SET 14 - Natural Science Topics
Natural World and Natural Science Topics
What moves you?
The topics that energize and move you are essential guides. They drive your commitment.
SET 14: Natural World - Natural Science Topics
What do you want to pursue?
The world that surrounds you is an unending source of curiosity. You recognize that everything springs from it. You want to understand, explain and interact with the natural world to benefit people.
Architecture and Engineering Occupations
Apply knowledge of engineering technology and biological science to agricultural problems concerned with power and machinery, electrification, structures, soil and water conservation, and processing of agricultural products.
Bioengineers and Biomedical Engineers
Apply knowledge of engineering, biology, chemistry, computer science, and biomechanical principles to the design, development, and evaluation of biological, agricultural, and health systems and products, such as artificial organs, prostheses, instrumentation, medical information systems, and health management and care delivery systems.
Similar: Genetic Engineers
Cartographers and Photogrammetrists
Research, study, and prepare maps and other spatial data in digital or graphic form for one or more purposes, such as legal, social, political, educational, and design purposes. May collect, analyze, and interpret geographic information provided by geodetic surveys, aerial photographs, and satellite data.
Design chemical plant equipment and devise processes for manufacturing chemicals and products, such as gasoline, synthetic rubber, plastics, detergents, cement, paper, and pulp, by applying principles and technology of chemistry, physics, and engineering.
Similar: Absorption and Adsorption Engineers; Optical Engineers
Electrical and Electronics Engineers
Research, design, develop, test, or supervise the manufacturing and installation of electrical equipment, components, or systems for commercial, industrial, military, or scientific use.
Research, design, plan, or perform engineering duties in the prevention, control, and remediation of environmental hazards using various engineering disciplines. Work may include waste treatment, site remediation, or pollution control technology.
Similar: Environmental Engineering Technologists and Technicians video; Water/Wastewater Engineers; Validation Engineers
Materials Engineers and Scientists
Evaluate materials and develop machinery and processes to manufacture materials for use in products that must meet specialized design and performance specifications. Develop new uses for known materials.
Mining and Geological Engineers
Conduct subsurface surveys to identify the characteristics of potential land or mining development sites. May specify the ground support systems, processes, and equipment for safe, economical, and environmentally sound extraction or underground construction activities. May inspect areas for unsafe geological conditions, equipment, and working conditions.
Similar: Mining Safety Engineers
Devise methods to improve oil and gas extraction and production and determine the need for new or modified tool designs. Oversee drilling and offer technical advice.
Similar: Energy Engineers; Fuel Cell Engineers; Nuclear Engineers video; Nuclear Technicians; Solar Energy Systems Engineers; Wind Energy Engineers
Construction and Extraction Occupations
Operate a variety of drills such as rotary, churn, and pneumatic to tap subsurface water and salt deposits, to remove core samples during mineral exploration or soil testing, and to facilitate the use of explosives in mining or construction. Includes horizontal and earth boring machine operators.
Similar: Continuous Mining Machine Operators; Conveyor Operators and Tenders; Crane and Tower Operators; Crushing, Grinding, and Polishing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders video; Derrick Operators, Oil and Gas video; Dredge Operators; Excavating and Loading Machine and Dragline Operators; Surface Mining video; Explosives Workers, Ordnance Handling Experts, and Blasters video; Hoist and Winch Operators; Rock Splitters, Quarry video; Roof Bolters, Mining; Rotary Drill Operators, Oil and Gas; Roustabouts, Oil and Gas video; Service Unit Operators, Oil and Gas; Underground Mining Machine Operators; Wellhead Pumpers
Install, maintain, and repair electrical wiring, equipment, and fixtures. Ensure that work is in accordance with relevant codes. May install or service street lights, intercom systems, or electrical control systems.
First-Line Supervisors of Construction Trades and Extraction Workers
Directly supervise and coordinate activities of construction or extraction workers.
Similar: Geographic Information Systems Technologists and Technicians
Hazardous Materials Removal Workers
Identify, remove, pack, transport, or dispose of hazardous materials, including asbestos, lead-based paint, waste oil, fuel, transmission fluid, radioactive materials, or contaminated soil. Specialized training and certification in hazardous materials handling or a confined entry permit are generally required. May operate earth-moving equipment or trucks.
Education and Library Occupations
Farm and Home Management Educators
Instruct and advise individuals and families engaged in agriculture, agricultural-related processes, or home management activities. Demonstrate procedures and apply research findings to advance agricultural and home management activities. May develop educational outreach programs.
Farming and Fishing Occupations
Agricultural and Food Science Technicians
Work with agricultural scientists in plant, fiber, and animal research, or assist with animal breeding and nutrition. Set up or maintain laboratory equipment and collect samples from crops or animals. Prepare specimens or record data to assist scientists in biology or related life science experiments.
