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Soil and Plant Scientists

Conduct research in breeding, physiology, production, yield, and management of crops and agricultural plants or trees, shrubs, and nursery stock, their growth in soils, and control of pests; or study the chemical, physical, biological, and mineralogical composition of soils as they relate to plant or crop growth. May classify and map soils and investigate effects of alternative practices on soil and crop productivity.

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    Work Activities

    Work Activities

    • 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.
    • Identify degraded or contaminated soils and develop plans to improve their chemical, biological, or physical characteristics.
    • Develop improved measurement techniques, soil conservation methods, soil sampling devices, or related technology.
    • Develop ways of altering soils to suit different types of plants.
    • Develop methods of conserving or managing soil that can be applied by farmers or forestry companies.
    • Study insect distribution or habitat and recommend methods to prevent importation or spread of injurious species.
    • Study ways to improve agricultural sustainability, such as the use of new methods of composting.
    • Plan or supervise waste management programs for composting or farming.
    • Plan or supervise land conservation or reclamation programs for industrial development projects.
    • Perform chemical analyses of the microorganism content of soils to determine microbial reactions or chemical mineralogical relationships to plant growth.
    • Identify or classify species of insects or allied forms, such as mites or spiders.
    • Plan or supervise waste management programs for composting or farming.
    • Investigate responses of soils to specific management practices to determine the use capabilities of soils and the effects of alternative practices on soil productivity.
    • Survey undisturbed or disturbed lands for classification, inventory, mapping, environmental impact assessments, environmental protection planning, conservation planning, or reclamation planning.
    • 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.
    • Investigate soil problems or poor water quality to determine sources and effects.
    • Conduct experiments to investigate the underlying mechanisms of plant growth and response to the environment.
    • Consult with engineers or other technical personnel working on construction projects about the effects of soil problems and possible solutions to these problems.
    • Conduct experiments regarding causes of bee diseases or factors affecting yields of nectar or pollen.
    • Research technical requirements or environmental impacts of urban green spaces, such as green roof installations.
    • Plan or supervise land conservation or reclamation programs for industrial development projects.
    • Conduct research into the use of plant species as green fuels or in the production of green fuels.
    • Conduct research to determine best methods of planting, spraying, cultivating, harvesting, storing, processing, or transporting horticultural products.
    • Communicate research or project results to other professionals or the public or teach related courses, seminars, or workshops.
    • Conduct experiments to investigate the underlying mechanisms of plant growth and response to the environment.
    • Develop new or improved methods or products for controlling or eliminating weeds, crop diseases, or insect pests.
    • Provide advice regarding the development of regulatory standards for land reclamation or soil conservation.
    • Study insect distribution or habitat and recommend methods to prevent importation or spread of injurious species.
    • Study soil characteristics to classify soils on the basis of factors such as geographic location, landscape position, or soil properties.
    • Conduct experiments investigating how soil forms, changes, or interacts with land-based ecosystems or living organisms.
    • Develop environmentally safe methods or products for controlling or eliminating weeds, crop diseases, or pests.

    Skills

    • Operations Analysis

      Figuring out what a product or service needs to be able to do.

    • Monitoring

      Keeping track of how well people and/or groups are doing in order to make improvements.

    • Instructing

      Teaching people how to do something.

    • Equipment Maintenance

      Planning and doing the basic maintenance on equipment.

    • Social Perceptiveness

      Understanding people's reactions.

    • Installation

      Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or computer programs.

    • Systems Evaluation

      Measuring how well a system is working and how to improve it.

    • Troubleshooting

      Figuring out what is causing equipment, machines, wiring, or computer programs to not work.

    • Repairing

      Repairing machines or systems using the right tools.

    • Speaking

      Talking to others.

    • Critical Thinking

      Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.

    • Operations Monitoring

      Watching gauges, dials, or display screens to make sure a machine is working.

    • Service Orientation

      Looking for ways to help people.

    • Reading Comprehension

      Reading work-related information.

    • Coordination

      Changing what is done based on other people's actions.

    • Learning Strategies

      Using the best training or teaching strategies for learning new things.

    • Negotiation

      Bringing people together to solve differences.

    • Judgment and Decision Making

      Thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one.

    • Management of Material Resources

      Managing equipment and materials.

    • Mathematics

      Using math to solve problems.

    • Time Management

      Managing your time and the time of other people.

