How to Start a Career as a Land Surveyor in Texas

How to Start a Career as a Land Surveyor in TexasHow to Start a Career as a Land Surveyor in Texas

Land surveying is an exciting and rewarding career that involves measuring and mapping the Earth’s surface. The work of land surveyors is essential in the construction, engineering, and land development industries. If you have a passion for math, technology, and the great outdoors, pursuing a career as a land surveyor may be the right path for you. In this blog post, we will explore the steps you can take to start a career as a land surveyor in Texas.

1. Obtain a Degree in Surveying or a Related Field:

To become a land surveyor, it is recommended to pursue a bachelor’s degree in surveying or a related field such as geomatics or civil engineering. These programs provide a solid foundation in surveying principles, data collection techniques, geodesy, and mapping. Additionally, coursework in mathematics, physics, and computer science is beneficial as it develops the necessary analytical and technical skills required in surveying.

2. Gain Practical Experience:

While earning a degree is important, gaining practical experience is equally crucial. Look for opportunities to intern or work as an assistant under licensed surveyors. This hands-on experience allows you to apply theoretical knowledge in real-world scenarios, learn about surveying equipment and techniques, and understand the complexities of land surveying projects. Some educational programs may also offer cooperative learning or field training programs that combine classroom instruction with practical experience.

3. Get Licensed:

To practice as a professional land surveyor, you must obtain a license. Requirements for licensure vary depending on the country and state you wish to work in. In many jurisdictions, a combination of education, experience, and passing the Professional Land Surveyor (PLS) exam is necessary to become licensed. It is essential to research and understand the specific requirements and regulations in your area to ensure compliance.

4. Continue Education and Professional Development:

Topographic surveying is an ever-evolving field, with advancements in technology and changes in regulations. To stay current and enhance your skills, it is essential to invest in continuing education and professional development. Attend workshops, conferences, and seminars related to surveying, geomatics, or land development. Join professional organizations such as the National Society of Professional Surveyors (NSPS) or the International Federation of Surveyors (FIG) to network with industry professionals and gain access to valuable resources.

5. Invest in Specialization:

As you gain experience and establish yourself in the field, consider specializing in a specific area of Texas surveying. Specializations such as geodetic surveying, hydrographic surveying, or construction surveying allow you to develop expertise in a particular niche. Specialization can open up new career opportunities and increase earning potential. It is beneficial to acquire additional certifications or training specific to your chosen specialization to distinguish yourself in the industry.

6. Develop Soft Skills:

In addition to technical knowledge, soft skills play a significant role in a successful surveying career. Land surveyors often work in teams, communicate with clients, and interact with other professionals in the construction or engineering field. Developing strong communication, problem-solving, and leadership skills can greatly enhance your effectiveness as a surveyor. Additionally, being detail-oriented, organized, and able to work independently are valuable traits in this profession.

7. Stay Safe:

Safety should always be a top priority in land surveying. Surveyors work in diverse environments, including construction sites, forests, and urban areas, which may pose potential hazards. Always adhere to safety protocols, use proper protective equipment, and stay informed about the latest safety guidelines and regulations. Regularly assess and mitigate risks to ensure your personal safety, as well as the safety of others working on the site.


Starting a career as a land surveyor requires a combination of education, practical experience, and ongoing professional development. By obtaining the necessary education, gaining practical experience, and obtaining a license, you are on the right path to becoming a professional surveyor. Continuing education, specialization, and developing soft skills will further enhance your career prospects. Remember to prioritize safety in all aspects of your work. With dedication and passion, you can build a successful and fulfilling career as a land surveyor.

Got Questions? Let Us Help!

At Smyth Surveyors, Inc., we offer professional, official, and dependable surveying. Our staff are all trained and licensed with our owner holding an L.S.L.S license. We can offer surveying for gas and oil well locations, pipeline right-of-way acquisition and construction alignment, determination of original survey boundaries, title boundary surveys, topographic surveys, and construction staking. If you are looking for a surveying company that has a prestigious record and an impeccable reputation look no further than Smyth Surveyors, Inc. Contact us today to speak with one of our friendly project managers in Texas and set up some time with us!