How to become a Meteorologist (2022)

How to become a Meteorologist (1)

Meteorologists forecast the weather and study the atmosphere to improve the understanding of climate.

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  • The Job
  • The Facts
  • Related Courses

Personal requirements for a Meteorologist

  • Enjoy and have aptitude for science (especially physics) and mathematics
  • Flexible and resourceful
  • Interested in the provision of meteorological services to the community

Education & Training for a Meteorologist

To become a meteorologist you usually have to study atmospheric science, mathematical and computer sciences, mathematics and statistics, ocean and climate sciences or physics at university. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your Senior Secondary Certificate of Education. Prerequisite subjects, or assumed knowledge, in one or more of English, mathematics, chemistry, biology, earth and environmental science, and physics are normally required. Universities have different prerequisites and some have flexible entry requirements or offer external study. Contact the institutions you are interested in for more information.

Additional information

Successful applicants with the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) must complete a nine-month specialised training program at the BOM Training Centre in Melbourne before being posted to one of the regional or field offices throughout Australia. Once they have completed their training, graduates receive a Graduate Diploma in Meteorology.Australian citizenship, or the eligibility to apply for Australian citizenship, is required for employment with BOM.

Duties & Tasks of a Meteorologist

Meteorologists:

  • Use and develop scientific techniques to forecast and interpret atmospheric conditions
  • Analyse and interpret surface, upper-level and other measurements (including satellite images and other remote sensing data about atmospheric conditions)
  • Prepare weather forecasts for the public as well as specific users such as aviation, marine, defence and emergency services
  • Issue warnings for cyclones, storms, gales, floods, frosts and fire danger
  • Study climate and identify climatic change
  • Work with physicists and engineers to develop observation equipment and distribute information on topics such as air pollution
  • Supervise and coordinate the work of other meteorologists, technical officers and meteorological observers
  • Carry out weather studies for particular clients.

Tasks

  • Studies climatic conditions by analysing meteorological observations made over extended periods of time, and investigates past and possible future fluctuations in climate..
  • Investigates the nature of solar and terrestrial (infra-red) radiations and effects on the atmosphere..
  • May specialise in a particular area of meteorological science..
  • Studies composition, structure and dynamics of the atmosphere, investigating the direction and speed of air movements, air pressure and temperature, humidity and other phenomena..
  • Studies physical nature and properties of solid and liquid particles suspended in the atmosphere, investigating them as the process of cloud formation, precipitation and electrical disturbances..
  • Studies data on atmospheric conditions obtained to prepare weather maps and forecasts for advice to aviation, shipping, agriculture and the general public..
  • Employs balloons, rockets and artificial earth satellites and such techniques as spectroscopy, hygrometry, daylight and infra-red photography, radar and radio to obtain data on atmospheric conditions, and directs processing of the data..

Working conditions for a Meteorologist

Meteorologists in forecasting positions usually work in shifts. Operational meteorologists may work in field station locations throughout Australia and its territories, from the tropics to Antarctica. Others are involved in policy development, administration and training.

Employment Opportunities for a Meteorologist

The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) is the major employer of meteorologists. A few positions are occasionally available in private companies, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), universities and state or territory government bodies (mainly environmental agencies).Most meteorologists are employed in capital cities, but some are employed at major airports and Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) bases outside capital cities and further afield (Antarctica, for meteorological consultants and practitioners who provide a private consultancy service to engineers and architects.Competition for the few positions offered each year is very strong. Holding a higher degree qualification may be an advantage. Those who successfully complete BOM's training course are employed in the bureau's head office in Melbourne or in a capital city regional forecasting centre. Subsequent promotion is based on ability and on positions becoming available. Vacancies are usually advertised on the BOM website, online job websites and through universities during March and April for training courses that commence in late January/February.

Specializations

Hydrometeorologist

A hydrometeorologist provides information about rainfall patterns and intensity in support of the planning and management of land and water resources, as well as the design of urban drainage systems and dams.

Climatologist

A climatologist monitors and studies the climate and the factors that control its variability. A climatologist may produce climate assessments and forecasts of seasonal conditions, or contribute to national and international assessments of climate variability and climate change. Climatologists may also provide relevant climate data to users such as the insurance industry.

(Video) What It Takes To Become A Meteorologist

Meteorological Consultant

A meteorological consultant provides advice and conducts investigations involving the application of meteorology to fields such as agriculture, engineering, architecture, health, tourism, urban planning and design.

Research Meteorologist

A research meteorologist develops and tests theories and concepts, applying the laws of physics to the study of the atmosphere with the aim of improving forecasts and warnings. This includes the analysis of meteorological data and running of forecast and global climate models.