    • Writing

      Writing things for co-workers or customers.

    • Persuasion

      Talking people into changing their minds or their behavior.

    • Complex Problem Solving

      Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.

    • Programming

      Writing computer programs.

    • Technology Design

      Making equipment and technology useful for customers.

    • Operation and Control

      Using equipment or systems.

    • Equipment Selection

      Deciding what kind of tools and equipment are needed to do a job.

    • Systems Analysis

      Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in the future will affect it.

    • Quality Control Analysis

      Testing how well a product or service works.

    • Management of Personnel Resources

      Selecting and managing the best workers for a job.

    • Active Listening

      Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.

    • Active Learning

      Figuring out how to use new ideas or things.

    • Management of Financial Resources

      Making spending decisions and keeping track of what is spent.

    • Science

      Using scientific rules and strategies to solve problems.

    WorkKeys®

    Applied Math
    5
    Workplace Documents
    5
    Graphic Literacy
    5

    Abilities

    • Finger Dexterity

      Putting together small parts with your fingers.

    • Manual Dexterity

      Holding or moving items with your hands.

    • Written Comprehension

      Reading and understanding what is written.

    • Problem Sensitivity

      Noticing when problems happen.

    • Deductive Reasoning

      Using rules to solve problems.

    • Mathematical Reasoning

      Choosing the right type of math to solve a problem.

    • Visualization

      Imagining how something will look after it is moved around or changed.

    • Sound Localization

      Noticing the direction that a sound came from.

    • Speed of Closure

      Quickly knowing what you are looking at.

    • Perceptual Speed

      Quickly comparing groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.

    • Category Flexibility

      Grouping things in different ways.

    • Near Vision

      Seeing details up close.

    • Oral Comprehension

      Listening and understanding what people say.

    • Stamina

      Exercising for a long time without getting out of breath.

    • Visual Color Discrimination

      Noticing the difference between colors, including shades and brightness.

    • Depth Perception

      Deciding which thing is closer or farther away from you, or deciding how far away it is from you.

    • Rate Control

      Changing when and how fast you move based on how something else is moving.

    • Spatial Orientation

      Knowing where things are around you.

    • Multilimb Coordination

      Using your arms and/or legs together while sitting, standing, or lying down.

    • Auditory Attention

      Paying attention to one sound while there are other distracting sounds.

    • Speech Recognition

      Recognizing spoken words.

    • Number Facility

      Adding, subtracting, multiplying, or dividing.

    • Selective Attention

      Paying attention to something without being distracted.

    • Flexibility of Closure

      Seeing hidden patterns.

    • Wrist-Finger Speed

      Making fast, simple, repeated movements of your fingers, hands, and wrists.

    • Written Expression

      Communicating by writing.

    • Originality

      Creating new and original ideas.

    • Inductive Reasoning

      Making general rules or coming up with answers from lots of detailed information.

    • Information Ordering

      Ordering or arranging things.

    • Dynamic Flexibility

      Quickly and repeatedly bending, stretching, twisting, or reaching out with your body, arms, and/or legs.

    • Oral Expression

      Communicating by speaking.

    • Explosive Strength

      Jumping, sprinting, or throwing something.

    • Far Vision

      Seeing details that are far away.

    • Gross Body Equilibrium

      Keeping your balance or staying upright.

    • Arm-Hand Steadiness

      Keeping your arm or hand steady.

    • Reaction Time

      Quickly moving your hand, finger, or foot based on a sound, light, picture or other command.

    • Memorization

      Remembering words, numbers, pictures, or steps.

    • Time Sharing

      Doing two or more things at the same time.

    • Response Orientation

      Quickly deciding if you should move your hand, foot, or other body part.

    • Trunk Strength

      Using your lower back and stomach.

    • Night Vision

      Seeing at night or under low light.

    • Glare Sensitivity

      Seeing something even if there is a glare or very bright light.

    • Fluency of Ideas

      Coming up with lots of ideas.

    • Gross Body Coordination

      Moving your arms, legs, and mid-section together while your whole body is moving.

    • Peripheral Vision

      Seeing something to your side when your are looking ahead.

    • Hearing Sensitivity

      Telling the difference between sounds.

    • Dynamic Strength

      Exercising for a long time without your muscles getting tired.

    • Extent Flexibility

      Bending, stretching, twisting, or reaching with your body, arms, and/or legs.

