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Degree Overview: Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree in Land Surveying

Majors Overview July 31, 2014

Receive information about a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree program in Land Surveying and their education requirements, coursework, career choices, job and wage outlook, and continuing education choices.

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree Program in Land Surveying

Students enrolled in Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Land Surveying programs gain a broad overview of the methods of spatial organization and connection of environmental and physical landforms. Coursework within these 4-years degree programs is devised to impart students with a strong grasp of the geographical workings underlying land formations and about the use of technological systems in charting and mapping them out.

Land surveyors often use their skills in drawing up areas of land for the construction of numerous structures such as parks, highways and buildings. They also use their skills in resolving border disputes between individuals, businesses and towns. Students gain practical and theoretical knowledge of the techniques of construction surveys, boundary lines, topography, and field measurement. They often spend field time to learn how to employ modern mapping tools, such as remote sensing, electronic distance meters and Global Positioning Systems (GPS).

Education Requirements

Four-year universities and colleges are among those that offer bachelor’s degree programs in land surveying; admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a GED certificate or high school diploma. Before they can choose land surveying as a major, students are expected to complete general education coursework in physical sciences, communication, geography, and college-level mathematics.


Coursework in a land surveying degree program is devised to impart students an educational base in geographical land formations, in addition to a technical grasp of the mapping of those formations. Core coursework may include topic areas such as:

•Surveying adjusting
•Road and traffic design
•Legal aspects of land surveying
•Geodetic surveying methods
•Geographic information systems
•Land surveying field work
•Land development and design
•Applied fluid mechanics

Career Choices

Those who complete bachelor’s degree programs in land surveying can choose from an array of entry-level career options such as:

•Surveying technician
•Marine surveyor
•Geodetic surveyor
•Urban planner
•Land surveyor
•Mapping technician
•Hydrographic surveyor

Job and Wage Outlook

A job growth rate of 10% has been predicted for surveyors, over the 2012 – 2022 decade (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). In May 2012, these professionals brought home an average annual wage of $56,230.

Continuing Education Choices

Those who graduate from the bachelor’s degree program in land surveying may seek research or leadership positions in the surveying industry by choosing to pursue a 2-year master’s degree in a particular area of the field, such as geographic information systems, engineering, computer science, forestry, surveying, geography, or cartography. Licensure is mandatory for all surveyors. Passage of the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES)’s exam would qualify interested individuals to apply to their state licensing board.

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