There are currently an estimated 7,600 archaeologists in the United States. The archaeologist job market is expected to grow by 3.9% between 2016 and 2026.

How employable are archaeologists?

CareerExplorer rates archaeologists with a F employability rating, meaning this career should provide poor employment opportunities for the foreseeable future. Over the next 10 years, it is expected the US will need 6,400 archaeologists. That number is based on 300 additional archaeologists, and the retirement of 6,100 existing archaeologists.

Are archaeologists in demand?

The job outlook for archaeologists is always partially dependent on allocation of research funds to public institutions by federal and state governments. Applicants to this small occupation who are unable to secure a coveted research role typically find work as archivists, curators, or laboratory or fieldwork assistants. Those who possess a graduate degree may become university professors. Some job seekers are hired to monitor construction projects, ensuring that builders comply with federal regulations on the preservation and handling of archaeological and historical artifacts. Others find positions with cultural resource management (CRM) firms. In all cases, a large number of qualified applicants are expected to compete for relatively few positions. Demand will be greatest for candidates with experience in both qualitative and quantitative research methods and who can communicate findings to diverse audiences. Foreign language skills are also considered valuable assets in this field. This occupation’s small size and intense competition levels mean that archaeology students should vigorously pursue internships during the course of their education to better their job prospects. Advancement in the profession depends primarily on the research journals an archaeologist publishes. Transitional opportunities for these professionals may exist as market and survey researchers, engineers, urban and regional planners, and statisticians.

What’s the supply of archaeologists?

The archaeologist industry is concentrated in California, Arizona, New Mexico

Archaeologist job market by state

State Name Employed Archaeologists
California 1,290
Arizona 410
New Mexico 400
Oregon 310
Texas 280
Florida 230
Washington 210
Colorado 210
Hawaii 160
Virginia 140
Missouri 130
Maryland 120
Utah 120
Ohio 120
Nevada 110
Alaska 100
Illinois 100
Louisiana 100
North Carolina 100
Kentucky 90
Georgia 90
Tennessee 80
Wyoming 80
Alabama 70
Montana 60
North Dakota 60
Indiana 60
Idaho 60
South Carolina 50
Pennsylvania 50
District of Columbia 50
Nebraska 40
Minnesota 40
New York 40
Oklahoma 30
Massachusetts 30
Arkansas 30