Social Professionals research and study human behaviour, society and institutions from current and historical perspectives, and verbally render spoken statements, and transcribe text and recorded spoken material from one language into another.

A Bachelor Degree or higher is usually required and more than three in five workers have a university degree. Sometimes relevant experience or on-the-job training is needed in addition to a qualification.

Tasks

  • assembling historical data by consulting sources of information such as historical indexes and catalogues, archives, court records, diaries, newspaper files and other materials
  • organising, authenticating, evaluating and interpreting historical, political, sociological, anthropological and linguistic data
  • undertaking historical and cultural research into human activity, and preparing and presenting research findings
  • providing simultaneous and consecutive verbal or signed renditions of speeches into another language
  • rendering the meaning and feeling of what is said and signed into another language in the appropriate register and style in a range of settings such as courts, hospitals, schools, workplaces and conferences
  • studying original texts and transcripts of recorded spoken material to comprehend subject matter and translating them into another language
  • rendering the meaning and feeling of written material, such as literary, legal, technical and scientific texts, into another language in the appropriate register and style, so that it will read as an original piece rather than as a translation

Job Titles

  • Historian
  • Interpreter
  • Translator
  • Archaeologist
  • Other Social Professionals
  • Historian

    Researches the history of human activity and prepares accounts of findings.

    Specialisations: Art Historian, Cultural Historian, Economic Historian, Geographical Historian

  • Interpreter

    Transfers a spoken or signed language into another spoken or signed language, usually within a limited time frame in the presence of the participants requiring the translation.

  • Translator

    Transfers a source text from one language into another, usually within an extended time frame to allow for corrections and modifications and without the presence of the participants requiring the translation.

  • Archaeologist

    Studies human activity in the past, primarily through the recovery and analysis of the material culture and environmental data left behind, which includes artifacts, architecture, biofacts and cultural landscapes (the archaeological record).

  • Other Social Professionals

    Includes Anthropologist, Criminologist, Geographer, Heritage Consultant, Linguist, Parole Board Member, Political Scientist, Sociologist, Transport Analyst

Fast Facts

  • Avg. Weekly Pay

    $1,300 Before Tax
  • Future Growth

    moderate
  • Skill Level

    Bachelor Degree or higher
  • Employment Size

    10100
  • Unemployment

    above average
  • Male Share

    40.3%
  • Female Share

    59.7%
  • Full-Time Share

    35.0%

Find Vacancies

This is a small occupation employing 10,100 workers. Over the past 5 years the number of jobs has fallen.
Moderate growth is expected in the future. New jobs and turnover from workers leaving may create between 5,001 and 10,000 job openings over the 5 years to 2020.

  • While there are jobs in many parts of Australia, Victoria has a large share of Social Professionals.
  • They mainly work in: Professional, Scientific and Technical Services; Public Administration and Safety; and Education and Training.
  • Part-time work is very common. Full-time workers, on average, work 39.9 hours per week (compared to the all jobs average of 40 hours).
  • Average earnings for full-time workers are around $1,300 per week (similar to the all jobs average of $1,230). Earnings tend to be lower when starting out and higher as experience grows.
  • The workforce is fairly mature. The average age is 46 years (compared to the all jobs average of 40 years) and around 5 in 10 workers are aged 45 years or older.
  • Around 6 in 10 workers are female.
  • In 2016, the unemployment rate was above average.

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Employment trend data to November 2015 and Department of Employment projections to 2020.
YearNumber of Workers
200510000
20067700
20079300
200810700
20099700
201013700
201110900
201210300
201312800
201411100
201510100
202010400

Weekly Earnings

Full-time Earnings

All Jobs Average

Weekly Earnings (before tax)

Source: Based on ABS Characteristics of Employment survey, August 2015, Cat. No. 6333.0, Customised Report. Median earnings are before tax and do not include superannuation. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
EarningsSocial ProfessionalsAll Jobs Average
Full-Time Earnings13001230

Hours

Weekly Hours Worked

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Hours actually worked by people who usually work full-time, and share of employment by full-time and part-time status, for this job compared to the all jobs average.
CategorySocial ProfessionalsAll Jobs Average
Full-time3568.4
Part-time6531.6
Average Weekly Hours (full-time)39.940

Main Industries

Top Industries

Main Employing Industries (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services51.5
Public Administration and Safety21.4
Education and Training12.4
Manufacturing3.8
Other Industries10.9

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateSocial ProfessionalsAll Jobs Average
NSW22.831.8
VIC37.225.5
QLD10.819.8
SA106.8
WA1111.2
TAS1.82
NT11.1
ACT5.41.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketSocial ProfessionalsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-193-5.45.4
20-241.4-9.99.9
25-3426.4-23.423.4
35-4417.2-21.721.7
45-5425.3-21.121.1
55-594.7-8.78.7
60-6414-5.95.9
65 and Over8-3.83.8

Gender

Male Share

Female Share

Gender (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Male and female share of employment in this job compared to the all jobs average.
CategorySocial ProfessionalsCategoryAll Jobs Average
Males40.3Males53.6
Females59.7Females46.4

Education Level

Top Education Levels

Highest Level of Education (% share)

Source: ABS, Education and Work (2016). Findings based on use of ABS TableBuilder data. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Skill level requirements can change over time, the qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Type of QualificationSocial ProfessionalsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate34.5-8.68.6
Bachelor degree36.9-17.917.9
Advanced Diploma/Diploma14.3-10.110.1
Certificate III/IV0-18.918.9
Year 1214.3-18.718.7
Years 11 & 100-17.717.7
Below Year 100-8.18.1

A Bachelor Degree or higher is usually required and more than three in five workers have a university degree. Sometimes relevant experience or on-the-job training is needed in addition to a qualification.

If you are interested in this style of work, there are a wide range of training options available that could lead to this or a similar job.
The pathway that is right for you will depend on your skills and interests.

It is a good idea to speak to industry bodies, employers, and workers to learn more about the skills and qualifications you will need.

Employers look for Social Professionals who have good leadership and planning skills, with a strong ability to communicate.

Knowledge

The topics, subjects, or knowledge areas workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Sociology and Anthropology

    100% Important

    Group behaviour and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.

  2. English Language

    89% Important

    English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

  3. Education and Training

    83% Important

    Teaching and course design.

  4. Mathematics

    70% Important

    Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

  5. Computers and Electronics

    60% Important

    Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

Occupational Information Network Sociologists Opens in a new window
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. The information on this site is derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2

Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Activities

The work activities workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Analyzing Data or Information

    96% Important

    Looking at, working with, and understanding data or information.

  2. Getting Information

    95% Important

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  3. Interacting With Computers

    92% Important

    Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

  4. Interpreting Information for Others

    91% Important

    Helping people to understand and use information.

  5. Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge

    90% Important

    Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.

Occupational Information Network Sociologists Opens in a new window
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. The information on this site is derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2

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