Geotechnical Engineers

USACE Members Use a Drill Probe to Test Soil

Geotechnical engineers research and study soil to evaluate its suitability for foundations. They investigate and assess construction sites, conduct lab tests, create designs for structures, supervise construction, and write and present reports. They work on such projects as designing tunnels, roadways, retaining walls, and earth dams, as well as helping to create strategies for the clean-up and management of contaminated sites.

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Quick Facts
Alternate Title(s) Geotechnics Engineers, Ground Engineers, Soils Engineers
Duties Evaluate soil, rock, and underground water to determine the feasibility and design specifications for construction projects
Salary Range $50,000 to $100,000+
Work Environment Indoors/Outdoors
Best Geographical Location(s) Opportunities are available throughout the country
Minimum Education Level
  • Bachelor's Degree
School Subjects
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Technical/Shop
Experience Internship, co-op, or apprenticeship
Personality Traits
  • Hands On
  • Scientific
  • Technical
  • Computer
  • Math
  • Scientific
Certification or Licensing Required
Special Requirements None
Employment Prospects Good
Advancement Prospects Good
Outlook About as Fast as the Average
Career Ladder
  • Manager, or Technical Specialist, or Professor
  • Geotechnical Engineer
  • Engineering Technician
  • Intern