Natural Resources & Conservation
Types of Degrees Natural Resources & Conservation Majors Are Getting
The following table lists how many natural resources and conservation graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.
|Education Level||Number of Grads|
What Natural Resources & Conservation Majors Need to Know
People with careers related to natural resources and conservation 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 Natural Resources & Conservation Majors
Natural Resources and Conservation majors often go into careers in which the following knowledge areas are important:
- English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Law and Government - Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
- Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
- 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.
Skills for Natural Resources & Conservation Majors
When studying natural resources and conservation, 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:
- 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.
- Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Abilities for Natural Resources & Conservation Majors
As a natural resources and conservation major, you will find yourself needing the following abilities:
- Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- 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.
- Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
What Can You Do With a Natural Resources & Conservation Major?
People with a natural resources and conservation degree often go into the following careers:
|Job Title||Job Growth Rate||Median Salary|
|Climate Change Analysts||11.1%||$71,130|
|Environmental Restoration Planners||11.1%||$71,130|
|Environmental Science Professors||10.1%||$79,910|
|Environmental Scientists and Specialists, Including Health||11.1%||$71,130|
|First-Line Supervisors of Aquacultural Workers||2.1%||$46,960|
|First-Line Supervisors of Logging Workers||2.1%||$46,960|
|Forest and Conservation Technicians||3.9%||$37,180|
|Forestry & Conservation Science Professors||4.5%||$86,900|
|Regulatory Affairs Managers||8.0%||$107,480|
|Soil and Water Conservationists||6.3%||$61,310|
|Wind Energy Project Managers||8.0%||$107,480|
|Zoologists and Wildlife Biologists||7.7%||$63,420|
Who Is Getting a Master’s Degree in Natural Resources & Conservation?
At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of natural resources and conservation majors is as follows:
|Race/Ethnicity||Number of Grads|
|Black or African American||137|
|Hispanic or Latino||327|
Students from other countries are interested in Natural Resources & Conservation, too. About 13.7% of those with this major are international students.
How Much Do Natural Resources & Conservation Majors Make?
Master’s Degree Starting Salary
According to 2017-2018 data from the U.S. Department of Education, students who graduated with a master’s degree in natural resources and conservation have a median salary of $53,000 during the early years of their career. During this timeframe, most salaries fell between $41,500 (25th percentile) and $57,100 (75th percentile).
It’s important to note that just because the people reporting these salaries have a degree in natural resources and conservation, it does not mean that they are working in a job related to their degree.
Salaries According to BLS
Natural Resources and Conservation majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $53,240 to $80,310 (25th to 75th percentile). This range includes 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.
Amount of Education Required for Careers Related to Natural Resources & Conservation
Some degrees associated with natural resources and conservation may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. Whatever the case may be, pursuing more education usually means that more career options will be available to you.
Find out what the typical degree level is for natural resources and conservation careers below.
|Education Level||Percentage of Workers|
|Less than a High School Diploma||4.6%|
|High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED)||15.3%|
|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)||6.4%|
|Some College Courses||7.5%|
|Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree)||7.1%|
|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.||1.5%|
|Post-Master’s Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Master’s degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees at the doctoral level.||0.5%|
|First Professional Degree - awarded for completion of a program that: requires at least 2 years of college work before entrance into the program, includes a total of at least 6 academic years of work to complete, and provides all remaining academic requirements to begin practice in a profession.||0.8%|
Online Natural Resources & Conservation Programs
In the 2018-2019 academic year, 1,151 schools offered some type of natural resources and conservation 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)||168||12|
|Certificate (1-2 years)||75||4|
|Certificate (2-4 Years)||2||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Research)||173||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice)||0||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Other)||0||0|
Is a Degree in Natural Resources & Conservation Worth It?
The median salary for a natural resources and conservation grad is $65,320 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.
This is 64% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $508,400 after 20 years!
Majors Related to Natural Resources & Conservation
You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to natural resources and conservation.
|Major||Number of Grads|
|Computer & Information Sciences||220,337|
|Biological & Biomedical Sciences||162,961|
|Mathematics & Statistics||49,748|
|Agriculture & Agriculture Operations||38,513|
|Architecture & Related Services||17,753|
|Communications Technologies & Support||15,972|
|Science Technologies / Technicians||7,448|
- College Factual
- College Scorecard
- National Center for Education Statistics
- O*NET Online
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
- Usual Weekly Earnings of Wage and Salary Workers First Quarter 2020
- Image Credit: By Lynn Betts under License
More about our data sources and methodologies.