Agricultural scientists advise farmers and government on improving the production of crops, livestock and forests. 

Where agricultural scientists are employed

Employers include state, territory and federal government departments and the private sector. Careers are usually in research, advisory roles, teaching, management, administration, marketing and media. Agricultural scientists may work in horticulture and with flower growers, nursery operators and commercial firms trading in horticultural products such as frozen foods, seeds and fertilizers. They may also work in the field of landscape design and in the mining industry to assist with land regeneration.

Although employment opportunities exist, overseas available positions usually require postgraduate qualifications or work experience.


Full-time agricultural scientists in South Australia generally earn more than $1,600 per week.

Graph of pay scale for Agricultural scientist

Job prospects

In 2011 there were 291 people employed full-time as agricultural engineers in South Australia compared with 239 in 2006.

How to become one

To become an agricultural scientist you usually have to complete a degree in agricultural or horticultural science or a science degree with a major in agriculture-related studies. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE). Prerequisite subjects or assumed knowledge in one or more of English, biology, chemistry, maths and physics are normally required.

A number of universities in Australia offer degrees in these areas. Universities have different prerequisites and some have flexible entry requirements or offer external study.

For information on course admission requirements and how to apply to the universities and TAFE in South Australia visit the South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre (SATAC).

Check South Australian universities at The University of Adelaide, Flinders University and University of South Australia.

For information about Australian universities visit Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching (QILT).

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Career information has been sourced from government publications, see data sources for more information.

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