The Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) system is used by US Federal statistical agencies to classify workers into occupational categories for the purpose of collecting, calculating, or disseminating data. All workers are classified into one of about 800 detailed occupations according to their occupational definition. To facilitate classification, detailed occupations are combined to form about 450 broad occupations, about 95 minor groups, and 24 major groups. Detailed occupations in the SOC with similar job duties, and in some cases skills, education, and/or training, are grouped together.
The SOC system uses hyphenated codes to divide occupations into four levels: major groups, minor groups, broad occupations, and detailed occupations.
29-0000: Healthcare practitioners and technical occupations (major group)
29-1000: Health diagnosing and treating practitioners (minor group)
29-1020: Dentists (broad occupation)
29-1021: Dentists, general (detailed occupation)
The SOC classification system was updated in 2018, and Lightcast began using this 2018 SOC version in 2022 when OEWS, our source for occupational earnings data, started using this SOC version.
For more information on Lightcast’s use of SOC codes (including departures from the standard classification), see this article.