Least educated counties in Texas

Written by:
May 14, 2022
Matthew Rutledge // Wikimedia Commons

Least educated counties in Texas

The value of traditional education can vary widely across the country. While a college degree has long been viewed as a critical step toward the American dream, growing costs have led many students to reconsider the return-on-investment of higher education. Meanwhile, local economies and individual circumstances can push others toward learning a trade or entering the workforce early.

These considerations aside, national statistics show a clear difference in earnings as they relate to educational attainment, as college graduates typically earn 65% more than those with only a high school degree.

To help understand areas with the lowest educational attainment, Stacker compiled a list of the least educated counties in Texas using data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Counties are ranked by the lowest percent of the population 25 years and over that has a Bachelor’s degree or higher. Ties are broken by the highest percent with less than high school diploma.

Keep read on for a look at the least-educated counties in Texas.

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Liveon001 // Wikimedia Commons

#50. Jack County

- 13.5% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 17.9% ($22,254 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 40% ($31,416)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 28.6% ($44,297)
- Bachelor's degree: 8.8% ($61,818)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.7% ($68,958)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#49. Tyler County

- 13.4% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 18% ($31,075 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 43% ($26,203)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 25.6% ($36,656)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.8% ($50,250)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.6% ($48,621)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#48. Jim Hogg County

- 13.4% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 25.4% ($12,047 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 37.6% ($18,764)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 23.4% ($36,806)
- Bachelor's degree: 10.6% ($47,406)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.8%

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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#47. Crosby County

- 13.2% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 24% ($19,500 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 35.9% ($25,185)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 27% ($31,173)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.9% ($44,107)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.3% ($59,375)

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Jim Evans // Wikimedia Commons

#46. Polk County

- 13.1% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 18.3% ($23,071 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 39.5% ($32,370)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 29.1% ($31,685)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.4% ($47,867)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.8% ($50,328)

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ProfReader // Wikimedia Commons

#45. Gonzales County

- 13.1% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 23.3% ($26,377 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 44.1% ($33,064)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 19.5% ($35,954)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.5% ($50,478)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.6% ($54,531)

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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#44. Concho County

- 13% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 32.1%
- High school graduate: 30.8% ($22,727)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 24% ($26,500)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.7% ($48,750)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.3% ($57,813)

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Wrbalusek // Wikimedia Commons

#43. Jasper County

- 12.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 15% ($9,488 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 44.7% ($31,434)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 27.3% ($40,136)
- Bachelor's degree: 8.2% ($42,465)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.7% ($54,038)

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Jpo tx113 // Wikimedia Commons

#42. Trinity County

- 12.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 16.9% ($23,490 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 35.9% ($31,305)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 34.3% ($31,277)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.4% ($43,500)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.5% ($64,432)

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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#41. Yoakum County

- 12.7% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 36.5% ($36,614 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 26.2% ($54,400)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 24.6% ($48,750)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.9% ($49,564)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.8% ($58,064)

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JERRYE & ROY KLOTZ M.D. // Wikimedia Commons

#40. Maverick County

- 12.7% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 40.5% ($17,289 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 22.6% ($26,192)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 24.2% ($29,843)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.9% ($46,523)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.8% ($51,375)

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Renelibrary // Wikimedia Commons

#39. DeWitt County

- 12.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 19.2% ($26,643 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 39.1% ($31,313)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 29.1% ($36,630)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.2% ($52,853)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.4% ($54,107)

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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#38. Howard County

- 12.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 20% ($26,115 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 33.7% ($25,738)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 33.7% ($33,731)
- Bachelor's degree: 8.5% ($50,321)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.1% ($57,467)

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Michael Barera // Wikimedia Commons

#37. Red River County

- 12.5% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 14.7% ($16,492 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 40.4% ($26,776)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 32.6% ($28,882)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.6% ($43,000)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.9% ($51,389)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#36. Ward County

- 12.5% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 21.4% ($30,521 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 36.2% ($40,621)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 29.9% ($45,795)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.2% ($50,071)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.3% ($51,034)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#35. Falls County

