Average teacher salary relative to other professions requiring a comparable level of qualification


SDG Indicator 4.c.5: The indicator is defined as the ratio of annual statutory teacher compensation for a teacher with typical qualifications and 15 years of experience (numerator) to the annual earnings of similarly qualified individuals (denominator).

Data source

Teacher salary data is collected through UIS country data collection while salaries of professional occupations are obtained from ILOSTAT and the ratio is calculated by the UIS. The exception is for countries which participate in the OECD’s Education at a Glance; in which case, the data is drawn from this report in the order preference described in the calculation method.

Source definition

UNESCO Institute for Statistics http://tcg.uis.unesco.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/4/2020/11/Metadata-4....

Calculation method

Numerator: The numerator is statutory salaries of teachers with 15 years of experience with typical qualifications where the preferred definition of typical qualifications is the level of qualifications and training held by the largest proportion of teachers. Denominator: The measure of earnings for individuals with a comparable level of qualification will depend on data available for each country, and the order preference is (1) the average earnings of tertiary educated workers weighted by teacher qualification, (2) the average earnings of tertiary educated workers, or (3) the average earnings of workers in professional occupations.

Data required

Information on the statutory salaries of teacher as well as on representative data on salaries of comparable workers.


A value above 1 would indicate that teachers have higher salaries relative to those of similarly qualified individuals while a value below 1 indicates lower salaries relative to those of similarly qualified individuals.


The limitation of the defined indicator is that it is not necessarily representative of teachers: the salaries of teachers at the mid-point of their career are chosen to reflect an average; however, the true average salaries may differ. In addition, generally only public school teachers are bound by the statutory teacher salary scales and may exclude private school teachers.


To provide a measure of the relative attractiveness and fairness of pay of the teaching profession compared to other professions requiring a similar level of qualification. The rationale is that if salaries in the teaching profession are attractive, it is more likely to attract quality candidates.

Types of disaggregation

By level of education.