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Archaeologist jobs: More than digging for bones
Archaeologist jobs: More than digging for bones © worker/Shutterstock.com
  • Median annual pay: $54,230
  • Job growth: 21 percent

Tell someone you're an archaeologist, and it may conjure up visions of people digging in deserts to uncover ancient bones. However, archaeologists also are employed whenever federal money is used for a project such as to build a new road. Before any construction can begin, the archaeological significance of a particular parcel of land must be assessed.

While jobs aren't in abundance as they are in the legal or medical fields, archaeologists are projected to have better-than-average job growth of 21 percent from 2010 to 2020, according to the BLS. In 2010, the median pay for an archaeologist was $54,230 per year, or $26.07 per hour, according to the government agency.

Archaeologists typically have a four-year degree, a master's degree and in some cases a doctorate in anthropology with a concentration in archaeology and can work on diverse jobs from surveying a pipeline being constructed to a new shopping mall being built, says Joel Irish, a professor in the anthropology department at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks.

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