Meteorologist

Meteorologists forecast the weather and study the atmosphere to improve the understanding of climate.

  • How to become a Meteorologist (2)
    Average age
    42 years
  • How to become a Meteorologist (3)
    Future Growth
    Very strong
  • How to become a Meteorologist (4)
    Gender Share
    30% female
  • How to become a Meteorologist (5)
    Average full-time
    42 hours
  • How to become a Meteorologist (6)
    Weekly Pay
    $2,094
  • How to become a Meteorologist (7)
    Skill level rating
    Very high skill
  • How to become a Meteorologist (8)
    Unemployment
    Lower unemployment
  • How to become a Meteorologist (9)
    Full-Time Share
    80% Full-Time
  • How to become a Meteorologist (10)
    Employment Size
    680 workers
  • How to become a Meteorologist (11)
    Employment by state ACT: 3.8%
    NSW: 18.1%
    NT: 3.8%
    QLD: 11.4%
    SA: 5.2%
    TAS: 6.8%
    VIC: 42.1%
    WA: 8.8%
  • How to become a Meteorologist (12)
    Age brackets 15-19: 0%
    20-24: 3%
    25-34: 25.3%
    35-44: 28.4%
    45-54: 25.9%
    55-59: 8.5%
    60-64: 3.9%
    65 and Over: 4.9%
  • How to become a Meteorologist (13)

    Education level Advanced Diploma/Diploma: 3.3%
    Bachelor degree: 24.1%
    Certificate III/IV: 1.5%
    Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate: 68.2%
    Year 10 and below: 0%
    Year 11: 0%
    Year 12: 2.9%

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FAQs

How difficult is meteorology? ›

Meteorology is a tough college major. The courses are challenging, but with a little planning and dedication you can get through it. Your planning should start in high school. Meteorologists need to be good at math and science, so take all the courses that you can!

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Is there a lot of math in meteorology? ›

Meteorology is a math-based profession that requires an excellent understanding of calculus and physics. If possible, you should graduate from high school prepared to take college-level calculus classes. Computer science is also very important, learning computer programming and keyboard skills will be helpful.

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Is meteorology a stressful job? ›

Most meteorology jobs are low stress. There are certain aspects of the job that can put strain on your family and social life. If you wind up with a crazy shift at your weather station, you could be working nightshifts. Newbies are typically the fist candidates for those shifts.

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What are 5 things meteorologists do? ›

Meteorology Fields
  • Weather Forecasting and Warnings. ...
  • Atmospheric Research. ...
  • Meteorological Technology Development and Support. ...
  • Information Services. ...
  • Forensic Services. ...
  • Broadcast Meteorology.

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What makes a good meteorologist? ›

Ultimately, a top-notch meteorologist should have solid knowledge of atmospheric physics and chemistry, strong written and verbal communication skills, and be able to manage time efficiently.

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Is meteorology a good career? ›

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook is strong for atmospheric scientists, including meteorologists. Predicted to grow 8 percent from 2020 through 2030 -- faster than the average for all occupations -- a meteorologist salary could exceed $99,740 a year.

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What school has the best meteorology program? ›

See a list of colleges with Meteorology here to evaluate admissions data, tuition, rankings and more.
...
Here are the best colleges with a Meteorology Major
  • Yale University.
  • University of Chicago.
  • Johns Hopkins University.
  • University of Pennsylvania.
  • California Institute of Technology.
More items...

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What state has the best meteorology program? ›

Best Schools for Atmospheric Sciences & Meteorology in the United States
  • #1. Texas A&M University - College Station. ...
  • #2. University of Michigan - Ann Arbor. ...
  • #3. University of Wisconsin - Madison. ...
  • #4. Cornell University. ...
  • University of California - Los Angeles. Los Angeles, CA. ...
  • #6. ...
  • #7. ...
  • University of Washington - Seattle Campus.
More items...

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What type of math do meteorologists use? ›

Meteorologists also use all types of math, not just the basics. Basic computations, algebra, statistics, geometry, and calculus are all used by meteorologists.

Curious? Read On

What type of math is in meteorology? ›

Meteorology students are required to take at least three semesters of Calculus, along with other math classes. Math helps meteorologists understand how the atmosphere works. Storm Team 3 uses several different weather computer models to help create the forecast for the Coastal Empire and Lowcountry.

