Competitive Mean Salaries Across Industry Sectors for Geoscience-related Occupations in 2011

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Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The most recent salary data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate that geoscience-related occupations have competitive salaries across a variety of industry sectors. Petroleum Engineers and Natural Science Managers have the largest range in median salaries across industries ($84,770 - over $187,200 and $73,290 - $180,160, respectively). Petroleum Engineering occupations are found in nine broad-level industry sectors** and Natural Science Manager occupations are found in 15 broad-level industry sectors. Atmospheric, Earth, Marine and Space Science Postsecondary Teachers and Geography Postsecondary Teachers have the smallest range in median salaries ($78,820-$84590 and $60,820-$69,420, respectively), while Environmental Science Postsecondary Teachers have the largest range in median salaries ($32,700-$66,930) within the Education industry sector. Of the non-management geoscience-related occupations, Environmental Science occupations (e.g Environmental Engineers, Environmental Scientists, and Environmental and Environmental Engineering Technicians), Soil and Plant Scientists, and Geoscientist occupations are found in more than ten broad-level industry sectors.

*The 2011 median salaries for geoscience-related occupations by industry are on average 6% (+/- 5%) lower than the corresponding mean salary. We use median salaries instead of mean salaries because salary data are often asymmetrically distributed, and thus the median values give better estimates of centrality or a "typical" salary of an occupation. Note, this Currents includes more geoscience-related occupations (e.g. technicians and postsecondary teachers), and salary information than Currents #51.

**Broad-level industry sectors refer to the North American Industry Classication System(NAICS) 2-digit industry codes used by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. For more information see

To view this data interactively and explore salary percentiles for specic combinations of industries and occupations, visit: