Skip to main content design--angle-right

These are Oklahoma’s top critical occupations. These occupations represent the most pressing needs in each of Oklahoma’s Driver and Complementary Economic Systems necessary for the state’s continued growth and economic prosperity. Learn more about the methodology, definitions and limitations of the Critical Occupations here.

Download the 2018-2020 Top Critical Occupations List

SOCDescription2018 Jobs2028 jobsChange
(2018-2028)
Median Hourly EarningsTypical Entry Level EducationWork Experience RequiredTypical On‐The‐Job TrainingCertificate available for HS or LessAnnual OpeningsApr 2018 Unique Postings
Source: EMSI 2018.2
29‐1069Physicians and Surgeons, All Other2,5113,023294$105.76Doctoral or professional degreeNoneInternship/residency108546
29‐1021Dentists, General1,2941,486192$65.78Doctoral or professional degreeNoneNone5774
11‐9041Architectural and Engineering Managers2,1912,114110$56.68Bachelor's degree5 years or moreNone153157
17‐2171Petroleum Engineers2,6732,860172$55.32Bachelor's degreeNoneNone20469
19‐2042Geoscientists, Except Hydrologists and Geographers1,0401,18097$54.73Bachelor's degreeNoneNone11312
29‐1041Optometrists671831152$49.30Doctoral or professional degreeNoneNone388
29‐1071Physician Assistants1,4521,762278$49.20Master's degreeNoneNone115238
11‐3021Computer and Information Systems Managers3,2643,561315$47.42Bachelor's degree5 years or moreNone277115
11‐3031Financial Managers6,5327,073509$43.58Bachelor's degree5 years or moreNone543449
29‐1171Nurse Practitioners1,3851,727342$43.36Master's degreeNoneNone109221
17‐2071Electrical Engineers1,5481,34168$41.40Bachelor's degreeNoneNone90283
29‐1131Veterinarians9841,115117$39.73Doctoral or professional degreeNoneNone5047
29‐1123Physical Therapists2,0142,544511$39.44Doctoral or professional degreeNoneNone143572
15‐1132Software Developers, Applications4,8014,923494$39.05Bachelor's degreeNoneNone3451,030
17‐2112Industrial Engineers2,6091,901156$38.60Bachelor's degreeNoneNone134583
17‐2051Civil Engineers2,2692,512205$38.15Bachelor's degreeNoneNone193204
11‐1021General and Operations Managers27,50329,8252,167$37.47Bachelor's degree5 years or moreNone2,5231,066
17‐2141Mechanical Engineers3,0372,704134$37.39Bachelor's degreeNoneNone182390
11‐9111Medical and Health Services Managers5,8996,585426$37.09Bachelor's degreeLess than 5 yearsNone532491
17‐1011Architects, Except Landscape and Naval785902108$36.77Bachelor's degreeNoneInternship/residency7312
15‐1121Computer Systems Analysts3,3883,757580$36.73Bachelor's degreeNoneNone277454
15‐1133Software Developers, Systems Software2,9472,536211$35.78Bachelor's degreeNoneNone175158
29‐2021Dental Hygienists2,0502,385329$35.63Associate's degreeNoneNone16651
11‐9021Construction Managers2,9963,222238$35.55Bachelor's degreeNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job training234191
13‐1081Logisticians2,2802,436114$35.28Bachelor's degreeNoneNone239171
15‐1122Information Security Analysts67570771$34.44Bachelor's degreeLess than 5 yearsNone52197
13‐1111Management Analysts4,4925,201492$33.84Bachelor's degreeLess than 5 yearsNone467515
15‐1141Database Administrators9431,00075$33.23Bachelor's degreeNoneNone6891
17‐2081Environmental Engineers71078561$32.38Bachelor's degreeNoneNone5553
29‐2032Diagnostic Medical Sonographers9261,096170$31.90Associate's degreeNoneNone6940
29‐9011Occupational Health and Safety Specialists1,3631,50286$31.41Bachelor's degreeNoneNone8366
13‐2051Financial Analysts1,7801,883205$30.80Bachelor's degreeNoneNone169114
15‐1142Network and Computer Systems Administrators2,8973,019170$30.52Bachelor's degreeNoneNone196577
17‐3023Electrical and Electronics Engineering Technicians1,5101,54922$30.16Associate's degreeNoneNone136151
29‐1127Speech‐Language Pathologists1,6171,865228$30.00Master's degreeNoneInternship/residency110233
49‐1011First‐Line Supervisors of Mechanics, Installers, and Repairers6,4096,936404$29.91High school diploma or equivalentLess than 5 yearsNoneCertificate Available609440
29‐2035Magnetic Resonance Imaging Technologists33037343$29.83Associate's degreeLess than 5 yearsNone2341
13‐2052Personal Financial Advisors1,2351,496261$29.72Bachelor's degreeNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job training127102
