Overview and Key Facts
Jobs in 2029
What Do They Do?A soil scientist could...
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Not all dirt is created equal. In fact, different types of soil can make a big difference in some very important areas of our society. A building constructed on sandy soil might collapse during an earthquake, and crops planted in soil that doesn't drain properly might become waterlogged and rot after a rainstorm. It is the job of a soil scientist to evaluate soil conditions and help farmers, builders, and environmentalists decide how best to take advantage of local soils.
Do You Have the Skills and Characteristics of a Soil Scientist?
- Reading Comprehension: ? Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Science: ? Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
- Complex Problem Solving: ? Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
- Speaking: ? Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Active Learning: ? Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
- Critical Thinking: ? Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Writing: ? Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
- Judgment and Decision Making: ? Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- 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.
- Systems Analysis: ? Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
Core TasksThink about if you'd like the typical tasks a Soil Scientist might do:
- Communicate research or project results to other professionals or the public or teach related courses, seminars, or workshops.
- Conduct experiments to develop new or improved varieties of field crops, focusing on characteristics such as yield, quality, disease resistance, nutritional value, or adaptation to specific soils or climates.
- Develop new or improved methods or products for controlling or eliminating weeds, crop diseases, or insect pests.
- Provide information or recommendations to farmers or other landowners regarding ways in which they can best use land, promote plant growth, or avoid or correct problems such as erosion.
- Develop environmentally safe methods or products for controlling or eliminating weeds, crop diseases, or pests.
- Investigate soil problems or poor water quality to determine sources and effects.
- Conduct experiments investigating how soil forms, changes, or interacts with land-based ecosystems or living organisms.
- Conduct research to determine best methods of planting, spraying, cultivating, harvesting, storing, processing, or transporting horticultural products.
- Investigate responses of soils to specific management practices to determine the effects of alternative practices on the environment.
- Develop methods of conserving or managing soil that can be applied by farmers or forestry companies.
- Study ways to improve agricultural sustainability, such as the use of new methods of composting.
- Investigate responses of soils to specific management practices to determine the use capabilities of soils and the effects of alternative practices on soil productivity.
- Identify degraded or contaminated soils and develop plans to improve their chemical, biological, or physical characteristics.
- Develop ways of altering soils to suit different types of plants.
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