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Archeologist

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What You Need to Know About Archeologist

Job Description & Duties Conduct research to reconstruct record of past human life and culture from human remains, artifacts, architectural features, and structures recovered through excavation, underwater recovery, or other means of discovery.

Daily Life Of an Archeologist

  • Record the exact locations and conditions of artifacts uncovered in diggings or surveys, using drawings and photographs as necessary.
  • Develop and test theories concerning the origin and development of past cultures.
  • Study objects and structures recovered by excavation to identify, date, and authenticate them and to interpret their significance.
  • Research, survey, or assess sites of past societies and cultures in search of answers to specific research questions.
  • Create a grid of each site and draw and update maps of unit profiles, stratum surfaces, features, and findings.
  • Compare findings from one site with archeological data from other sites to find similarities or differences.

What Skills Do You Need to Work as an Archeologist?

When polled, Archeologists say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

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.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Active Learning: Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

  • Archeology Technician
  • Associate Director
  • Principal Archaeologist
  • Archeologist
  • Curator

Is There Going to be Demand for Archeologists?

There were about 7,600 jobs for Archeologist in 2016 (in the United States). New jobs are being produced at a rate of 3.9% which is below the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 300 new jobs for Archeologist by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 700 job openings in this field each year.

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The states with the most job growth for Archeologist are Washington, Nebraska, and Utah. Watch out if you plan on working in Pennsylvania, Wyoming, or West Virginia. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Average Archeologists Salary

Archeologists make between $36,840 and $97,170 a year.

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Archeologists who work in Massachusetts, Hawaii, or Idaho, make the highest salaries.

How much do Archeologists make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $54,390
Arizona $64,660
Arkansas $58,240
California $67,030
Colorado $63,940
Florida $54,130
Georgia $67,550
Hawaii $82,550
Idaho $71,520
Illinois $62,650
Kentucky $59,740
Louisiana $68,690
Maryland $53,680
Massachusetts $91,140
Missouri $56,880
Montana $62,690
Nebraska $74,280
Nevada $60,480
New Jersey $64,950
New Mexico $58,300
New York $67,860
North Carolina $63,690
North Dakota $62,110
Ohio $63,280
Oklahoma $56,150
Oregon $63,090
Pennsylvania $70,770
South Carolina $62,230
South Dakota $52,340
Tennessee $59,690
Texas $71,590
Utah $66,410
Virginia $72,480
Washington $74,300
West Virginia $50,550
Wisconsin $55,720
Wyoming $67,400

What Tools & Technology do Archeologists Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Archeologists:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Web browser software
  • Microsoft Access
  • Word processing software
  • Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop
  • Facebook
  • IBM SPSS Statistics
  • Geographic information system GIS software
  • Graphics software
  • ESRI ArcView
  • ESRI ArcInfo
  • Leica Geosystems ERDAS IMAGINE
  • ESRI ArcGIS software
  • Golden Software Surfer

Becoming an Archeologist

What education is needed to be an Archeologist?

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How Long Does it Take to Become an Archeologist?

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Where Archeologists Are Employed

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The table below shows some of the most common industries where those employed in this career field work.

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Those interested in being an Archeologist may also be interested in:

References:

Image Credit: via CC0 Public Domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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