Geodetic Surveyors

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

Median Annual Wage: $57,050

Education: Bachelor's degree (71%); High school diploma or equivalent (13%); Post-baccalaureate certificate (8%)

Projected Growth: Average (8% to 14%)

Related Job Titles: Professor; Geodetic Advisor; Survey Director

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Source: O*NET OnLine information for Geodetic Surveyors.

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  • Calculate the exact horizontal and vertical position of points on the earth's surface.
  • Verify the mathematical correctness of newly collected survey data.
  • Plan or direct the work of geodetic surveying staff, providing technical consultation as needed.
  • Assess the quality of control data to determine the need for additional survey data for engineering, construction, or other projects.
  • Maintain databases of geodetic and related information including coordinate, descriptive, or quality assurance data.
  • Conduct surveys to determine exact positions, measurement of points, elevations, lines, areas, volumes, contours, or other features of land surfaces.
  • Request additional survey data when field collection errors occur or engineering surveying specifications are not maintained.
  • Compute horizontal and vertical coordinates of control networks, using direct leveling or other geodetic survey techniques such as triangulation, trilateration, and traversing to establish features of 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.
  • Compute, retrace, or adjust existing surveys of features such as highway alignments, property boundaries, utilities, control and other surveys to match the ground elevation-dependent grids, geodetic grids, or property boundaries and to ensure accuracy and continuity of data used in engineering, surveying, or construction projects.
  • Prepare progress or technical reports.
  • 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.
  • Distribute compiled geodetic data to government agencies or the general public.
  • Review existing standards, controls, or equipment used, recommending changes or upgrades as needed.
  • Provide training and interpretation in the use of methods or procedures for observing and checking controls for geodetic and plane coordinates.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Geodetic Surveyors.

  • 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.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Geodetic Surveyors.

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