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Jobs Rated 2010: A Ranking of 200 Jobs From Best to Worst

actuary, roustabout, dental hygenist, biologist By Andrew Strieber

This is our 2010 Jobs Rated report. See the 200 Best Jobs of 2011

When launching their careers, many job seekers had a simple method of choosing the best job for them: They guessed. A job might "feel right" or "sound cool" or be considered successful according to the media, conventional wisdom or the advice of others. However, as many realtors and autoworkers will tell you, conventional wisdom can change. And with fierce competition for jobs making it tougher than ever to get a "do-over" if you make the wrong choice, guessing is not a smart approach to career management.

So if the lesson of the past year is that you need to determine the best career path for you the first time around, how exactly can you do that? For starters, having a few facts will help. CareerCast.com's 2010 Jobs Rated report offers a comprehensive analysis of 200 different jobs – from Accountant to Zoologist – giving each a unique ranking based on factual analysis and hard data, not guesswork. If you're entering (or re-entering) the job market and want to avoid selecting the wrong career, our rankings can help you make a stronger, more informed decision, both for today and the long-term.

How does Jobs Rated determine which professions rank better than others? Data on each job is broken down into five key categories: Physical Demands, Work Environment, Income, Stress and Hiring Outlook. Jobs receive a score in each individual category, and when these are added together, the career with the best overall score is ranked 1st, while the one with the worst overall score is ranked 200th.

Of course every employee is different, and what you consider a "dream job" might be someone else's idea of a career nightmare. Because of this, a simple ranking may not be enough – you need to know what a particular job is really like on a day-to-day basis. This is where the survey's individual scores and rankings can help. If you're the type who cares a lot about income but doesn't mind stress, for example, public relations executive might be a great career for you. While the job may seem less desirable with an overall ranking of 79, it ranks 19th for median income and 193rd for stress – perfect for the job seeker who wants good pay and can handle a high-stress environment.

Interprets statistics to determine probabilities of accidents, sickness, and death, and loss of property from theft and natural disasters.

  • Overall Score: 46.00
  • Income: $85,229.00

  • Work Environment:
    179.440
  • Stress:
    20.187
  • Hiring Outlook:
    24.79

Researches, designs, develops and maintains software systems along with hardware development for medical, scientific, and industrial purposes.

  • Overall Score: 66.00
  • Income: $85,139.00

  • Work Environment:
    150.000
  • Stress:
    25.000
  • Hiring Outlook:
    45.39

Plans and develops computer systems for businesses and scientific institutions.

  • Overall Score: 77.00
  • Income: $76,162.00

  • Work Environment:
    90.780
  • Stress:
    24.965
  • Hiring Outlook:
    29.62

Studies the relationship of plants and animals to their environment.

  • Overall Score: 123.00
  • Income: $71,279.00

  • Work Environment:
    314.370
  • Stress:
    26.946
  • Hiring Outlook:
    24.79

Analyzes and records historical information from a specific era or according to a particular area of expertise.

  • Overall Score: 132.00
  • Income: $62,226.00

  • Work Environment:
    136.410
  • Stress:
    28.419
  • Hiring Outlook:
    24.26

Applies mathematical theories and formulas to teach or solve problems in a business, educational, or industrial climate.

  • Overall Score: 133.00
  • Income: $95,161.00

  • Work Environment:
    89.720
  • Stress:
    24.673
  • Hiring Outlook:
    11.11

Assists attorneys in preparation of legal documents; collection of depositions and affidavits; and investigation, research and analysis of legal issues.

  • Overall Score: 179.00
  • Income: $46,152.00

  • Work Environment:
    263.820
  • Stress:
    23.084
  • Hiring Outlook:
    22.52

Tabulates, analyzes, and interprets the numeric results of experiments and surveys.

  • Overall Score: 187.00
  • Income: $73,193.00

  • Work Environment:
    89.520
  • Stress:
    27.975
  • Hiring Outlook:
    9.93

Prepares and analyzes financial reports to assist managers in business, industry and government.

  • Overall Score: 190.00
  • Income: $59,176.00

  • Work Environment:
    276.780
  • Stress:
    31.138
  • Hiring Outlook:
    18.76

Assists dentists in diagnostic and therapeutic aspects of a group or private dental practice.

  • Overall Score: 198.00
  • Income: $67,107.00

  • Work Environment:
    593.250
  • Stress:
    24.719
  • Hiring Outlook:
    30.07

Studies questions concerning the nature of intellectual concepts, and attempts to construct rational theories concerning our understanding of the world around us.

  • Overall Score: 207.00
  • Income: $60,218.00

  • Work Environment:
    361.440
  • Stress:
    30.497
  • Hiring Outlook:
    24.18

Studies the physical characteristics, motions and processes of the earth's atmosphere.

  • Overall Score: 210.00
  • Income: $81,226.00

  • Work Environment:
    179.640
  • Stress:
    29.192
  • Hiring Outlook:
    12.26

Transforms scientific and technical information into readily understandable language.