13‐2011Accountants and Auditors14,92617,0502,066$29.34Bachelor's degreeNoneNone1,603797
17‐3026Industrial Engineering Technicians88572423$29.04Associate's degreeNoneNone6485
47‐1011First‐Line Supervisors of Construction Trades and Extraction Workers9,39610,5721,152$28.94High school diploma or equivalent5 years or moreNoneCertificate Available1,072190
29‐1141Registered Nurses27,38930,6332,558$28.49Associate's degreeNoneNone1,7515,483
15‐2031Operations Research Analysts827928179$28.35Bachelor's degreeNoneNone6762
13‐1051Cost Estimators1,9012,060234$27.84Bachelor's degreeNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job training21062
19‐2041Environmental Scientists and Specialists, Including Health47857076$27.08Bachelor's degreeNoneNone5615
13‐1023Purchasing Agents, Except Wholesale, Retail, and Farm Products3,8833,84976$27.07Bachelor's degreeNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job training338224
13‐1022Wholesale and Retail Buyers, Except Farm Products1,3011,402109$27.00Bachelor's degreeNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job training16211
29‐2011Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technologists2,0412,348253$26.82Bachelor's degreeNoneNone164170
13‐2061Financial Examiners42954958$26.52Bachelor's degreeNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job training4415
53‐1031First‐Line Supervisors of Transportation and Material‐Moving Machine and Vehicle Operators2,9723,230230$26.03High school diploma or equivalentLess than 5 yearsNoneCertificate Available340828
19‐4041Geological and Petroleum Technicians1,3021,406104$25.92Associate's degreeNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job training14810
29‐1031Dietitians and Nutritionists74184883$25.92Bachelor's degreeNoneInternship/residency5748
13‐2072Loan Officers4,2224,674409$25.61Bachelor's degreeNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job training402206
51‐1011First‐Line Supervisors of Production and Operating Workers8,5898,382177$25.56High school diploma or equivalentLess than 5 yearsNoneCertificate Available831604
47‐5012Rotary Drill Operators, Oil and Gas1,9892,114125$25.29No formal educational credentialNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job training26821
29‐1126Respiratory Therapists1,1491,24894$25.11Associate's degreeNoneNone66148
17‐3022Civil Engineering Technicians71976243$25.08Associate's degreeNoneNone6930
49‐9051Electrical Power‐Line Installers and Repairers2,1752,498312$24.81High school diploma or equivalentNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available21824
13‐2041Credit Analysts61567662$24.36Bachelor's degreeNoneNone5833
15‐1134Web Developers9431,096157$24.34Associate's degreeNoneNone86502
13‐1151Training and Development Specialists2,9023,032175$24.32Bachelor's degreeLess than 5 yearsNone298288
29‐2034Radiologic Technologists2,3212,512139$24.22Associate's degreeNoneNone144170
49‐9041Industrial Machinery Mechanics4,6915,528959$23.66High school diploma or equivalentNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available526197
47‐2111Electricians6,6587,631995$23.47High school diploma or equivalentNoneApprenticeshipCertificate Available887193
47‐5011Derrick Operators, Oil and Gas1,1531,254101$23.17No formal educational credentialNoneShort‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available1580
47‐2152Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters6,4397,299818$22.23High school diploma or equivalentNoneApprenticeshipCertificate Available79587
19‐4031Chemical Technicians55759038$22.07Associate's degreeNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job training5832
47‐4011Construction and Building Inspectors1,6881,904189$21.81High school diploma or equivalent5 years or moreModerate‐term on‐the‐job training21137
49‐9021Heating, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers3,4213,964531$21.11Postsecondary nondegree awardNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job training406140
49‐3042Mobile Heavy Equipment Mechanics, Except Engines1,9152,109149$20.90High school diploma or equivalentNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available20750
