Environmental Research Scientist

ANZSCO Code: 234313 / Group A

An Environmental Research Scientist investigates and creates policies and programmes to control issues that may cause pollution, imbalance, or degradation of the environment.

Environmental Research Scientist anzsco code 234313

Occupation Descriptions

An Environmental Research Scientist investigates and creates strategies and programmes for controlling elements that contribute to pollution, imbalance, or degradation of the environment. 

Occupations considered suitable under this ANZSCO code:

  • Air Pollution Analyst
  • Ecologist
  • Land Degradation Analyst
  • Water Quality Analyst

Occupation not suitable under this ANZSCO code:

  • Environmental Consultant
  • Environmental Health Officer
  • Environmental Manager
  • Marine Biologist

These jobs are classified differently in ANZSCO or do not meet the requisite skill level.

Group allocation:

VETASSESS Group A occupation: Environmental Research Scientist

This occupation needs a qualification that is equivalent to the educational level of an Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) Bachelor degree or above, in an area that is strongly relevant to the specified occupation. In addition, applicants must have completed at least one year of highly relevant, post-qualification employment at an adequate skill level within the previous five years.

Applicants will not meet the required skill level if:

  • The qualification(s) are not at the required educational level.
  • The qualification(s) are not in a highly relevant field of study.
  • The employment has been completed prior to the completion of the qualification.

To get a good result in your Skills Assessment, you need to have a positive review of both your qualifications and your job experience.

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Highly relevant paid employment duration (20 hours or more per week): 

You need to have worked for at least one year, after getting your qualifications, in a job that’s closely related to the one you’re applying for. This job should have been for at least 20 hours per week and should have been within the last five years before you applied for the Skills Assessment.

Qualification and Employment Criteria


AQF Bachelor degree or higher degree

This covers qualifications at the levels of AQF Bachelor, Master, and Doctorate. Major fields of study that are highly relevant include:

  • Environmental Science
  • Climate Science
  • Environment and Sustainability
  • Environmental Engineering

The following majors might be reviewed individually if they were earned before gaining at least one year of highly relevant work experience in the related research area:

  • Biodiversity
  • Marine Biology
  • Natural Vegetation and Wildlife
  • Weather and Climate
  • Coastal Engineering
  • Conservation Science
  • Land and Water Management
  • Geographical Information Systems
  • Biosecurity
  • Forestry
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    Highly relevant tasks include, but are not limited to:

    • Exploring how factors like land features, height above sea level, changes in weather and environment, food sources, predators, and human activities affect animal and plant life.
    • Researching and examining pollution, air quality, population characteristics, ecosystems, and analyzing mineral, soil, and water samples.

    Additional tasks may include: 

    • Creating and trying out models of the environment by using understanding of ecology, math, statistics, and physical sciences.
    • Carrying out evaluations or audits to understand the effects on the environment.
    • Studying how groups of living things are organized and forecasting what might happen when human actions or environmental shifts disrupt them.
    • Creating policies to conserve and manage biological resources like fish and forests, and setting guidelines and methods for controlling pollution and restoring areas affected by activities such as mining, deforestation, and overgrazing.
    • Suggesting ways to tackle harmful effects on the environment.
    • Creating graphs, charts, and statistics using data, analyzing the data, comparing them with the findings of other scientists, assessing the data, and writing reports summarizing the conclusions.
    • Organizing and carrying out field trips to observe animals and plants in their natural habitats and collecting samples for further study in the laboratory.
    • Helping to create policies, strategies, and guidelines for environmental management.

    Employment information

    agencies, universities, or private companies involved in energy, water, waste management, gas, mining, construction, and land development. Their tasks may vary depending on the research area and could be conducted in offices, laboratories, or outdoor locations.

    An ecologist is a scientist who studies the interactions between animals, plants, and their surroundings. It’s important to note that this role differs from that of an Environmental Consultant (ANZSCO 234312). Environmental Consultants analyze and provide advice on policies guiding the planning, execution, and adjustment of governmental or commercial environmental operations and programs. Therefore, employment as an Environmental Consultant won’t be considered highly relevant for this occupation.

    Moreover, jobs that primarily involve routine testing of samples like water, air, soil, or other environmental samples to detect contaminants, and don’t entail independent research, wouldn’t align with the scope of this occupation.

    Supporting Material for Assessment

    When you apply for a Skills Assessment, make sure you include enough evidence to support your claims about your identity, qualifications, and work experience. You can find a complete list of the documents needed on the VETASSESS website under Eligibility Criteria. Additionally, you can offer extra evidence about your role, such as project summaries for grant applications, research articles or presentations from conferences, lab reports, patents, and a list of research projects detailing your duties.

    How to apply

    If you’re a professional choosing to migrate to Australia, chances are you’re likely to be assessed by us. We assess 360 different professional occupations, assessing your skills, experience and qualifications.


    Find the VETASSESS occupation that most closely fits your skills and experience. 


    Match your skills and experience to your chosen occupation.


    Get ready to apply by preparing all the information and documents you need. 


    Apply online when you’re ready. If you’re still unsure, skills assessment support is available when you need it.