Cosmologists study the physical universe as a whole. They want to know how the universe was formed what role human beings play in the overall scheme of things and what the future of the universe will be like.
According to the website Wisegeek.com in recent years cosmology has come to be considered a science and cosmologists focus on testing theories about the universe.
One of the theories most widely known by both scientists and average non-cosmologist humans is the "Big Bang Theory." Cosmologists have been studying this theory for decades so that once and for all it can be either proven or dis-proven as the event that caused the universe to originally form and expand. Cosmologists have backgrounds in physics and astronomy and they use high powered telescopes and radio telescopes to study the formation movement and destruction of celestial matter. They conduct some of their research in scientific laboratories using equipment such as particle accelerators.
Aspiring cosmologists need to have a solid background in science preferably starting in high school. As undergraduates they often major in astronomy physics or astrophysics. Most cosmologists do graduate work and end up at colleges and universities doing both teaching and research. However some cosmologists work for private science organizations or government agencies such as the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
The website Simplyhired.com says that cosmologists earn an average annual salary of approximately $69000 though this can vary depending upon location employer and experience.