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What subjects do you need to study meteorology? ›

Qualifying as a meteorologist
  • You will need AS levels or higher in Physics or Maths. ...
  • You will need a 1st or 2:1 in your degree.
  • Geography graduates will usually need to do a masters in Meteorology or similar subject, or have good A-levels in Maths and Physics.
More items...

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Who is the most famous weatherman? ›

Willard Herman Scott Jr.
Willard Scott
Years active1950–2015
Notable workWeather Reporter on Today Creator and original portrayer of Ronald McDonald Joy Boys Radio Program Birthday greetings for centenarians Narrator of NASA TV programs
Spouse(s)Mary Dwyer Scott ​ ​ ( m. 1959; died 2002)​ Paris Keena ​ ​ ( m. 2014)​
6 more rows

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What are the disadvantages of being a meteorologist? ›

A disadvantage for meteorologists is the need for flexible hours and the possibility of working long hours during an emergency (Clary 1). Meteorologists also do not have time off during the holidays, nights, or weekends (“Careers as a TV Meteorologist” 4).

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Can you be a meteorologist without a degree? ›

Meteorology requires excellent computer proficiency and relevant physics, chemistry and mathematics knowledge. Aspiring meteorologists must acquire a Bachelor of Science degree in meteorology or atmospheric sciences. Many pursue a master's degree after achieving their bachelor's.

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What do meteorologists do all day? ›

Meteorologists study and predict weather and climate. They analyze the relationship between the weather and other environmental processes and observe the impact of weather and climate on people, animals, and plants.

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What do weather people study? ›

Meteorologists study the Earth's atmosphere and its interactions with the Earth's surface, the oceans and the biosphere. Their knowledge of applied mathematics and physics allows them to understand the full range of atmospheric phenomena, from snowflake formation to the Earth's general climate.

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What is the study of weather called? ›

meteorology. noun. study of weather and atmosphere.

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How do you study the weather forecast? ›

5 Easy Ways to Study Weather in the Classroom
  1. Keep a Weather Journal. Weather journals are an easy activity to study weather in the classroom. ...
  2. Make Home-Made Weather Monitoring Tools. ...
  3. Study Severe Weather Events in the Classroom. ...
  4. Integrate STEM Education. ...
  5. Get Lessons Plans from Leading Meteorologists.
31 Aug 2016

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Why do you want to be a meteorologist? ›

Help Protect Life and Property. At the heart of being a meteorologist is a spirit of public service. We provide useful information and advice to friends, family, and our communities so that they may take appropriate action to protect their own lives, the lives of loved ones, and the property.

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Why is a meteorologist job important? ›

Meteorologists are central to national efforts to promote public health and safety, from predicting outbreaks of air- and waterborne diseases, to issuing early warnings when a dangerous storm or flood threatens to harm people and damage property.

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Are meteorologists happy? ›

Meteorologists are about average in terms of happiness. At CareerExplorer, we conduct an ongoing survey with millions of people and ask them how satisfied they are with their careers. As it turns out, meteorologists rate their career happiness 3.2 out of 5 stars which puts them in the bottom 46% of careers.

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Is being a meteorologist worth it? ›

Meteorologists on average earn $92,000 a year, with job opportunities existing in government, media, consulting, and research. There's a forecasted job growth of 12% into 2026 which beats the national average of 7%.

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Is meteorology in high demand? ›

Employment of atmospheric scientists, including meteorologists is projected to grow 4 percent from 2021 to 2031, about as fast as the average for all occupations. About 700 openings for atmospheric scientists, including meteorologists are projected each year, on average, over the decade.

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What meteorologist makes the most money? ›

High Paying Meteorologist Jobs
  • Chief Meteorologist. Salary range: $50,500-$130,000 per year. ...
  • Forecaster. Salary range: $45,000-$91,000 per year. ...
  • Metrology Engineer. Salary range: $68,000-$90,000 per year. ...
  • Weather Analyst. Salary range: $46,500-$90,000 per year. ...
  • Weather Forecaster. ...
  • Marine Meteorologist.

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Is meteorology a Bachelor's degree? ›

Students who are passionate about weather have an opportunity to study all aspects of it in the Bachelor of Science in Meteorology. As part of the program, students explore and research a variety of atmospheric challenges ranging in scale from climate change to tornadoes in our world-class meteorology lab.

Get More Info Here

What do meteorologists do? ›

What is a Meteorologist? Meteorology is the science concerned with the Earth's atmosphere and its physical processes. A meteorologist is a physical scientist who observes, studies, or forecasts the weather.

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How is a meteorologist? ›

A meteorologist is an individual with specialized education who uses scientific principles to explain, understand, observe or forecast the earth's atmospheric phenomena and/or how the atmosphere affects the earth and life on the planet.