- 12.4% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 23.1% ($22,165 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 38.4% ($25,733)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 26% ($33,910)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.8% ($45,875)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.6% ($59,167)

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Talshiarr // Wikimedia Commons

#34. Reeves County

- 12.3% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 30.3% ($17,318 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 32.7% ($31,505)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 24.8% ($40,387)
- Bachelor's degree: 8.7% ($45,893)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.6% ($51,716)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#33. Live Oak County

- 12.2% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 23.1% ($21,495 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 34.1% ($37,792)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 30.6% ($43,513)
- Bachelor's degree: 8.5% ($53,710)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.7% ($55,245)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#32. Jim Wells County

- 12.2% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 25.1% ($20,506 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 36.6% ($31,865)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 26.1% ($28,062)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.4% ($49,813)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.8% ($56,303)

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Nicolas Henderson from Coppell, Texas // Wikimedia Commons

#31. Andrews County

- 12.2% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 27.8% ($44,454 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 34.9% ($40,089)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 25.1% ($52,716)
- Bachelor's degree: 7.6% ($60,833)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.6% ($62,351)

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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#30. Kinney County

- 12.1% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 21.5% ($11,069 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 36.8% ($41,068)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 29.7% ($40,457)
- Bachelor's degree: 6.6%
- Graduate or professional degree: 5.5% ($81,239)

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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#29. Deaf Smith County

- 12% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 26.2% ($27,872 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 36.6% ($37,845)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 25.3% ($36,838)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.3% ($43,425)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.7% ($64,630)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#28. Haskell County

- 11.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 29.7% ($23,750 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 35.1% ($29,479)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 23.4% ($23,438)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.2% ($49,483)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.7% ($37,321)

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Leaflet // Wikimedia Commons

#27. Jones County

- 11.7% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 21.6% ($16,771 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 38.6% ($26,505)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 28% ($31,837)
- Bachelor's degree: 9.1% ($45,675)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.6% ($51,723)

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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#26. Zapata County

- 11.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 38.1% ($11,732 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 30.8% ($31,581)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 19.5% ($31,860)
- Bachelor's degree: 10.4% ($58,908)
- Graduate or professional degree: 1.2%

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Refugio County

- 11.5% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 19.7% ($20,625 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 38.4% ($26,196)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 30.3% ($37,321)
- Bachelor's degree: 8.1% ($54,728)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.4% ($47,083)

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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#24. Terry County

- 11.4% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 31.6% ($21,065 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 31.7% ($27,683)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 25.3% ($39,891)
- Bachelor's degree: 8.4% ($53,589)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3% ($28,844)

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Carol M. Highsmith // Wikimedia Commons

#23. Gaines County

- 11.4% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 38.2% ($33,379 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 29.8% ($31,813)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 20.5% ($35,388)
- Bachelor's degree: 8.2% ($51,004)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.2% ($47,961)

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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#22. Mitchell County

- 11.3% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 21.3% ($22,159 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 40.3% ($39,750)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 27.1% ($37,990)
- Bachelor's degree: 8.5% ($38,152)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.8% ($45,865)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#21. San Jacinto County

- 11.2% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 15.5% ($26,426 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 48% ($30,449)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 25.3% ($36,592)
- Bachelor's degree: 7.5% ($44,063)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.7% ($82,993)

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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#20. Zavala County

- 10.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 33.1% ($12,863 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 32.7% ($25,639)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 23.3% ($28,098)
- Bachelor's degree: 7.6% ($34,375)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.2%

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#19. Hudspeth County

- 10.7% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 44.5% ($11,641 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 30.6% ($14,956)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 14.2% ($30,774)
- Bachelor's degree: 10% ($36,607)
- Graduate or professional degree: 0.7%

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Anderson County

- 10.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 18.6% ($25,242 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 38.9% ($28,013)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 31.9% ($30,628)
- Bachelor's degree: 6.8% ($37,385)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.8% ($48,891)

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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#17. Reagan County