  • Overall Score: 215.00
  • Income: $62,162.00

  • Work Environment:
    221.250
  • Stress:
    36.506
  • Hiring Outlook:
    20.12

Oversees the successful operations by assisting in the direction of policies and procedures for a financial institution.

  • Overall Score: 222.00
  • Income: $88,217.00

  • Work Environment:
    390.560
  • Stress:
    35.395
  • Hiring Outlook:
    14.67

Creating and maintaining layout, navigation, and interactivity of intranet and internet websites.

  • Overall Score: 229.00
  • Income: $60,090.00

  • Work Environment:
    275.000
  • Stress:
    27.000
  • Hiring Outlook:
    29.40

Plans for optimum use of facilities and personnel to improve industrial efficiency.

  • Overall Score: 232.00
  • Income: $74,123.00

  • Work Environment:
    230.300
  • Stress:
    34.545
  • Hiring Outlook:
    20.73

Related to careers in portfolio management, the financial planner offers a broad range of services aimed at assisting individuals in managing and planning their financial future.

  • Overall Score: 233.00
  • Income: $59,353.00

  • Work Environment:
    225.000
  • Stress:
    38.350
  • Hiring Outlook:
    16.03

Designs, develops, and tests new technologies concerned with the manufacture of commercial and military aircraft and spacecraft.

  • Overall Score: 254.00
  • Income: $93,133.00

  • Work Environment:
    230.300
  • Stress:
    34.545
  • Hiring Outlook:
    10.33

Advises physicians and patients on the affects of drugs and medications; prepares and dispenses prescriptions.

  • Overall Score: 260.00
  • Income: $106,070.00

  • Work Environment:
    788.640
  • Stress:
    25.877
  • Hiring Outlook:
    22.20

Maintains complete, accurate, and up-to-date medical records for use in treatment, billing, and statistical surveys.

  • Overall Score: 263.00
  • Income: $31,150.00

  • Work Environment:
    165.200
  • Stress:
    19.620
  • Hiring Outlook:
    17.00

The 2010 Jobs Rated rankings serve as a guide for anyone trying to get a clearer picture of employment in an uncertain time. Whether you're graduating from college, have recently found yourself downsized or just can't stand the thought of going back to the grind for one more day, our rankings and individual category scores can help you take the guesswork out of your job search. And with facts on your side, you'll be starting out ahead of the game.

See the complete ranking of all 200 jobs: Continue to jobs 21 - 40

More 2010 Jobs Rated Rankings
The 10 Best JobsThe 10 Worst JobsThe Top 200 JobsJobs Rated Methodology
The Top 10 Scary, Creepy, and Just Plain Disturbing Jobs of 2010

 


Firefighters?

This list is complete nonsense. Especially ridiculous are the scores for firefighter. Bad scores for work environment and stress? Yeah, sitting around the firehouse, playing ping pong and volleyball, waxing your car, sleeping, cooking elaborate meals and then driving your truck to a heart attack and standing around while EMTs work on the victim. And working tons of overtime yet having lots of time off. Sounds horrible. 

Awesome

Very credible. Many of these jobs are in academia (like philosopher and historian). These are positions held by people with advanced degrees in their fields who lead a life of research, collaboration, and sometimes teaching duties. I would wager to say that their six-figure incomes are there because many people in society consider them far more than obsolete. Just because you don't use philosophy, history, classics, etc. regularly, that doesn't mean the same is true for the rest of society.

Unfortunately, No

This list doesn't seem at all credible. There are such things as professional philosphers, but in the humanities there are probably thousands of PhD students for every open position. This list is downright irresponsible.

i didn't understand the basis of ranking.

please elaborate how these jobs have been ranked.
And is the income mentioned a global average or U.S. average?

jobs

A job...that is what you are going to do the rest of your life. None of these jobs seem likeable something fun! With my life, I want to do something interesting where when you go to work, you do not know what you are going to do. Or it is something where you get up in the morning and you can not wait to do. I still do not know what to do with my life and I am running out of time, I want to do something productive, but what?

Moronic list

A job that is stressful to one person is a dream job to another. Sitting in an office crunching numbers all day would probably give a lumberjack a stroke within a week. Did it occur to anyone that this list was put together by a bunch of statisticians?

List is just silly

Librarian, Book Binder and Typist? Seriously? All are almost obsolete.

Those are almost as crazy as Philosopher.

Yes, philosophers.

"Those are almost as crazy as Philosopher."
You've probably heard of men like Aristotle, Socrates or Nostradamus.
Or how about Nietzche (sp?), Rousseau or Foucault. Why is it that we all know them? For sure because their work is obsolete, right? I'm not saying we need hundreds of thousands of philosophers to make the world go round, but it does help to have a few of us who actually take time to think, unlike, you know, politicians.

No, philosopher

Being a philosopher is not a job. There is no pay involved in being a philosopher. Sure we need forward thinking people, but that is left to professors, religious icons, and forward thinking individuals/groups in career fields etc.

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