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Does Harvard have a meteorology program? ›

Meteorology | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

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What is meteorology geography? ›

Meteorology is the study of the atmosphere, atmospheric phenomena, and atmospheric effects on our weather. The atmosphere is the gaseous layer of the physical environment that surrounds a planet. Earth's atmosphere is roughly 100 to 125 kilometers (65-75 miles) thick.

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Do you have to be good at math to be a meteorologist? ›

In some respects, meteorology has become applied mathematics, so a solid background in math is essential. Young people who plan careers in meteorology should take as many math courses as possible, starting in middle school. Computer skills are just as important.

Curious? Read On

Does meteorology involve calculus? ›

Calculus is an integral part of a meteorologist's training. The ability to solve problems with calculus differentiates meteorologists from weather readers. You should know how to perform both indefinite and definite integrals. Brush up on the derivatives for variables raised to powers, logarithms, and exponentials.

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How much math do meteorologists use? ›

Dutifully processing 2.8 quadrillion mathematical calculations per second around the clock, these computers — each about the size of a school bus — are the nucleus of weather and climate forecasting in the United States and the calculations they make are the foundation of NOAA's life-saving weather predictions.

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How do meteorologists use trigonometry? ›

An example related to meteorology is spherical trigonometry, in which any location on Earth can be specified in terms of latitude, longitude and height above the Earth's surface. Our weather radars make extensive use of the principles of trigonometry to determine the location and movement of precipitation targets.

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What maths can be learned from rainfall? ›

The context also lends itself to introduce the idea of inverse functions. In that case, one could ask if given an amount of rainfall it would be possible to determine how long it has been raining.

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How are vectors used in meteorology? ›

The wind vector allows forecasters to know the speed and direction of the wind at the aircraft's location. Windspeed and direction are important in weather forecasting as they can often be used to predict changes in the weather such as the approach of an area of low pressure.

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Do you need physics for meteorology? ›

Meteorologists usually need a bachelor's degree in atmospheric science or a closely related field that's specific to atmospheric phenomena. Degrees in physics, chemistry, or geoscience may be adequate for certain positions. Aspiring meteorologists may also study: Physics.

Curious? Read On

What course is meteorologist? ›

The Diploma in Meteorology Program is two-semester program in theoretical and applied meteorology which is open to B.S. graduates of suitable standing in physics, mathematics engineering or other appropriate disciplines.

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How can a woman become a weather? ›

To become a weather forecaster, you will need a bachelor's degree, preferably in atmospheric sciences or meteorology. However, the required qualifications will vary from company to company, as some on-air forecasters simply take data compiled by meteorologists and present it in a more audience-friendly manner.

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What do meteorologists do? ›

What is a Meteorologist? Meteorology is the science concerned with the Earth's atmosphere and its physical processes. A meteorologist is a physical scientist who observes, studies, or forecasts the weather.

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What is meteorology geography? ›

Meteorology is the study of the atmosphere, atmospheric phenomena, and atmospheric effects on our weather. The atmosphere is the gaseous layer of the physical environment that surrounds a planet. Earth's atmosphere is roughly 100 to 125 kilometers (65-75 miles) thick.

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What are 3 things meteorologist do? ›

Meteorologists are observers and researchers. They note the physical conditions of the atmosphere above them, and they study maps, satellite data, and radar information. They also compare various kinds of weather data from local, regional, and global sources.

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How can I study metrology? ›

Students interested in becoming a meteorologist should take science in class 12. After, they can pursue BTech in Atmospheric Sciences or BSc in Meteorology, offered by IITs in India, the admissions to which is based on JEE Main scores.

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What is a weather person called? ›

Definition of weatherperson

: a person who reports and forecasts the weather : meteorologist.

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Who is the father of meteorology? ›

However, the man many consider to be the “Father of Meteorology” is an Englishman named Luke Howard. In the early 1800s, Luke Howard recorded detailed observations of weather in and around London. His comprehensive work laid the groundwork for the understanding of how weather works and offered suggestions as to why.

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Why is it called meteorology? ›

The term Meteorology has quite the history deriving from the Greek word meteoron, which more or less meant “something in the sky.” Around 340 BC, the famous philosopher Aristotle wrote a treatise called Meteorologica, a work covering the totality of that era's knowledge of weather and climate.

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Who invented meteorology? ›

Aristotle is considered the founder of meteorology. One of the most impressive achievements described in the Meteorology is the description of what is now known as the hydrologic cycle.

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