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Forensic Anthropologist Salary

Forensic Anthropologist Salary

Do you intend to pursue a career in forensic anthropology, and would like to know the average pay-package? Then, continue reading this Buzzle article that provides brief information regarding the same...
CareerStint Staff
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the career outlook for the field of anthropology (and archaeology) is expected to grow by about 19% between 2012 and 2022. As it is a small occupation, the jobs in this field could be highly competitive in the future.

Forensic anthropology is a specialty in the field of anthropology. It is a field that deals with application of laws of physical anthropology for legal processes. A forensic anthropologist is basically a professional who studies the skeletons, badly decomposed bodies, or any other human remains, and helps in identification of an individual. In other words, he helps in identification of an individual whose remains are either burned or decomposed, thereby helping in legal processes as well as for humanitarian reasons.

Salary Range
There are too many factors that decide the annual salary of a forensic anthropologist, which include, location of job, type of employer, educational qualification, and work experience.

➺According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary of anthropologists and archeologists was $57,420 in May 2012.

➺The BLS data shows that the lowest 10% earned less than $33,330, while the top 10% earned more than $91,140.

➺According to the job portal Simply Hired, the average salary for forensic anthropologist jobs is $80,000.

➺A forensic anthropologist with a work experience of less than one year can earn $33,000 to $45,000 per year, while one with 10 years of work experience can earn more than $70,000. On the other hand, one with a work experience of 1 to 4 years earns anywhere between $33,500 to $58,000. And a work experience of 5 to 9 years can offer a salary range of $34,500 to $68,000.

➺Forensic anthropologists can work in state and federal government, research and consulting firms, museums, and various other businesses. According to the BLS data, the top three industries employing anthropologists and the annual average salaries offered by them were as follows:
  • Federal government: $72K
  • Research and development in the social sciences and humanities: $52K
  • Management, scientific, and technical consulting services: $51.5K
➺According to Indeed, the average annual salary of a forensic anthropologist working in New York is $68,000, while the salary of the person working in Washington is $58,000 (as of June 2015). Thus, the salary varies significantly according to the location of the firm or company.

➺Various surveys show that a fresher with a Bachelor's degree in Anthropology would earn less than the fresher with a Master's degree. The one with a Ph.D. would obviously get the highest salary.

Job Description
The career of a forensic anthropologist demands extensive study and research. The basic requirements include a Bachelor's degree in anthropology, followed by a Master's degree and/or a Ph.D in anthropology. Thus, a student requires almost 10 years to complete the educational requirements for the job. After that, he has to undergo special lab training, under the guidance of law enforcement agencies and crime laboratories. He needs to study the skeleton or human remains, and find out the cause of death, sex, and age at the time of death of the individual. He also has to work in conjunction with other professionals like pathologists, odontologists, and homicide investigators. Those employed in universities or educational sector need to guide the students of forensic anthropology by arranging various workshops related to law enforcement.

Once the person qualifies in all the educational and training requirements, he can choose the field of his interest. However, those who specialize in forensics, have complex responsibilities. They require vast experience to do their jobs well. Experienced forensic anthropologists can work for military forces, private legal agencies, or for universities. They can work as consultants as well. Those who work for law enforcement agencies have to report their studies and analysis to the police, detectives, or lawyers.

Thus, the job of a forensic anthropologist is demanding and equally challenging. You need to perform well on both the theoretical and practical platforms. When you perform well, you earn hefty recognition and remuneration, all at once. Striving for a good position and escalating on the career graph is what your aim should be, in order to become successful.

It is a very challenging profession, and has good career opportunities, provided a student acquires all the higher educational degrees, and obtains excellent basic training. Make a note that the aforementioned figures, related to the salary, are approximate, and may vary according to geographical location and circumstances. So, if you wish to make a career as a forensic anthropologist, make sure you conduct a good research of all the requirements and job outlook of the respective field. Working in this field can be a very rewarding experience intellectually, emotionally, and financially. Good Luck!