Materials Scientists

General Information

Description

Research and study the structures and chemical properties of various natural and synthetic or composite materials, including metals, alloys, rubber, ceramics, semiconductors, polymers, and glass. Determine ways to strengthen or combine materials or develop new materials with new or specific properties for use in a variety of products and applications. Includes glass scientists, ceramic scientists, metallurgical scientists, and polymer scientists.

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Workplace at a Glance

What you can expect to experience while on the job

  • Responsibility
  • Exposure to job hazards
  • Physical activity
  • Decision making
  • Repetitiveness
  • Level of competition
  • Time pressure

Job Outlook

Overall employment of chemists and materials scientists is projected to grow 6 percent from 2020 to 2030, about as fast as the average for all occupations. About 9,100 openings for chemists and materials scientists are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Many of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as to retire.

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Salary

Average Salary

Salary

$99,460

Military salary*

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State-by-state Salary

Gray states indicate no data available

$156,260
$74,760
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Education

Most Common Education Levels

People in this career achieve this level of education.

  • Bachelor's degree 38%
  • Master's degree 23%
  • Doctoral degree 23%
  • Post-master's certificate 9%
  • Post-secondary certificate 4%
  • High school 0%
  • Some college 0%
  • Associate's degree 0%
  • Post baccalaureate 0%
  • Less than high school 0%
  • Post-doctoral training 0%
  • First professional degree 0%

Related College Majors

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Knowledge

  • Mathematics
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Computers and Electronics

Skills at a Glance

Skills helpful in this career

  • Verbal skills
  • Critical thinking & problem solving
  • Equipment operation & maintenance
  • Math & science skills
  • Technology design & control
  • Leadership
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