Careers in the Licensed Professions

Land Surveyor

Land Surveyor Print Profile PDF

A land surveyor applies mathematics, technical, and research skills to measure and plot: (1) the dimensions of any portion of the earth's surface (including natural and other structures), (2) the lengths and directions of boundary lines, and (3) the contour of the earth's surface. Examples of services:

  • map an area’s physical features (topographic surveys) and bodies of water (hydrographic surveys)
  • plot construction layouts for buildings and roads
  • perform boundary surveys to verify that a house, additions, and visible water and sewerage systems are located as described in the deed;
  • lay out the individual building lots in a subdivision


“Credits” toward a land surveyor's license are based on your education and experience. You will need 8 years of combined education and experience for licensure. An Associate's is the minimum degree required; however, advanced degrees will require less experience. Visit the Office of the Professions for a listing of all options and requirements.


NCEES Fundamentals of Surveying and Principles of Surveying exams and New York State Specific Land Surveying exam





Salary and Projected Growth

  • Median salary: $62,580 in the U.S., $71,310 in NY
  • Salary range: $49,230-$93,910
  • Projected growth: faster than average, below average in NY

Where Could I Work?

  • Architecture and Engineering firms
  • Construction
  • Government
  • Self-employed
  • Mining

Your Interests and Abilities

  • Math
  • Technology
  • Data analysis
  • Ability to complete fieldwork
  • Manual and technical skills

Professional Skills

  • Analytical thinking
  • Problem solving
  • Attention to detail
  • Dependability

What Interests You?

Match your interests and personality to career options! Explore a free career tool at

Tip: try searching for mentoring programs—talk to a land surveyor about what they do and how they got started!

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Last Updated: January 13, 2020