Inspect agricultural commodities, processing equipment, and facilities, and fish and logging operations, to ensure compliance with regulations and laws governing health, quality, and safety.
Agricultural workers maintain crops and tend to livestock.
Trap, catch, or gather aquatic animals and plants. May use nets, traps, or other equipment. May haul catch onto ship or other vessel.
Forest and Conservation Workers
Under supervision, perform manual labor necessary to develop, maintain, or protect areas such as forests, forested areas, woodlands, wetlands, and rangelands through such activities as raising and transporting seedlings; combating insects, pests, and diseases harmful to plant life; and building structures to control water, erosion, and leaching of soil.
Similar: Forest Conservation Technicians
Logging workers harvest forests to provide the raw material for many consumer goods and industrial products.
Similar: Fallers, Log Graders and Scalers; Logging Equipment Operators
Healthcare and Technical Occupations
Diagnose, treat, and prevent disorders by stimulating specific acupuncture points within the body using acupuncture needles. May also use cups, nutritional supplements, therapeutic massage, acupressure, and other alternative health therapies.
Similar: Holistic Therapists
Administer oral hygiene care to patients. Assess patient oral hygiene problems or needs and maintain health records. Advise patients on oral health maintenance and disease prevention. May provide advanced care such as providing fluoride treatment or administering topical anesthesia.
Dietitians and Nutritionists
Plan and conduct food service or nutritional programs to assist in the promotion of health and control of disease. May supervise activities of a department providing quantity food services, counsel individuals, or conduct nutritional research.
General Internal Medicine Physicians
Diagnose and provide nonsurgical treatment for a wide range of diseases and injuries of internal organ systems. Provide care mainly for adults and adolescents, and are based primarily in an outpatient care setting.
Similar: Allergists and Immunologists video; Anesthesiologists video; Audiologists video; Cardiologists; Dermatologists; Emergency Medicine Physicians; Family Medicine Physicians video; Healthcare Diagnosing or Treating Practitioners; Hospitalists; Naturopathic Physicians video; Medical and Health Services Managers video; Neurologists; Obstetricians and Gynecologists video; Ophthalmologists; Pathologists; Pediatricians video; Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Physicians; Podiatrist video; Urologists
Assess individual or family risk for a variety of inherited conditions, such as genetic disorders and birth defects. Provide information to other healthcare providers or to individuals and families concerned with the risk of inherited conditions.
Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technologists
Perform complex medical laboratory tests for diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May train or supervise staff.
Similar: Cytogenetic Technologists; Dental and Ophthalmic Laboratory Technicians and Medical Appliance Technicians video; Diagnostic Medical Sonographers and Cardiovascular Technologists and Technicians video; Dietetic Technicians video; Emergency Medical Technicians and Paramedics video; Endoscopy Technicians; Histology Technicians; Histotechnologists; Magnetic Resonance Imaging Technologists video; Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technicians; Medical Dosimetrists; Medical Records and Health Information Technicians video; Neurodiagnostic Technologists; Nuclear Medicine Technologists video; Ophthalmic Medical Technicians and Technologist video
Diagnose and treat acute, episodic, or chronic illness, independently or as part of a healthcare team. May focus on health promotion and disease prevention.
Design, measure, fit, and adapt lenses and frames for client according to written optical prescription or specification. Assist client with inserting, removing, and caring for contact lenses. Assist client with selecting frames. Measure customer for size of eyeglasses and coordinate frames with facial and eye measurements and optical prescription.
Provide healthcare services typically performed by a physician, under the supervision of a physician. Conduct complete physicals, provide treatment, and counsel patients. May, in some cases, prescribe medication. Must graduate from an accredited educational program for physician assistants.
Assess, plan, organize, and participate in rehabilitative programs that improve mobility, relieve pain, increase strength, and improve or correct disabling conditions resulting from disease or injury.
Repairing injuries… preventing disease… even transplanting organs: surgeons are literally on the “cutting edge” of medicine.
Diagnose, treat, or research diseases and injuries of animals. Includes veterinarians who conduct research and development, inspect livestock, or care for pets and companion animals.
Installation and Maintenance Occupations
Work below surface of water, using surface-supplied air or scuba equipment to inspect, repair, remove, or install equipment and structures. May use a variety of power and hand tools, such as drills, sledgehammers, torches, and welding equipment.
Electrical Power-Line Installers and Repairers
Install or repair cables or wires used in electrical power or distribution systems. May erect poles and light or heavy duty transmission towers.
Perform technical activities at power plants or individual installations necessary for the generation of power from geothermal energy sources. Monitor and control operating activities at geothermal power generation facilities and perform maintenance and repairs as necessary.