- 10.5% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 17.8% ($41,705 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 41.9% ($42,870)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 29.8% ($56,042)
- Bachelor's degree: 7.4% ($42,150)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.1% ($102,778)

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Travis K. Witt // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Culberson County

- 10.2% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 33.7% ($18,750 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 35% ($19,022)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 21.1% ($27,241)
- Bachelor's degree: 8.4% ($21,496)
- Graduate or professional degree: 1.8%

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Carol M. Highsmith // Wikimedia Commons

#15. Starr County

- 9.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 46.7% ($15,077 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 26.3% ($19,357)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 17.1% ($22,400)
- Bachelor's degree: 7.1% ($38,788)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.7% ($71,042)

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Canva

#14. Pecos County

- 9.8% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 30.9% ($25,000 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 35.9% ($35,417)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 23.4% ($33,115)
- Bachelor's degree: 6% ($50,795)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.9% ($33,036)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Newton County

- 9.7% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 16.6% ($8,612 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 42.9% ($26,068)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 30.7% ($35,221)
- Bachelor's degree: 7.7% ($54,614)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.1% ($53,462)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Liberty County

- 9.7% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 22.6% ($30,077 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 37.8% ($39,796)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 29.8% ($39,695)
- Bachelor's degree: 6.8% ($53,114)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.9% ($59,806)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#11. Upton County

- 9.6% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 24.4% ($28,214 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 41.2% ($26,641)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 24.7% ($42,292)
- Bachelor's degree: 6.2% ($62,917)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.4% ($48,875)

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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#10. Sterling County

- 9.5% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 10.5% ($37,917 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 52% ($49,318)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 27.9% ($52,031)
- Bachelor's degree: 5.3% ($48,654)
- Graduate or professional degree: 4.3%

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Duval County

- 9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 31.5% ($23,193 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 30.7% ($31,090)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 28.9% ($25,276)
- Bachelor's degree: 5.6% ($39,597)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.4% ($48,750)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#8. Bee County

- 8.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 24.6% ($16,612 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 34.2% ($29,375)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 32.3% ($30,380)
- Bachelor's degree: 5.1% ($53,700)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.8% ($84,063)

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Matthew T Rader // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Willacy County

- 8.9% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 34.2% ($17,663 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 35.7% ($23,217)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 21.2% ($23,932)
- Bachelor's degree: 6.5% ($43,842)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.3% ($51,076)

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Carol M. Highsmith // Wikimedia Commons

#6. Winkler County

- 8.2% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 30.9% ($40,500 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 30.3% ($40,496)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 30.7% ($42,383)
- Bachelor's degree: 5.8% ($58,750)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.5% ($41,250)

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#5. Cochran County

- 8% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 32.4% ($23,482 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 30.7% ($33,500)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 28.9% ($34,511)
- Bachelor's degree: 5.7% ($50,208)
- Graduate or professional degree: 2.3% ($52,500)

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Renelibrary // Wikimedia Commons

#4. La Salle County

- 7.5% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 36.5% ($16,359 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 38.6% ($34,418)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 17.5% ($33,500)
- Bachelor's degree: 6.2% ($55,992)
- Graduate or professional degree: 1.2%

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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Frio County

- 7.3% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 33.8% ($18,118 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 34.2% ($22,393)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 24.7% ($31,894)
- Bachelor's degree: 3.9% ($39,297)
- Graduate or professional degree: 3.4% ($62,981)

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25or6to4 // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Kenedy County

- 1% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 73.5% ($30,662 median earnings)
- High school graduate: 20.2% ($32,875)
- Some college or Associate's degree: 5.2% ($54,167)
- Bachelor's degree: 0.3%
- Graduate or professional degree: 0.8%

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Matthew Rutledge // Wikimedia Commons

#1. Loving County

- 0% of population 25 years and over with Bachelor's degree or higher

- Less than high school diploma: 19.7%
- High school graduate: 19.7%
- Some college or Associate's degree: 60.5%
- Bachelor's degree: 0%
- Graduate or professional degree: 0%

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