What is a Physician

While it may take a lot of schooling, becoming a physician eventually pays off. We mean that literally. The median wage is $208,000 a year. But back to that schooling.

Generally, you'll only need a Bachelor's degree. But depending on your specialty, you'll also need 3-7 years in internship and residency programs. That salary makes it all seem worth it, though, doesn't it?

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a Physician. For example, did you know that they make an average of $112.01 an hour? That's $232,983 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 7% and produce 55,400 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Physician Do

There are certain skills that many Physicians have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed Communication skills, Compassion and Detail oriented.

Learn more about what a Physician does

How To Become a Physician

If you're interested in becoming a Physician, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 34.9% of Physicians have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 9.3% of Physicians have master's degrees. Even though most Physicians have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a Physician. When we researched the most common majors for a Physician, we found that they most commonly earn Bachelor's Degree degrees or Doctoral Degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on Physician resumes include Associate Degree degrees or Master's Degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a Physician. In fact, many Physician jobs require experience in a role such as Internship. Meanwhile, many Physicians also have previous career experience in roles such as Medical Director or Physician Assistant.

What is the right job for my career path?

Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the right jobs to get there.

Average Salary
$232,983
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
7%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
49,528
Job Openings
resume document icon

Don't Have A Professional Resume?

0 selections

Physician Career Paths

Physician Jobs You Might Like

What is the right job for my career path?

Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the rights job to get there.

Average Salary for a Physician

Physicians in America make an average salary of $232,983 per year or $112 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $403,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $134,000 per year.
Average Salary
$232,983
Find Your Salary Estimate
How much should you be earning as an Physician? Use Zippia's Salary Calculator to get an estimation of how much you should be earning.
See More Salary Information

Calculate your salary

Use Zippia's Salary Calculator to see how your pay matches up.

12 Physician Resume Examples

Learn How To Write a Physician Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Physician resumes and compiled some information about how to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Physician Resume Examples And Templates

Choose From 10+ Customizable Physician Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Physician templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Physician resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume
Physician Resume

Physician Demographics

Physician Gender Statistics

female

61.0 %

male

39.0 %

Physician Ethnicity Statistics

White

64.7 %

Asian

18.6 %

Hispanic or Latino

9.1 %

Physician Foreign Languages Spoken Statistics

Spanish

54.1 %

French

11.8 %

Russian

4.6 %
Job Openings

Find the best Physician job for you

0 selections
0 selections

Physician Jobs You Might Like

Physician Education

Physician Majors

30.7 %
13.2 %

Physician Degrees

Bachelors

34.9 %

Doctorate

24.3 %

Associate

12.1 %

Top Colleges for Physicians

1. Duke University

Durham, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,695
Enrollment
6,596

2. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

3. Yale University

New Haven, CT • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,430
Enrollment
5,963

4. University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor, MI • Private

In-State Tuition
$15,262
Enrollment
30,079

5. Georgetown University

Washington, DC • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,104
Enrollment
7,089

6. University of California - Los Angeles

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$13,226
Enrollment
31,568

7. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,987
Enrollment
18,946

8. University of Virginia

Charlottesville, VA • Private

In-State Tuition
$17,653
Enrollment
16,405

9. Columbia University in the City of New York

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$59,430
Enrollment
8,216

10. Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, MD • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,740
Enrollment
5,567
Job Openings

Find the best Physician job for you

0 selections
0 selections

Physician Jobs You Might Like

Online Courses For Physician That You May Like

Health After Cancer: Cancer Survivorship for Primary Care
coursera

This course presents basic principles of cancer survivorship to primary-care physicians. Developed by a team of experts in caring for cancer survivors, and narrated by a primary-care physician, this course provides practical tips and tools that can be easily integrated into medical practice. You will learn about the complex physical and psychosocial needs and concerns of the growing number of cancer survivors, along with the key role that primary care physicians have in guiding these patients ba...

Transgender Medicine for General Medical Providers
coursera

The course is a comprehensive set of didactic lectures surveying fundamentals of transgender medical and surgical treatment. The material is meant to provide the student with core knowledge that is essential for current primary care providers caring for transgender patients. There are 10 modules led by the expert clinical faculty from the pioneering Center for Transgender Medicine and Surgery, located within the Mount Sinai Health System and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New Yor...

