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Surveying Major

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Surveying

244 Associates's Degrees Annually
178 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
#101 in Popularity (Associate's)
$66,440 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Surveying Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many surveying technology/surveying graduations there were in 2019-2020 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Basic Certificate 260
Associate Degree 250
Bachelor’s Degree 192
Undergraduate Certificate 87

What Surveying Majors Need to Know

People with careers related to surveying were asked what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important for their jobs. They weighted these areas on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the highest.

Knowledge Areas for Surveying Majors

Surveying majors often go into careers in which the following knowledge areas are important:

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  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Geography - Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

Skills for Surveying Majors

The following list of skills has been highlighted as some of the most essential for careers related to surveying:

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  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Mathematics - Using mathematics to solve problems.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Abilities for Surveying Majors

Some of the most crucial abilities to master while a surveying student include the following:

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  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Mathematical Reasoning - The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

What Can You Do With a Surveying Major?

People with a surveying degree often go into the following careers:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Mapping Technicians 10.6% $44,380
Surveying Technicians 10.6% $44,380

Who Is Getting an Associate’s Degree in Surveying?

250 Associate's Degrees Annually
12% Percent Women
13% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
This major tends to be male dominated. About 88% of recent graduates are men.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of surveying majors is as follows:

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Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 1
Black or African American 3
Hispanic or Latino 20
White 210
International Students 3
Other Races/Ethnicities 13

Geographic Diversity

Surveying appeals to people across the globe. About 1.2% of those with this major are international students.

How Much Do Surveying Majors Make?

Salaries According to BLS

Surveying majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $47,690 to $68,340 (25th to 75th percentile). This range includes all degree levels, so you may expect those with a more advanced degree to make more while those with less advanced degrees will typically make less.

To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.

Median Salary for a Surveying Major  ( 47690 to 68340 )
0K
250K
Median Salary for a High School Graduate  ( 30000 to 57900 )
0K
250K
Median Salary for a Bachelor's Degree Holder  ( 45600 to 99000 )
0K
250K
Median Salary for an Advanced Degree Holder  ( 55600 to 125400 )
0K
250K

Some careers associated with surveying require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.

Find out what the typical degree level is for surveying careers below.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED) 11.0%
Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production) 16.6%
Some College Courses 10.6%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 19.4%
Bachelor’s Degree 35.0%
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Baccalaureate degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees carrying the title of Master. 1.1%
Master’s Degree 7.2%

Online Surveying Programs

In the 2019-2020 academic year, 99 schools offered some type of surveying technology/surveying program. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.

Degree Level Colleges Offering Programs Colleges Offering Online Classes
Certificate (Less Than 1 Year) 0 0
Certificate (1-2 years) 28 1
Certificate (2-4 Years) 0 0
Associate’s Degree 66 1
Bachelor’s Degree 2 0
Post-Baccalaureate 0 0
Master’s Degree 1 0
Post-Master’s 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 1 0
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

Is a Degree in Surveying Worth It?

The median salary for a surveying grad is $66,440 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 67% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $530,800 after 20 years!

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to surveying.

Major Number of Grads
Hydraulics & Fluid Power Technology 58
Other Engineering-Related Technologies 34

References

*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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