constantly evolving world of finance, you need a diverse skillset and the sort of intrinsic drive that these competitive degrees give you. 

“Whether it’s backpacking around the world or landing their dream job over thousands of other applicants, the graduates we surveyed are clearly interesting and dynamic individuals, which makes them perfect for our industry.”

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