    • Speech Clarity

      Speaking clearly.

    • Speed of Limb Movement

      Quickly moving your arms and legs.

    • Static Strength

      Lifting, pushing, pulling, or carrying.

    • Control Precision

      Quickly changing the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat.

    Knowledge

    • Biology

      Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.

    • Sociology and Anthropology

      Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures, and their history and origins.

    • Geography

      Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.

    • Therapy and Counseling

      Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.

    • 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.

    • Mechanical

      Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

    • 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.

    • Computers and Electronics

      Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

    • Sales and Marketing

      Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.

    • 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.

    • 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.

    • Law and Government

      Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.

    • Telecommunications

      Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.

    • History and Archeology

      Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.

    • Design

      Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

    • Personnel and Human Resources

      Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.

    • English Language

      Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

    • Public Safety and Security

      Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

    • Philosophy and Theology

      Knowledge of different philosophical systems and religions. This includes their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and their impact on human culture.

    • Food Production

      Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.

    • Building and Construction

      Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.

    • Economics and Accounting

      Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking, and the analysis and reporting of financial data.

    • Psychology

      Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.

    • Medicine and Dentistry

      Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.

    • Fine Arts

      Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

    • Communications and Media

      Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media.

    • Foreign Language

      Knowledge of the structure and content of a foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.

    • Transportation

      Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.

    • Production and Processing

      Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

    • Administrative

      Knowledge of administrative and office procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and workplace terminology.

    • 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.

    Career Video

    Additional videos and more information available on CareerOneStop

    Pay

    • Ohio Annual Salary 61620/yr
    • Typical Salary
    • Ohio Hourly Wage 29.63/hr
    • Typical Hourly Wage

    Ohio Employment Trends

    • Currently Employed 410
    • Yearly Projected Openings 40

    Typical Education

    Personality

    Investigative: People interested in this work like activities that include ideas, thinking, and figuring things out.They do well at jobs that need:
    • Integrity
    • Analytical Thinking
    • Attention to Detail
    • Dependability
    • Persistence
    • Cooperation

    Tools

    • Atomic absorption AA spectrometers
    • Augers
    • Autosamplers
    • Benchtop centrifuges
    • Circulating baths
    • Colorimeters
    • Conductivity meters
    • Desktop computers
    • Digital cameras
    • Drying cabinets or ovens
    • Electron microscopes
    • Fluorescent microscopes
    • Gel documentation systems
    • Gel dryers
    • Global positioning system GPS receiver
    • Handheld thermometer
    • Hydrometers
    • Inductively coupled plasma ICP spectrometers
    • Infra red or ultra violet absorption analyzers
    • Infrared imagers
    • Ion chromatographs
    • Laboratory balances
    • Laboratory beakers
    • Laboratory box furnaces
    • Laboratory flasks
    • Laboratory graduated cylinders
    • Laboratory mills
    • Laboratory mixers
    • Laminar flow cabinets or stations
    • Light absorption meters
    • Mass spectrometers
    • Microplate readers
    • Moisture meters
    • Multipurpose or general test tubes
    • Notebook computers
    • Orbital shaking water baths
    • Organic carbon analyzers
    • Osmometers
    • Particle size measuring apparatus
    • Permeability or porosity estimation apparatus
    • Personal computers
    • Personal digital assistant PDAs or organizers
    • Photometer
    • Polarizing microscopes
    • Portable data input terminals
    • Precipitation or evaporation recorders
    • Psychrometers
    • Radarbased surveillance systems
    • Rapid amplification or complementary deoxyribonucleic acid ends RACE technology products
    • Reciprocating shaking water baths
    • Refrigerated and heated reach in environmental or growth chambers
    • Refrigerated benchtop centrifuges
    • Sample holders
    • Soil core sampling apparatus
    • Soil testing kits
    • Spectrofluorimeters or fluorimeters
    • Spectrometers
    • Spectrophotometers
    • Tensiometers
    • Test sieves
    • Thermocouples
    • Tissue culture incubators
    • pH meters

    Technology

    • Analytical or scientific software
    • Categorization or classification software
    • Computer aided design CAD software
    • Data base user interface and query software
    • Geographic information system
    • Map creation software
    • Object or component oriented development software
    • Office suite software
    • Presentation software
    • Spreadsheet software
    • Web platform development software
    • Word processing software

    Tags

    • Apprenticeships are available for this occupation. These programs can help you get hands-on experience and build your skills.

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