Physicists

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What do they do?

Conduct research into physical phenomena, develop theories on the basis of observation and experiments, and devise methods to apply physical laws and theories.

Also known as:

Biophysics Scientist, Health Physicist, Medical Physicist, Physicist, Research Consultant, Research Physicist, Research Scientist, Scientist

Typical Wages

Annual wages for Physicists in United States

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Projected Growth Rate

Employment of Physicists is projected to grow 3 percent from 2018 to 2028, more slowly than average compared to all occupations.

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Projected Employment

No Data Available

Projected Employment Rankings For Virginia:

  • 3.8%

    Percent Change

    Ranks #24 in job growth rate
  • 70

    Annual Projected Job Openings

    Ranks #9 in net job growth

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Typical College Majors

Majors that prepare Physicists:

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★ Number of granted degrees for degree type, Doctors degree research scholarship, is listed after the major.

Education Level

  • Doctorate or Professional Degree (60.5%)
  • Master's degree (25.6%)
  • Bachelor's degree (13.9%)
  • Associate's degree (0%)
  • Some college, no degree (0%)
  • High school diploma equivalent (0%)
  • Less than high school diploma (0%)

Percent of workers in this field

★ You’re seeing education information for Physicists(1) because we don’t have information for Physicists. Please note the information may not be the same for both occupations.

Colleges that Prepare

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Skills

People in this career often have these skills:

  • Science - Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Mathematics - Using mathematics to solve problems.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • 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.
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Knowledge

People in this career often know a lot about:

  • Physics - Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
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Abilities

People in this career often have talent in:

  • Mathematical Reasoning - The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Number Facility - The ability to add, subtract, multiply, or divide quickly and correctly.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Fluency of Ideas - The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).
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Activities: what you might do in a day

People in this career often do these activities:

  • Apply mathematical principles or statistical approaches to solve problems in scientific or applied fields.
  • Analyze geological or geographical data.
  • Develop theories or models of physical phenomena.
  • Prepare proposals or grant applications to obtain project funding.
  • Instruct college students in physical or life sciences.
  • Prepare scientific or technical reports or presentations.
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This page includes data from:

O*NET OnLine Career data: O*NET 25.1 Database by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (“USDOL/ETA”). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license. O*NET® is a trademark of USDOL/ETA

Occupation statistics: USDOL U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment Statistics

careeronestop logo Videos: CareerOneStop, USDOL/ETA and the Minnesota Department of Employment & Economic Development

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