Political Scientists

General Information

Description

Study the origin, development, and operation of political systems. May study topics, such as public opinion, political decisionmaking, and ideology. May analyze the structure and operation of governments, as well as various political entities. May conduct public opinion surveys, analyze election results, or analyze public documents.

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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

Employment of political scientists is projected to grow 6 percent from 2019 to 2029, faster than the average for all occupations. Increased demand for public policy analysis in both government and non-government organizations will support employment growth for these workers.  half of all political scientists are employed by the federal government. Political scientists will continue to be needed in government to assess the impact of government policies, such as the efficiencies of public services, effects of budget changes, and advantages of proposed improvements. Political organizations, lobbying firms, and labor unions rely on the knowledge of political scientists to manage complicated legal and regulatory issues and policies. Political scientists will be needed at research and policy institutes to focus specifically on politics and political theory. Organizations that research or advocate for specific causes, such as immigration policy, healthcare, or the environment, also need political scientists to analyze policies relating to their field.

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Salary

Average Salary

Salary

$122,220

Military salary*

$85,077

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State-by-state Salary

Gray states indicate no data available

$141,600
$69,650
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Education

Most Common Education Levels

People in this career achieve this level of education.

  • Doctoral degree 73%
  • Master's degree 13%
  • Bachelor's degree 6%
  • Post baccalaureate 3%
  • Post-doctoral training 3%
  • High school 0%
  • Some college 0%
  • Associate's degree 0%
  • Less than high school 0%
  • Post-master's certificate 0%
  • First professional degree 0%
  • Post-secondary certificate 0%

Knowledge

  • Law and Government
  • English Language
  • Education and Training
  • Sociology and Anthropology
  • Geography

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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