All About Soil and Plant Scientists
Job Description: Conduct research in breeding, physiology, production, yield, and management of crops and agricultural plants or trees, shrubs, and nursery stock, their growth in soils, and control of pests; or study the chemical, physical, biological, and mineralogical composition of soils as they relate to plant or crop growth. May classify and map soils and investigate effects of alternative practices on soil and crop productivity.
A Day in the Life of a Soil & Plant Scientist
- Investigate responses of soils to specific management practices to determine the effects of alternative practices on the environment.
- Identify or classify species of insects or allied forms, such as mites or spiders.
- Develop environmentally safe methods or products for controlling or eliminating weeds, crop diseases, or insect pests.
- Communicate research or project results to other professionals or the public or teach related courses, seminars, or workshops.
- Develop new or improved methods or products for controlling or eliminating weeds, crop diseases, or insect pests.
- Investigate responses of soils to specific management practices to determine the use capabilities of soils and the effects of alternative practices on soil productivity.
What a Soil & Plant Scientist Should Know
When polled, Soil and Plant Scientists say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:
Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Science: Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
Active Learning: Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Complex Problem Solving: Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Related Job Titles for this Occupation:
- Soil Specialist
- Plant Breeder Scientist
Is There Going to be Demand for Soil and Plant Scientists?
In 2016, there was an estimated number of 19,900 jobs in the United States for Soil and Plant Scientist. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 9% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 1,800 new jobs for Soil and Plant Scientist by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 2,200 job openings in this field each year.
The states with the most job growth for Soil & Plant Scientist are Nevada, Kansas, and North Carolina. Watch out if you plan on working in Alaska, Wyoming, or Oklahoma. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.
Do Soil and Plant Scientists Make A Lot Of Money?
Soil and Plant Scientists make between $38,570 and $115,400 a year.
Soil and Plant Scientists who work in Maryland, Massachusetts, or District of Columbia, make the highest salaries.
Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Soil and Plant Scientists in different U.S. states.
|State||Annual Mean Salary|
|District of Columbia||$88,840|
What Tools do Soil and Plant Scientists Use?
Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Soil and Plant Scientists:
- Microsoft Excel
- Microsoft Word
- Microsoft Office
- Microsoft PowerPoint
- Microsoft Access
- Word processing software
- Autodesk AutoCAD
- IBM SPSS Statistics
- Geographic information system GIS software
- Microsoft Active Server Pages ASP
- Leica Geosystems ERDAS IMAGINE
- ESRI ArcGIS software
- GAEA Technologies WinSieve
- SoilVision Systems SVOFFICE
How do I Become a Soil & Plant Scientist?
Are there Soil and Plant Scientists education requirements?
What work experience do I need to become a Soil & Plant Scientist?
Where Soil and Plant Scientists Work
The table below shows some of the most common industries where those employed in this career field work.
You May Also Be Interested In…
Those who work as a Soil and Plant Scientist sometimes switch careers to one of these choices:
Image Credit: W.carter via Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication
More about our data sources and methodologies.
|Request Info||Southern New Hampshire University You have goals. Southern New Hampshire University can help you get there. Whether you need a bachelor's degree to get into a career or want a master's degree to move up in your current career, SNHU has an online program for you. Find your degree from over 200 online programs. Learn More >|