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Geodetic Surveyor

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What Does it Take to Be a Geodetic Surveyor?

Career Description Measure large areas of the Earth’s surface using satellite observations, global navigation satellite systems (GNSS), light detection and ranging (LIDAR), or related sources.

A Day in the Life of a Geodetic Surveyor

  • Analyze control or survey data to ensure adherence to project specifications or land survey standards.
  • Plan or direct the work of geodetic surveying staff, providing technical consultation as needed.
  • Calculate the exact horizontal and vertical position of points on the Earth’s surface.
  • Read current literature, talk with colleagues, continue education, or participate in professional organizations or conferences to keep abreast of developments in technology, equipment, or systems.
  • Request additional survey data when field collection errors occur or engineering surveying specifications are not maintained.
  • Determine orientation of tracts of land, including position, boundaries, size, and shape, using theodolites, electronic distance-measuring equipment, satellite-based positioning equipment, land information systems, or other geodetic survey equipment.

Geodetic Surveyor Needed Skills

These are the skills Geodetic Surveyors say are the most useful in their careers:

Mathematics: Using mathematics to solve problems.

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

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.

Complex Problem Solving: Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

  • Remote Sensing Surveyor
  • Geodetic Surveyor
  • Survey Technologist
  • Digital Measurement Advisor
  • Measurement Advisor

Job Outlook for Geodetic Surveyors

In the United States, there were 44,800 jobs for Geodetic Surveyor in 2016. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 11.2% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 5,000 new jobs for Geodetic Surveyor by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 3,800 job openings in this field each year.

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The states with the most job growth for Geodetic Surveyor are Utah, Florida, and North Dakota. Watch out if you plan on working in Vermont, Washington, or Maine. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Salary for a Geodetic Surveyor

Geodetic Surveyors make between $35,160 and $102,220 a year.

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Geodetic Surveyors who work in California, Washington, or Nevada, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Geodetic Surveyors in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $56,010
Alaska $79,940
Arizona $62,050
Arkansas $48,880
California $91,010
Colorado $66,010
Connecticut $70,810
Delaware $73,110
Florida $57,930
Georgia $59,500
Hawaii $65,880
Idaho $65,550
Illinois $72,540
Indiana $60,890
Iowa $65,250
Kansas $58,420
Kentucky $56,510
Louisiana $62,810
Maine $59,360
Maryland $65,220
Massachusetts $66,000
Michigan $58,850
Minnesota $65,950
Mississippi $46,660
Missouri $59,980
Montana $63,020
Nebraska $54,750
Nevada $80,520
New Hampshire $63,710
New Jersey $70,120
New Mexico $74,470
New York $77,660
North Carolina $70,460
North Dakota $75,360
Ohio $62,520
Oklahoma $54,130
Oregon $68,130
Pennsylvania $62,400
Rhode Island $60,070
South Carolina $49,570
South Dakota $67,970
Tennessee $49,280
Texas $59,980
Utah $69,150
Vermont $51,890
Virginia $70,230
Washington $85,860
West Virginia $65,750
Wisconsin $62,820
Wyoming $66,160

What Tools & Technology do Geodetic Surveyors Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Geodetic Surveyors may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Hypertext markup language HTML
  • Web browser software
  • Email software
  • Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Geographic information system GIS software
  • Bentley Microstation
  • ESRI ArcView
  • ESRI ArcGIS software
  • Virtual reality modeling language VRML software
  • Trimble Terramodel
  • Traverse PC
  • Autodesk CAiCE Visual Transportation
  • SiteComp Survey
  • QuickCogo

Becoming a Geodetic Surveyor

What education or degrees do I need to become a Geodetic Surveyor?

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What work experience do I need to become a Geodetic Surveyor?

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Where Geodetic Surveyors Are Employed

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The table below shows the approximate number of Geodetic Surveyors employed by various industries.

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You May Also Be Interested In…

Those thinking about becoming a Geodetic Surveyor might also be interested in the following careers:

Those who work as a Geodetic Surveyor sometimes switch careers to one of these choices:

References:

Image Credit: Mike1979 Russia via Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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