Health for All Through Primary Health Care
coursera

This course explores why primary health care is central for achieving Health for All. It provides examples of how primary health care has been instrumental in approaching this goal in selected populations and how the principles of primary health care can guide future policies and actions. Two of the most inspiring, least understood, and most often derided terms in global health discourse are "Health for All" and "Primary Health Care." In this course, we will explore these terms in the context of...

Show More Physician Courses
Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For a Physician

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 14.6% of Physicians listed Patient Care on their resume, but soft skills such as Communication skills and Compassion are important as well.

  • Patient Care, 14.6%
  • Health Care, 14.4%
  • Internal Medicine, 11.5%
  • Surgery, 9.3%
  • EMR, 6.7%
  • Other Skills, 43.5%

Best States For a Physician

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a Physician. The best states for people in this position are Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas. Physicians make the most in Florida with an average salary of $227,708. Whereas in Mississippi and Louisiana, they would average $224,494 and $221,904, respectively. While Physicians would only make an average of $220,753 in Texas, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. New Mexico

Total Physician Jobs:
308
Highest 10% Earn:
$288,000
Location Quotient:
1.91
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Oklahoma

Total Physician Jobs:
271
Highest 10% Earn:
$287,000
Location Quotient:
1.07
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Louisiana

Total Physician Jobs:
264
Highest 10% Earn:
$286,000
Location Quotient:
1
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Physicians

How Do Physician Rate Their Jobs?

Working as a Physician? Share your experience anonymously.
Do you work as a Physician?
Rate how you like work as Physician. It's anonymous and will only take a minute.

Top Physician Employers

We've made finding a great employer to work for easy by doing the hard work for you. We looked into employers that employ Physicians and discovered their number of Physician opportunities and average salary. Through our research, we concluded that St. Barnabas Hospital was the best, especially with an average salary of $111,890. Montefiore Health System follows up with an average salary of $128,910, and then comes Bronx-lebanon Hospital Center with an average of $147,956. In addition, we know most people would rather work from home. So instead of having to change careers, we identified the best employers for remote work as a Physician. The employers include Boehringer Ingelheim, Cigna, and Humana

What are the best companies to work for a Physician?

Brian Thomas Ph.D.

Professor, Washburn University

A degree in physics can open doors to working at companies in a variety of industries. Research and development teams at aerospace, computer, software, telecommunications, and other technical-focused companies employ people with degrees in physics at all levels. People trained in physics also work in other areas, including journalism, finance, even the entertainment industry. I don't know that I can recommend any specific companies, but generally, any company focused on technical solutions will likely be a good fit.Show more

Physician Videos

Becoming a Physician FAQs

Do physicians do surgery?

Yes, physicians who specialize in surgery are known as surgeons. While all surgeons are physicians, not all physicians are surgeons.

When a physician has completed medical school, they are required to complete clinical rotations where aspiring doctors experience a variety of specialty areas of medicine. These specialized areas include cardiology, pediatric medicine, and surgery.

Once a physician chooses surgery as a specialty, a lengthy residency follows. The typical residency, where a graduated medical student learns a specialized area of medicine, lasts two to four years. A surgical residency will last approximately five to eight years.

Surgeons have the option to work in general surgery or specialize in one of thirteen surgical areas that range from neurosurgery to plastic surgery.

Learn more about this question

How many years does it take to become a physician?

It takes approximately ten to 14 years to become a licensed physician. There are many different areas of medicine, some of which require additional training.

Anyone aspiring to become a physician will need to earn a four-year degree and attend four years of medical school. After graduation from medical school, a physician will choose an area of concentration or specialty.

Recently graduated physicians move on to become residents. Resident physicians are newly graduated physicians who are now getting experience in their area of specialty.

The time for completing a residency varies with different medical specialties. A nonsurgical residency is typically two to four years, whereas a physician hoping to specialize in performing surgery is five to eight years.

Learn more about this question

Is being a physician a good career?

Yes, becoming a physician is a good career. There are innumerable opportunities within the medical field for physicians who can pursue the specific type of medicine they choose in an environment that they prefer.

While the path toward becoming a physician is difficult and lengthy, the resulting career can be quite fulfilling. Nearly all doctors earn impressive salaries ranging, on average, from $250,000 to $511,000 per year.

These impressive salaries sometimes reflect demanding hours and work environments such as emergency rooms. Doctors may also have amassed sizable student loan debt.

