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Fisheries Sciences Major

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Fisheries Sciences

371 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
41 Master's Degrees Annually
#218 in Popularity
$50,790 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Fisheries Sciences Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many fisheries sciences graduations there were in 2017-2018 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Bachelor’s Degree 371
Associate’s Degree 89
Master’s Degree 41
Undergraduate Certificate 19
Doctor’s Degree 17
Basic Certificate 6
Graduate Certificate 4

What Fisheries Sciences Majors Need to Know

O*NET surveyed people in occupations related to fisheries and asked them what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important for their jobs. The responses were rated on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most important.

Knowledge Areas for Fisheries Majors

According to O*NET survey takers, a major in fisheries should prepare you for careers in which you will need to be knowledgeable in the following areas:

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  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Biology - Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
  • Law and Government - Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • 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.

Skills for Fisheries Majors

When studying fisheries, 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:

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  • 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.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Abilities for Fisheries Majors

A major in fisheries will prepare for your careers in which the following abilities are important:

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  • 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.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

What Can You Do With a Fisheries Sciences Major?

People with a fisheries degree often go into the following careers:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
First-Line Supervisors of Aquacultural Workers 2.1% $46,960
Fish and Game Wardens 4.3% $57,710

Who Is Getting a Bachelor’s Degree in Fisheries Sciences?

371 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
46% Percent Women
12% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities
This is a less frequently chosen undergraduate major. Only 371 students graduated with a bachelor’s degree in fisheries sciences in 2018, making it rank #218 in popularity. According to recent stats this major attracts about equal numbers of men and women. Roughly 46% of the graduates are women, and 54% are men.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of fisheries majors is as follows:

Racial-Ethnic Diversity of Fisheries Students with Bachelor's Degrees
Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 7
Black or African American 1
Hispanic or Latino 20
White 317
International Students 0
Other Races/Ethnicities 26

How Much Do Fisheries Sciences Majors Make?

Bachelor’s Degree Starting Salary

Data from the U.S. Department of Education shows that fisheries sciences students who graduated in 2015-2017 with a bachelor’s degree made a median starting salary of $25,000 per year. During this timeframe, most salaries fell between $24,800 (25th percentile) and $26,700 (75th percentile).

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It’s important to note that just because the people reporting these salaries have a degree in fisheries, it does not mean that they are working in a job related to their degree.

Salaries According to BLS

Average salaries range from $50,790 to $59,260 (25th to 75th percentile) for careers related to fisheries. 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.

Median Salary for a Fisheries Sciences Major  ( 50790 to 59260 )
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250K
Median Salary for a High School Graduate  ( 30000 to 57900 )
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250K
Median Salary for a Bachelor's Degree Holder  ( 45600 to 99000 )
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250K
Median Salary for an Advanced Degree Holder  ( 55600 to 125400 )
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250K

Some careers associated with fisheries require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.

How much schooling do you really need to compete in today’s job market? People currently working in careers related to fisheries have obtained the following education levels.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
Less than a High School Diploma 20.4%
High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED) 21.2%
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) 3.7%
Some College Courses 2.9%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 2.3%
Bachelor’s Degree 44.5%
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. 3.2%
Master’s Degree 1.5%

Online Fisheries Sciences Programs

In the 2017-2018 academic year, 31 schools offered some type of fisheries sciences 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) 2 1
Certificate (1-2 years) 2 1
Certificate (2-4 Years) 0 0
Associate’s Degree 6 1
Bachelor’s Degree 1 1
Post-Baccalaureate 2 1
Master’s Degree 10 3
Post-Master’s 1 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 8 0
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

Is a Degree in Fisheries Sciences Worth It?

The median salary for a fisheries grad is $50,790 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 27% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $217,800 after 20 years!

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to fisheries.

Major Number of Grads
Natural Resources Conservation 20,787
Natural Resource Management 2,675
Wildlife Management 2,217
Forestry 2,155
Natural Resources Conservation (Other) 186

References

More about our data sources and methodologies.

Featured Environment / Natural Resources Schools

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