47‐5013Service Unit Operators, Oil, Gas, and Mining3,2813,432151$20.54No formal educational credentialNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job training437136
51‐4041Machinists6,0665,653250$20.07High school diploma or equivalentNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available596224
33‐3051Police and Sheriff's Patrol Officers7,8669,3141,386$19.77High school diploma or equivalentNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available68738
15‐1151Computer User Support Specialists7,8998,244360$19.69Some college, no degreeNoneNone621896
49‐9043Maintenance Workers, Machinery2,7772,956211$19.64High school diploma or equivalentNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available3090
25‐2031Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education11,33811,576238$19.61Bachelor's degreeNoneNone833320
25‐2022Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education7,2507,411161$19.37Bachelor's degreeNoneNone54882
33‐2011Firefighters3,6564,425736$19.34Postsecondary nondegree awardNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job training3399
53‐3032Heavy and Tractor‐Trailer Truck Drivers24,02126,4252,426$19.28Postsecondary nondegree awardNoneShort‐term on‐the‐job training2,92817,573
49‐3031Bus and Truck Mechanics and Diesel Engine Specialists2,8473,254393$19.16High school diploma or equivalentNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available309484
51‐4121Welders, Cutters, Solderers, and Brazers9,3349,583329$19.07High school diploma or equivalentNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available1,045281
25‐2052Special Education Teachers, Kindergarten and Elementary School2,1402,19252$18.94Bachelor's degreeNoneNone16261
25‐2021Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education16,15116,515364$18.67Bachelor's degreeNoneNone1,221799
29‐2061Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses11,30611,995469$18.64Postsecondary nondegree awardNoneNone893586
51‐9061Inspectors, Testers, Sorters, Samplers, and Weighers5,8815,261257$18.07High school diploma or equivalentNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available638219
49‐3021Automotive Body and Related Repairers1,6721,830157$18.06High school diploma or equivalentNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available18230
47‐2073Operating Engineers and Other Construction Equipment Operators6,1847,102900$17.95High school diploma or equivalentNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available81565
51‐4011Computer‐Controlled Machine Tool Operators, Metal and Plastic3,1973,083309$17.69High school diploma or equivalentNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available32285
17‐3025Environmental Engineering Technicians34937226$17.57Associate's degreeNoneNone339
47‐2031Carpenters5,0705,533468$17.42High school diploma or equivalentNoneApprenticeshipCertificate Available52678
29‐2031Cardiovascular Technologists and Technicians59969192$16.59Associate's degreeNoneNone43126
51‐8031Water and Wastewater Treatment Plant and System Operators2,0592,372314$15.38High school diploma or equivalentNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job training21536
29‐2012Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technicians2,2012,583339$14.99Associate's degreeNoneNone18387
29‐2056Veterinary Technologists and Technicians9061,121211$14.98Associate's degreeNoneNone10138
53‐3033Light Truck or Delivery Services Drivers9,1119,687592$14.75High school diploma or equivalentNoneShort‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available1,0512,263
19‐4091Environmental Science and Protection Technicians, Including Health37140331$14.41Associate's degreeNoneNone48105
29‐2052Pharmacy Technicians5,2485,646319$13.98High school diploma or equivalentNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available462367
29‐2081Opticians, Dispensing8531,074221$13.71High school diploma or equivalentNoneLong‐term on‐the‐job training906
29‐2041Emergency Medical Technicians and Paramedics3,5714,409837$13.23Postsecondary nondegree awardNoneNone324105
53‐3021Bus Drivers, Transit and Intercity1,0741,245170$13.05High school diploma or equivalentNoneModerate‐term on‐the‐job trainingCertificate Available15736
,/g>