Landscaping and Groundskeeping Workers
Landscape or maintain grounds of property using hand or power tools or equipment. Workers typically perform a variety of tasks, which may include any combination of the following: sod laying, mowing, trimming, planting, watering, fertilizing, digging, raking, sprinkler installation, and installation of mortarless segmental concrete masonry wall units.
Similar: Botanists; Building Cleaning Workers; First-Line Supervisors of Housekeeping and Janitorial Workers; First-Line Supervisors of Landscaping; Gardeners; Lawn Service, and Groundskeeping Workers; Maids and Housekeeping Cleaners; Tree Trimmers and Pruners
Pest Control Workers
Apply or release chemical solutions or toxic gases and set traps to kill or remove pests and vermin that infest buildings and surrounding areas.
Wind Turbine Service Technicians
Inspect, diagnose, adjust, or repair wind turbines. Perform maintenance on wind turbine equipment including resolving electrical, mechanical, and hydraulic malfunctions.
Biofuels/Biodiesel Technology and Product Development Managers
Define, plan, or execute biofuels/biodiesel research programs that evaluate alternative feedstock and process technologies with near-term commercial potential.
Similar: Biofuels Production Managers
Biomass Power Plant Managers
Manage operations at biomass power generation facilities. Direct work activities at plant, including supervision of operations and maintenance staff.
Brownfield Redevelopment Specialists and Site Managers
Plan and direct cleanup and redevelopment of contaminated properties for reuse. Does not include properties sufficiently contaminated to qualify as Superfund sites.
Chief Sustainability Officers
Communicate and coordinate with management, shareholders, customers, and employees to address sustainability issues. Enact or oversee a corporate sustainability strategy.
Clinical Research Coordinators
Plan, direct, or coordinate clinical research projects. Direct the activities of workers engaged in clinical research projects to ensure compliance with protocols and overall clinical objectives. May evaluate and analyze clinical data.
Emergency Management Directors
Plan and direct disaster response or crisis management activities, provide disaster preparedness training, and prepare emergency plans and procedures for natural (e.g., hurricanes, floods, earthquakes), wartime, or technological (e.g., nuclear power plant emergencies or hazardous materials spills) disasters or hostage situations.
Similar: Federal Agency Director
Farmers, Ranchers, and Other Agricultural Managers
Plan, direct, or coordinate the management or operation of farms, ranches, greenhouses, aquacultural operations, nurseries, timber tracts, or other agricultural establishments. May hire, train, and supervise farm workers or contract for services to carry out the day-to-day activities of the managed operation.
Geothermal Production Managers
Manage operations at geothermal power generation facilities. Maintain and monitor geothermal plant equipment for efficient and safe plant operations.
Similar: Hydroelectric Production Managers
Natural Sciences Managers
Plan, direct, or coordinate activities in such fields as life sciences, physical sciences, mathematics, statistics, and research and development in these fields.
Wind Energy Development Managers
Lead or manage the development and evaluation of potential wind energy business opportunities, including environmental studies, permitting, and proposals. May also manage construction of projects.
Similar: Wind Energy Operations Managers
Personal Care and Service Occupations
Physical and Social Science Occupations
Anthropologists and Archeologists
Study the origin, development, and behavior of human beings. May study the way of life, language, or physical characteristics of people in various parts of the world.
Atmospheric and Space Scientists
Investigate atmospheric phenomena and interpret meteorological data, gathered by surface and air stations, satellites, and radar to prepare reports and forecasts for public and other uses. Includes weather analysts and forecasters whose functions require the detailed knowledge of meteorology.
Biochemists and Biophysicists
Study the chemical composition or physical principles of living cells and organisms, their electrical and mechanical energy, and related phenomena. May conduct research to further understanding of the complex chemical combinations and reactions involved in metabolism, reproduction, growth, and heredity.
Research or study basic principles of plant and animal life, such as origin, relationship, development, anatomy, and functions.
Similar: Bioinformatics Scientists; Biological Technicians video; Evolutionary Biologists; Marine Biologists; Molecular and Cellular Biologists; Sociobiologists
Conduct qualitative and quantitative chemical analyses or experiments in laboratories for quality or process control or to develop new products or knowledge.
Manage, improve, and protect natural resources to maximize their use without damaging the environment. May conduct soil surveys and develop plans to eliminate soil erosion or to protect rangelands.
Environmental Scientists and Specialists
Conduct research or perform investigation for the purpose of identifying, abating, or eliminating sources of pollutants or hazards that affect either the environment or public health.
Similar: Climate Change Policy Analysts; Ecologists; Environmental Compliance Inspectors; Environmental Economists; Environmental Engineers video; Environmental Engineering Technologists and Technicians video; Environmental Planner; Environmental Restoration Planners; Environmental Science and Protection Technicians video; Industrial Ecologists; Sustainable development consultant
Investigate and describe the determinants and distribution of disease, disability, or health outcomes. May develop the means for prevention and control.
