Meteorologists study climate processes, measure and predict weather patterns and provide consultancy services to a variety of weather information users. They work out models for weather forecasting, develop instruments to collect meteorological data and compile statistics and databases.

Other titles

The following job titles also refer to meteorologist:

atmospheric research scientist
atmospheric science researcher
atmospheric researcher
atmospheric analyst
meteorology research analyst
atmospheric scientist
marine meteorologist
meteorology research scientist
meteorology analyst
meteorology researcher
atmospheric research analyst
meteorology science researcher
meteorology scientist

Minimum qualifications

Bachelor’s degree is generally required to work as meteorologist. However, this requirement may differ in some countries.

ISCO skill level

ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:

  • the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
  • the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
  • the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.

Meteorologist is a Skill level 4 occupation.

Meteorologist career path

Similar occupations

These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to meteorologist.

weather forecaster

Long term prospects

These occupations require some skills and knowledge of meteorologist. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of meteorologist with a significant experience and/or extensive training.

Essential knowledge and skills

Essential knowledge

This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of meteorologist.

Mathematics: Mathematics is the study of topics such as quantity, structure, space, and change. It involves the identification of patterns and formulating new conjectures based on them. Mathematicians strive to prove the truth or falsity of these conjectures. There are many fields of mathematics, some of which are widely used for practical applications.
Meteorology: The scientific field of study that examines the atmosphere, atmospheric phenomena, and atmospheric effects on our weather.
Climatology: The scientific field of study that deals with researching average weather conditions over a specified period of time and how they affected nature on Earth.

Essential skills and competences

These skills are necessary for the role of meteorologist.

Use specialised computer models for weather forecasting: Make short-term and long-term weather forecasts applying physical and mathematical formulae; understand specialised computer modelling applications.
Use meteorological tools to forecast meteorological conditions: Use meteorological data and tools such as weather facsimile machines, weather charts and computer terminals, to anticipate weather conditions.
Execute analytical mathematical calculations: Apply mathematical methods and make use of calculation technologies in order to perform analyses and devise solutions to specific problems.
Apply statistical analysis techniques: Use models (descriptive or inferential statistics) and techniques (data mining or machine learning) for statistical analysis and ICT tools to analyse data, uncover correlations and forecast trends.
Perform scientific research: Gain, correct or improve knowledge about phenomena by using scientific methods and techniques, based on empirical or measurable observations.
Review meteorological forecast data: Revise estimated meteorological parameters; solve gaps between real-time conditions and estimated conditions.
Apply scientific methods: Apply scientific methods and techniques to investigate phenomena, by acquiring new knowledge or correcting and integrating previous knowledge.
Carry out meteorological research: Participate in research activities on weather-related conditions and phenomena; study the physical and chemical characteristics and processes of the atmosphere; present research results in scientific journals.

Optional knowledge and skills

Optional knowledge

This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of meteorologist. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

Geographic information systems: The tools involved in geographical mapping and positioning, such as GPS (global positioning systems), GIS (geographical information systems), and RS (remote sensing).
Oceanography: The scientific discipline that studies oceanic phenomena such as marine organisms, plate tectonics, and the geology of the ocean bottom.
Statistics: The study of statistical theory, methods and practices such as collection, organisation, analysis, interpretation and presentation of data. It deals with all aspects of data including the planning of data collection in terms of the design of surveys and experiments in order to forecast and plan work-related activities.
Scientific research methodology: The theoretical methodology used in scientific research involving doing background research, constructing an hypothesis, testing it, analysing data and concluding the results.

Optional skills and competences

These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of meteorologist. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

Operate remote sensing equipment: Set up and operate remote sensing equipment such as radars, telescopes, and aerial cameras in order to obtain information about Earth’s surface and atmosphere.
Collect weather-related data: Gather data from satellites, radars, remote sensors, and weather stations in order to obtain information about weather conditions and phenomena.
Use geographic information systems: Work with computer data systems such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS).
Conduct research on climate processes: Conduct research on the characteristic events occurring in the atmosphere during the interactions and transformations of various atmospheric components and conditions.
Operate meteorological instruments: Operate equipment for measuring weather conditions, such as thermometers, anemometers, and rain gauges.
Develop models for weather forecast: Develop mathematical models of the atmosphere and oceans to predict the weather based on current weather conditions.
Manage meteorological database: Develop and maintain meteorological databases. Add information after each new observation.
Study aerial photos: Use aerial photos to study phenomena on Earth’s surface.
Calibrate electronic instruments: Correct and adjust the reliability of an electronic instrument by measuring output and comparing results with the data of a reference device or a set of standardised results. This is done in regular intervals which are set by the manufacturer and using calibration devices.
Write scientific papers: Present the hypothesis, findings, and conclusions of your scientific research in your field of expertise in a professional publication.
Assist scientific research: Assist engineers or scientists with conducting experiments, performing analysis, developing new products or processes, constructing theory, and quality control.
Create weather maps: Make graphic weather maps for specific areas containing information such as temperature, air pressure, and rain belts.
Write weather briefing: Present various information such as air pressure, temperature and humidity to customers in the form of a weather brief.
Design graphics: Apply a variety of visual techniques in order to design graphic material. Combine graphical elements to communicate concepts and ideas.
Design scientific equipment: Design new equipment or adapt existing equipment to aid scientists in gathering and analysing data and samples.
Present during live broadcasts: Present live on political, economic, cultural, social, international or sport events, or host a live broadcast program.

ISCO group and title

2112 – Meteorologists





  1. Meteorologist – ESCO
Last updated on August 8, 2022

Thinking about your next career move?

Answer a few questions about your jobs and education, and we’ll give you suggestions about your best possible career move. It’s completely free!