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Occupational Safety Technology Major

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Occupational Safety Technology

834 Associates's Degrees Annually
1,610 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
#51 in Popularity (Associate's)
$74,940 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Occupational Safety Technology Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many occupational safety and health technology/technician graduations there were in 2019-2020 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Bachelor’s Degree 1,785
Associate Degree 732
Basic Certificate 289
Undergraduate Certificate 44

What Occupational Safety Technology Majors Need to Know

People with careers related to OSHA 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 OSHA Majors

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

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  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Chemistry - Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Law and Government - Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.

Skills for OSHA Majors

When studying OSHA, you’ll learn many skills that will help you be successful in a wide range of jobs - even those that do not require a degree in the field. The following is a list of some of the most common skills needed for careers associated with this major:

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  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to 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.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Abilities for OSHA Majors

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

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  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.

Who Is Getting an Associate’s Degree in Occupational Safety Technology?

732 Associate's Degrees Annually
25% Percent Women
32% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
This major tends to be male dominated. About 75% of recent graduates are men.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

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

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Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 5
Black or African American 69
Hispanic or Latino 128
White 334
International Students 4
Other Races/Ethnicities 192

Geographic Diversity

Students from other countries are interested in OSHA, too. About 0.5% of those with this major are international students.

How Much Do Occupational Safety Technology Majors Make?

Salaries According to BLS

The median salary for someone in a career related to OSHA is $74,940. This median refers to all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.

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 an Occupational Safety Technology Major  74,940
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Median Salary for a High School Graduate  ( 30000 to 57900 )
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Median Salary for a Bachelor's Degree Holder  ( 45600 to 99000 )
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Median Salary for an Advanced Degree Holder  ( 55600 to 125400 )
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Some careers associated with OSHA 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 OSHA careers below.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
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) 4.7%
Bachelor’s Degree 75.1%
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. 4.7%
Master’s Degree 18.8%

Online Occupational Safety Technology Programs

In 2019-2020, 79 schools offered a OSHA program of some type. 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) 21 2
Certificate (2-4 Years) 0 0
Associate’s Degree 41 7
Bachelor’s Degree 9 4
Post-Baccalaureate 0 0
Master’s Degree 15 9
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 Occupational Safety Technology Worth It?

The median salary for a OSHA grad is $74,940 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 88% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $700,800 after 20 years!

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

Major Number of Grads
Quality Control Technology 450
Industrial Safety Technology 267
Other Quality Control & Safety Technologies 170
Hazardous Materials Information Systems Technology 4

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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