Qualifications to become a full professor vary greatly depending on the type of educational institution at which the professor teaches, his subject or area of speciality, and what rank he is in terms of job title. The average salary of a full-time professor also depends on these factors, as well as how many years of experience he has in teaching.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that the median annual salary for professors was £38,239 as of May 2008 with a salary scale ranging from £18,765 to £79,202. The average salary for full-time postsecondary faculty was £51,635 with professors earning £70,686 on average, associate professors £49,495 and assistant professors £41,487.
Salary by Institution
Professors may teach at colleges, universities, vocational schools or community colleges. The BLS states that the average salary for a full-time professor in private independent institutions was £59,967 for the 2008-09 academic year. In public institutions the average was £50,055 and in private colleges and universities with religious affiliations the average was £46,707. The BLS also notes that institutions with "high-paying non-academic alternatives" such as medicine, law and engineering tend to offer salaries for professors that exceed these averages.
Language and Arts Professors
The average salary for professors who teach art, drama and music was £44,349 as of May 2009, according to the BLS. In colleges, universities and professional schools, the average was £44,856, while those teaching junior colleges earned an average of £44,668. Professors teaching foreign language and literature earned a salary average of £41,145, with those in colleges, universities and professional schools earning £41,119 on average, and those in junior colleges earning £45,955.
Science and Technical Professors
Professors who teach computer science earn an average income of £49,309, with those in colleges, universities and professional schools earning £54,697 on average, and those in junior colleges earning £42,698, according to the BLS. Mathematical science professors earn an average of £47,008 in colleges, universities and professional schools, £44,447 in junior colleges and £45,857 as a national average. Professors who teach chemistry courses earn an average salary of £50,277, with colleges, universities and professional schools offering an average salary of £51,896, and junior colleges offering less at £43,836.
Law and Medical Professors
Medical professors, or those who teach the biological sciences, earn an average salary of £56,693 a year, according to the BLS, with colleges, universities and professional schools paying a higher average than junior colleges at £59,436 versus £43,127 a year. Law professors earn some of the highest wages of all professors with a salary average of £70,947, although junior colleges offer a much lower average of £44,193, while in colleges, universities and professional schools the average is higher at £73,008.