Food Scientists and Technologists
Use chemistry, microbiology, engineering, and other sciences to study the principles underlying the processing and deterioration of foods; analyze food content to determine levels of vitamins, fat, sugar, and protein; discover new food sources; research ways to make processed foods safe, palatable, and healthful…
Similar: Agricultural and Food Science Technicians video; Animal Scientists; Soil and Plant Scientists
Manage public and private forested lands for economic, recreational, and conservation purposes. May inventory the type, amount, and location of standing timber, appraise the timber’s worth, negotiate the purchase, and draw up contracts for procurement.
Similar: Botanists; Forest and Conservation Technicians
Study the nature and use of areas of the Earth’s surface, relating and interpreting interactions of physical and cultural phenomena. Conduct research on physical aspects of a region, including land forms, climates, soils, plants, and animals, and conduct research on the spatial implications of human activities within a given area.
Research and study the inheritance of traits at the molecular, organism or population level. May evaluate or treat patients with genetic disorders.
Study the composition, structure, and other physical aspects of the Earth. May use geological, physics, and mathematics knowledge in exploration for oil, gas, minerals, or underground water; or in waste disposal, land reclamation, or other environmental problems.
Research the distribution, circulation, and physical properties of underground and surface waters; and study the form and intensity of precipitation and its rate of infiltration into the soil, movement through the earth, and return to the ocean and atmosphere.
Conduct research dealing with the understanding of human diseases and the improvement of human health. Engage in clinical investigation, research and development, or other related activities.
Similar: Pharmacologists; Public Health Scientists
Investigate the growth, structure, development, and other characteristics of microscopic organisms, such as bacteria, algae, or fungi. Includes medical microbiologists who study the relationship between organisms and disease or the effects of antibiotics on microorganisms.
Neuropsychologists and Clinical Neuropsychologists
Assess and diagnose patients with neurobehavioral problems related to acquired or developmental disorders of the nervous system, such as neurodegenerative disorders, traumatic brain injury, seizure disorders, and learning disabilities. Recommend treatment after diagnosis, such as therapy, medication, or surgery.
Plan, develop, and conduct programs to inform public of historical, natural, and scientific features of national, state, or local park.
Similar: Outward bound guide
Conduct research into physical phenomena, develop theories on the basis of observation and experiments, and devise methods to apply physical laws and theories.
Zoologists and Wildlife Biologists
Study the origins, behavior, diseases, genetics, and life processes of animals and wildlife. May specialize in wildlife research and management.
Biofuels Processing Technicians
Calculate, measure, load, mix, and process refined feedstock with additives in fermentation or reaction process vessels and monitor production process. Perform, and keep records of, plant maintenance, repairs, and safety inspections.
Similar: Biofuels/Biodiesel Technology and Product Development Managers video; Biomass Plant Technicians; Gas Plant Operators video; Hydroelectric Plant Technicians; Nuclear Power Reactor Operators; Petroleum Engineers video; Petroleum Pump System Operators; Refinery Operators, and Gaugers; Power Distributors and Dispatchers; Power Plant Operators
Chemical Equipment Operators and Tenders
Operate or tend equipment to control chemical changes or reactions in the processing of industrial or consumer products. Equipment used includes devulcanizers, steam-jacketed kettles, and reactor vessels.
Water and Wastewater Treatment Plant and System Operators
Operate or control an entire process or system of machines, often through the use of control boards, to transfer or treat water or wastewater.
Protective Services Occupations
Control and extinguish fires or respond to emergency situations where life, property, or the environment is at risk. Duties may include fire prevention, emergency medical service, hazardous material response, search and rescue, and disaster assistance.
Similar: Fire Inspectors and Investigators video; First-Line Supervisors of Firefighting and Prevention Workers; Forest Fire Inspectors and Prevention Specialists; Search and Rescue Workers
Fish and Game Wardens
Patrol assigned area to prevent fish and game law violations. Investigate reports of damage to crops or property by wildlife. Compile biological data.
Recycling and Reclamation Workers
Prepare and sort materials or products for recycling. Identify and remove hazardous substances. Dismantle components of products such as appliances.
Similar: Recycling Coordinators
Sources: From "O*NET OnLine" by the National Center for O*NET Development. Used under the CC BY 4.0 license. And, Bureau of Labor Statistics.
#Natural science topics #Natural sciences #Natural sciences professions #science professions #Natural world
Sources: From "O*NET OnLine" by the National Center for O*NET Development. Used under the CC BY 4.0 license. And, Bureau of Labor Statistics.