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Summary Report for:
19-1011.00 - Animal Scientists

Conduct research in the genetics, nutrition, reproduction, growth, and development of domestic farm animals.

Sample of reported job titles: Animal Nutritionist, Animal Scientist, Beef Cattle Specialist, Research and Development Director, Animal Management Systems Specialist, Animal Nutrition Consultant, Animal Science Section Leader, Beef Cattle Nutritionist, Beef Technical Services Manager, Dairy Consultant

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Tasks  |  Tools & Technology  |  Knowledge  |  Skills  |  Abilities  |  Work Activities  |  Work Context  |  Job Zone  |  Education  |  Credentials  |  Interests  |  Work Styles  |  Work Values  |  Related Occupations  |  Wages & Employment  |  Job Openings  |  Additional Information

Tasks

  • Communicate research findings to the scientific community, producers, and the public.
  • Study effects of management practices, processing methods, feed, or environmental conditions on quality and quantity of animal products, such as eggs and milk.
  • Conduct research concerning animal nutrition, breeding, or management to improve products or processes.
  • Study nutritional requirements of animals and nutritive values of animal feed materials.
  • Advise producers about improved products and techniques that could enhance their animal production efforts.
  • Research and control animal selection and breeding practices to increase production efficiency and improve animal quality.
  • Develop improved practices in feeding, housing, sanitation, or parasite and disease control of animals.
  • Crossbreed animals with existing strains or cross strains to obtain new combinations of desirable characteristics.
  • Determine genetic composition of animal populations and heritability of traits, using principles of genetics.

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Tools & Technology

Tools used in this occupation:

Animal husbandry equipment — Animal feeders; Artificial insemination kits; Dehorners; Ear punches
Densitometers — Laser densitometers; Scanning densitometers
Incubators or brooders for poultry — Brooders; Poultry incubators
Laboratory flasks — Erlenmeyer flasks; Volumetric flasks
Stunner — Captive bolt stunners; Electric stunners

Technology used in this occupation:

Analytical or scientific software — Deoxyribonucleic acid DNA sequence analysis software; Nutrition Balance Analyzer NUTBAL; SAS software; VSNi GenStat
Data base user interface and query software — DAGRIS *; Domestic Animal Diversity Information Service DAD-IS *; Microsoft Access; Online Mendelian Inheritance in Animals OMIA *
Electronic mail software — Email software
Office suite software — Microsoft Office software
Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel

* Software developed by a government agency and/or distributed as freeware or shareware.

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Knowledge

Biology — Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Food Production — Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.
Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Chemistry — Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
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.
Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Administration and Management — Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

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Skills

Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Science — Using scientific rules and methods to solve 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.
Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

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Abilities

Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
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.
Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.

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Work Activities

Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Communicating with Persons Outside Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.

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Work Context

Telephone — 88% responded “Every day.”
Electronic Mail — 84% responded “Every day.”
Duration of Typical Work Week — 90% responded “More than 40 hours.”
Face-to-Face Discussions — 78% responded “Every day.”
Freedom to Make Decisions — 61% responded “A lot of freedom.”
Structured versus Unstructured Work — 47% responded “A lot of freedom.”
Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 44% responded “Extremely important.”
Contact With Others — 56% responded “Contact with others most of the time.”
Work With Work Group or Team — 50% responded “Very important.”
Letters and Memos — 69% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”

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Job Zone

Title Job Zone Five: Extensive Preparation Needed
Education Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).
Related Experience Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience are needed for these occupations. Many require more than five years of experience. For example, surgeons must complete four years of college and an additional five to seven years of specialized medical training to be able to do their job.
Job Training Employees may need some on-the-job training, but most of these occupations assume that the person will already have the required skills, knowledge, work-related experience, and/or training.
Job Zone Examples These occupations often involve coordinating, training, supervising, or managing the activities of others to accomplish goals. Very advanced communication and organizational skills are required. Examples include librarians, lawyers, sports medicine physicians, wildlife biologists, school psychologists, surgeons, treasurers, and controllers.
SVP Range (8.0 and above)

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Education


Percentage of Respondents
Education Level Required
47   Doctoral degree
22   Bachelor's degree
19   Master's degree

This occupation may require a background in the following science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) educational disciplines:

Life Sciences — Agricultural Animal Breeding; Agriculture, General; Animal Sciences; Animal Sciences, General; Dairy Science; Poultry Science (see all 7 programs)

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Credentials

Find Training Find Certifications

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Interests

Interest code: IR

Investigative — Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

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Work Styles

Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.

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Work Values

Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Recognition — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.

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Related Occupations

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25-1053.00 Environmental Science Teachers, Postsecondary
25-9021.00 Farm and Home Management Advisors Green Occupation

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Wages & Employment Trends

Median wages (2013) $30.89 hourly, $64,260 annual
State wages Local Salary Info
 
Employment (2012) 3,000 employees
Projected growth (2012-2022) Average (8% to 14%) Average (8% to 14%)
Projected job openings (2012-2022) 1,200
State trends Employment Trends
 
Top industries (2012)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2013 wage data external site and 2012-2022 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

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Job Openings on the Web

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Sources of Additional Information

Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.

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