Bureau of Labor Statistics

Field of degree: Physical science

Physical science field of degree. Employment: 1,806,350. Median annual wage: $70,000.

Physical science field of degree. Employment: 1,806,350. Median annual wage: $70,000

Table 1.

View Chart Data

Table 1. Physical science degree, 2018

Data

Physical science

All fields

Employment

1,806,350 55,381,020

Median wage

$70,000 $59,000

Percent employed part time

13 15

Percent employed in occupations requiring at least a bachelor's degree

66 59

Percent with an advanced degree

54 37

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey.

Chart 1.

View Chart Data

Chart 1. Types of physical science majors, 2018

Physical science majors

Major share

Chemistry

35%

Multi-disciplinary or general science

28

Physics

18

Geology and earth science

11

Materials science

2

Other

6

Note: The sum of percents by major may not total 100 due to rounding.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey.

Chart 2.

View Chart Data

Chart 2. Employment distribution of workers with a physical science degree, by occupational group, 2018

Occupational group

Occupational group share

Healthcare practitioners and technical occupations

16%

Management occupations

14

Educational instruction and library occupations

12

Life, physical, and social science occupations

12

Computer and mathematical occupations

8

Other

39

Note: The sum of percents by major may not total 100 due to rounding.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey.

Table 2.

View Chart Data

Table 2. Top-employing occupations for workers with a physical science degree

Occupational Outlook Handbook profile

Percent growth, projected 2019–29

Typical entry-level education

Percent degree holders in this field, this occupation, 2018

Percent of this occupation with an advanced degree, 2018

Software developers and software quality assurance analysts and testers

22% Bachelor's degree 3% 33%

Health specialties teachers, postsecondary

21 Doctoral or professional degree 6 74

Management analysts

11 Bachelor's degree 2 36

Registered nurses

7 Bachelor's degree 2 12

Chemists

5 Bachelor's degree 2 41

Physicians, all other; and ophthalmologists, except pediatric

4 Doctoral or professional degree 7 100

Elementary school teachers, except special education

4 Bachelor's degree 3 50

Personal service managers, all other; entertainment and recreation managers, except gambling; and managers, all other

-2 Bachelor's degree 5 21

Physical scientists, all other

-3 Bachelor's degree 3 70

Chief executives

-10 Bachelor's degree 2 30

Note: Occupational profiles may comprise multiple SOC occupations, which may have differing education categories.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Employment Projections program (projected growth, entry-level education) and U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey (degree holders, advanced degrees).

Suggested citation:

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Field of degree: Physical science,
at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/field-of-degree/physical-science/physical-science-field-of-degree.htm (visited July 27, 2021).

Last Modified Date: Monday, November 30, 2020

Telephone: 1-202-691-5700 www.bls.gov/ooh Contact OOH

View this page on regular www.bls.gov

Permanently disable mobile site