Surveyor Careers

Career Overview

Surveyors are also sometimes called cartographers, photogrammetrists, and surveying and mapping technicians. Surveyors map and measure the earth’s surface or geography. They establish boundaries for areas of land, air, and water. Their written descriptions become legal documents on property deeds and leases. They also help take measurements for construction areas and mining locations. They help describe the different shapes and elevations of land areas.

Education Requirements

Bachelor’s Degree

Program Recommendations:

Computer Science
Physical Science

Community colleges and technical training centers also offer 1 to 3 year surveying technology programs. The best jobs go to those with a bachelor’s degree.


This field is requires computer skills due to the creation of GIS systems, Geographic Information Systems.


All states require surveyors to be licensed. To get a license, individuals must pass a test given by the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES). After this examination is passed, a surveyor must then work under another more experienced surveyor for 4 years. They then take another exam, the Principals and Practices of Surveying. Specific state requirements may vary.

Top Colleges for Surveyors:

Ohio State University, Columbus
Oregon Institute of Technology
University of Maine
Westwood College
Ashford University

Employment Trends

Average Salary for surveyors in 2008: $51,180
Job Availability in 2008: 147,000
Projected Employment in 2018: 174,500

Related Jobs:

Architects, except landscape and naval
Landscape architects
Environmental scientists and specialists
Social scientists, other
Urban and regional planners

Article Reference:

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