How to Describe Jobs in English

Describing jobs in English or the responsibilities that you have in a certain job requires that you know how to make simple sentences in English.

The tense which is used the most to describe jobs in English is the Simple Present

With the simple present, you can make sentences like this:

  1. I work as a dentist
  2. I fix old cars
  3. I inspect sites
  4. I help all kinds of patients

Before we start describing the task people do in certain jobs, let’s reviews some of the most common occupations

Jobs in English – Medicine

These are some of the most common jobs in medicine

physicianeye specialist
family doctorear specialist
general practitionerheart specialist

Art and Creative Work

These are some of the most common jobs in Art and creative work

ArtistFashion Designer
PainterGraphic Designer
Singer Guitarist

Law and Order

These are some of the most common jobs related to protect and serve

LawyerBody Guard
AttorneyPrison Guard
DetectivePolice Officer
Traffic Officer

Management and Financial Activities

These are some of the most common jobs related to management and financial activities

InspectorBank Clerk

Jobs and Occupations with Descriptions

These are some of the descriptions of the most common jobs.

  • Accountant – a person that keeps financial records
  • Actor /Actress – a person that acts in a play or a movie
  • Architect – a person that designs buildings and houses.
  • Astronomer – a person who studies the stars and the universe
  • Author – A person who writes books
  • Baker – A person who makes bread
  • Bus driver – a person that drives buses.
  • Butcher – a person that cut the meat and sells it
  • Carpenter – a person that makes things from wood including houses and furniture.
  • Chef/Cook – a person that prepared food for others, often in a restaurant or café.
  • Cleaner – a person that cleans an area or place 
  • Dentist – a person that can fix problems you have with your teeth.
  • Designer – a person who has the job of designing things.
  • Doctor – a person you who cures health problems
  • Dustman/Refuse collector – a person that collects trash from bins in the street.
  • Electrician – a person that works with electric circuits.
  • Factory worker – a person that works in a factory.
  • Farmer – a person that works on a farm, usually with animals.
  • Fireman/Firefighter – a person that puts out fires.
  • Fisherman – a person that catches fish
  • Gardener – a person that keeps gardens clean and takes care of the plants 
  • Hairdresser – they cut your hair or give it a new style.
  • Journalist – a person that makes new reports in writing or through television.
  • Judge – a qualified person that decides cases in a law court.
  • Lifeguard – a person that saves lives where people swim 
  • Mechanic – a person that repairs machines, especially car motors.
  • Model – a person that works in fashion, modeling clothes and accessories.
  • Nurse – a person who helps  doctor look after the sick people.
  • Optician – a person that checks your eyes and try and correct any problems with them
  • Painter – a person that paints the interior and exterior of buildings.
  • Pharmacist – a qualified person that dispenses medicines
  • Photographer – a person that takes photos.
  • Pilot – a person who flies a plane.
  • Plumber – a person that repairs your water systems or pipes.
  • Politician – a person who works in politics.
  • Policeman/Policewoman – a person who tries to prevent crime
  • Postman – a person that delivers mail to your house.
  • Real estate agent – a person that sells properties
  • Receptionist – a person that welcomes visitors and gives information
  • Scientist – a person who does experiments
  • Tailor – a person that makes clothes for others.
  • Taxi driver – a person who drives a taxi.
  • Teacher – a person that teaches classes at school
  • Translator – a person that translates from one language to another.
  • Travel agent – a person that organizes and sells holidays and flights for others.
  • Veterinary doctor (Vet) – a qualified person that looks after sick animals.
  • Waiter/Waitress – a person that works in a food outlet, looking after customers and serving food.

Questions and Answers about Jobs

These are some common questions and answers

  • Where do you work?
  • I work for  Microsoft
  • I work at Google INC
  • Where do you do there?
  • What do you do exactly?
  • I design websites
  • What do you do as a receptionist for Microsoft?
  • I take calls and sometimes I take notes during meetings
  • What do you usually do at the Bank?
  • As a bank teller, I help people with transactions.

Describing what Other People do

These are some sentences to describe what other people do:

  • She takes calls
  • She answers emails
  • She manages people
  • She makes cakes
  • She prepares food
  • He designs websites
  • He keeps financial records
  • He sells properties
  • He takes calls
  • They make bread
  • They sell clothing
  • They make calls
  • They train athletes
  • Maria sells properties (She)
  • Mario plays soccer (He)
  • Mario and Maria manage a small company (They)

Now these are negative sentences

  • They don’t make bread
  • They don’t sell clothing
  • They don’t train athletes
  • Maria doesn’t sell properties
  • Maria doesn’t play soccer
  • She doesn’t make clothes

This is how you make questions

  • Does she make bread?
  • Does she play soccer?
  • Does she train athletes?
  • Does he take calls?
  • Does he make cakes?
  • Does he cook?

Sample Lesson to Teach about Jobs

If you are a teacher, this is a sample lesson that you can use to teach about jobs

Schema Activation (5 Mins)

  1. The teacher shows a collage made of different jobs and occupations and students identify the professions included there.

Pre-Task #1 = ( 20 Mins)

  1. The teacher uses this Quizlet set about occupations to review jobs and professions vocabulary.
  2. Then the teacher gives students matching to students to complete in pairs.
  3. Student A is given a list of occupations.
  4. Student B is given job descriptions
  5. Students don’t show their sheets of paper to their partners and complete the matching using their listening and speaking skills

Pre-Task #2 = ( 20 Mins)

  1. Students are sent a dialogue, they read it once.
  2. Once students read it once, students delete two words from the dialogue and pass it to another group.
  3. Once students practice the dialogue again, they delete three words from the dialogue and pass it to another group.
  4. Then four and then five.
  5. By the time this is over, students have to remember most key expressions.

Pre-Task #3 = ( 20 Mins)

Listen for main ideas

  1. The teacher sends an audio recording to students.
  2. Students listen to the listening passage at least two or three times and write in their notebooks the professions and descriptions mentioned in it.

Main Task (20 Mins)

Create a company and talk about the different professions that are part of the company:

  1. Students make groups of four to talk about a company, they create the name of the company first.
  2. They must assign a role within the company  to every member of the group
  3. Every group member must say at least four job responsibilities they have.

Post-Task (15 Mins)

Speaking about jobs

  1. Students make four to five groups.
  2. Every member of the group think about two jobs responsibilities.
  3. Once they have it ready, they record their professions and their responsibilities.

Manuel Campos, English Professor

Manuel Campos

I am Jose Manuel, English professor and creator of, a blog whose mission is to share lessons for those who want to learn and improve their English