Meteorologists are weather specialists, using science and algorithms to predict weather patterns and events. They track local weather, measuring things such as rain levels and wind, as well as larger weather events, such as heat waves and cyclones. They also provide advice and forecasting before and during natural disasters.
If you have a passion for science and maths, are a great problem solver, and want a job that can be unpredictable and varied, becoming a Meteorologist could be right up your alley.
Excellent problem solver
Analytical with great maths skills
Great tech skills
Adaptable and flexible
Curious and inquisitive
Can work in teams and alone
Studying the physics and dynamics of the atmosphere
Tracking developing weather systems and events
Gathering data on weather conditions and making predictions
Providing weather forecasts to the media and public
Forecasting both short- and long- term weather patterns
Deploying technology, such as radars and satellites, to obtain data
Advising governments on disaster prevention and preparedness
Researching larger climate events, such as climate change
Studying old meteorological data to find trends and patterns
Lifestyle Impact: Low
Part Time opportunities: Low – around 20% of Meteorologists work part-time (source: labourmarketinsights.gov.au).
Average hours for full-time workers: 42 hours a week, which is average (source: labourmarketinsights.gov.au).
Meteorologists’ salary (average) $70,000* per year (source: seek.com.au). *Salaries vary depending on your skills and experience.
Future career growth: Very strong (source: labourmarketinsights.gov.au).
You will be doing most of your work indoors, in offices and on computers. There might be some opportunity to do field work.
Around a third of workers reported that they regularly work overtime or extra hours (source: labourmarketinsights.gov.au). You might need to be doing work on-demand during natural disasters, no matter the time of day.
Meteorologists are most in demand in these locations:
This is a small occupation, with only around 680 people working as Meteorologists in Australia in 2016 (source: labourmarketinsights.gov.au). Demand for Meteorologists is highest in Victoria, Tasmania, the Northern Territory, and the ACT. Most Meteorologists work in the Professional, Scientific and Technical Services industry.
How to become a Meteorologist in Australia
To work as a Meteorologist, you will need at minimum an undergraduate qualification in Science, Physics, or Meteorology.
Step 1 – Complete Year 12 with a focus on English, Maths, and Physics.
Step 2 – Complete a relevant undergraduate degree. Some examples include:
Bachelor of Science, majoring in Physics or Atmospheric Science
Bachelor of Mathematics
Step 3 – Consider upskilling with a postgraduate qualification, such as a Graduate Diploma in Meteorology.
Step 4 – Find work as a Meteorologist.
Step 5 – Continue building on your skills throughout your career.
Find out more here –
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What do Meteorologists do?
Meteorologists are responsible for predicting and tracking weather events and systems of all kinds, including rain and thunderstorms, cyclones, tornadoes, fires, extreme winds, and more.
What options are there for career progression?
You will probably start out as a Junior Meteorologist, working under the supervision and guidance of more experienced workers, before working your way up into senior roles. Eventually you might like to move into roles in research, or even education.
Do I need to go to university to become a Meteorologist?
Yes, you will most likely need a university-level qualification to find work as a Meteorologist in Australia.
Where do Meteorologists work?
Meteorologists can work in a variety of different settings, including for government agencies, not-for-profit companies, science and research labs, and even in some private settings. They can also work in more community-focused roles, educating the public on disaster preparedness.
What are 3 things I can do right now to help me become a Meteorologist?
If you’re in high school and you’d like to find out if a career as a Meteorologist is right for you, here’s a few things you could do right now:
Consider taking short courses and workshops in Meteorology, such as the Introduction to Meteorology from the BoM.
See if you can find work experience in a science- or weather-related setting. This will help you see if you might enjoy the work, and can help you start building important contacts for the future.
Talk to a Meteorologist to see what a day in their life is like. If you don’t know anyone, see if you can watch videos or documentaries about a career in science or weather.