Doctors specializing in certain areas of medicine report more satisfaction with their jobs than others. Dermatologists and ophthalmologists report higher levels of satisfaction than doctors in fields such as rheumatology and internal medicine.

Learn more about this question

Is it hard to become a physician?

Yes, it is hard to become a physician. Becoming a physician requires intense study and will take approximately ten to 14 years. There are many types of physicians, and while all have unique characteristics, the road to becoming a doctor is challenging.

Candidates interested in becoming a doctor must earn a bachelor's degree and then take the MCAT test. This test determines whether or not you will be accepted into a medical school. Approximately 42% of those who apply to medical school are accepted. Once accepted, 80% to 90% of medical students graduate.

After graduation from medical school, these doctors in training must complete a residency. They will work within a specific field of medicine for anywhere from two to five years. It is at this point that a doctor can choose to practice independently or fulfill a role in a hospital or clinic. The process of becoming a physician is lengthy and difficult.

Learn more about this question

What degree do you need to be a physician?

Physicians need multiple degrees that span from ten to 14 years before practicing independently. There are three stages and two degrees involved in becoming a physician.

Candidates interested in becoming a doctor must first obtain a bachelor's degree in biology or pre-med. This degree will prepare them for the MCAT or medical school entrance exam. Approximately 42% of those applying to medical schools are accepted.

Graduation from medical school is the next step and represents an additional four years after earning the bachelor's degree. At this stage, the candidate is considered a doctor by title but is unable to practice medicine.

After graduating from medical school, aspiring doctors must fulfill a residency. Here they will specialize in a field within medicine and work within that field. Residencies last between two and five years, depending on the area of specialization. After multiple degrees and specialized training, a doctor may begin practicing.

Learn more about this question

What is the difference between a doctor and a clinician?

The difference between a doctor and a clinician is in their level of education. Simply put, clinicians are all healthcare providers who deal directly with patients, while doctors are clinicians who focus on a particular specialty involving non-surgical treatment.

The clinician is a general term that encompasses every medical position that involves patients; therefore, the responsibilities for clinicians vary depending on the job title. Clinicians can be medical assistants, doctors, counselors, psychiatrists, etc.

On the other hand, doctors fulfill these responsibilities by providing medical care to patients, giving medical advice on what habits the patient must change to improve their health, and prescribing medicines to reduce illnesses or prevent them from occurring.

Clinicians are responsible for providing healthcare, treatment, and support to patients with varying ailments or diseases and support to prevent diseases.

One type of clinician is a registered nurse, whose duties are focused on the initial diagnostic procedure and the observation and assistance of patients. Surgeons are clinicians with more advanced responsibilities, such as treating injuries with surgical procedures.

Doctors instead focus on performing non-surgical diagnostic procedures and treatments in patients. General physicians are usually primary care doctors who treat varying illnesses and give checkups on a somewhat regular basis.

Psychiatrists focus on mental health and provide psychotherapy and medication to their patients. Regardless of specialty, physicians are consulted to regularly observe and track the status of a patient's health.

Learn more about this question

What is the difference between a physician and a doctor?

The difference between a physician and a doctor has to do with their area of specialized education. Physicians are medical doctors, while others holding the title doctor may work in a variety of fields.

A physician is someone who has earned a doctoral degree (PHD) in medicine. These individuals are specialized in one area of medicine, such as cardiology or pediatrics, and completed a medical residency in that field.

A doctor refers to anyone having earned a PHD in any number of fields. Not all areas of academic study offer doctoral degrees or PHD's, but many fields do. The title of doctor is given to anyone earning this top degree in their particular field of study.

Many professors in academia hold the title of doctor as they have studied extensively in a specific area and earned their PHD.

Learn more about this question

What kind of doctor is a physician?

A physician is a doctor who is specialized in the study of medicine. All physicians are doctors, while not all doctors are physicians.

A physician is a practicing medical doctor who has earned a PHD in medicine and specializes in one specific area. Physicians must serve a residency after earning their doctoral degree in order to hone their skills and knowledge in this field.

A doctor refers to anyone having earned a PHD in any number of fields. Not all areas of academic study offer doctoral degrees or PHD's, but many fields do. The title of doctor is given to anyone earning this top degree in their particular field of study.

Many professors in academia hold the title of doctor as they have studied extensively in a specific area and earned their PHD.

Learn more about this question

Search For Physician Jobs

0 selections
0 selections