Survey Technician: Job Description, Duties and Requirements

Survey technicians assist surveyors and other mapmakers in obtaining and computing data relevant to measuring the Earth's features. They may work for a construction company, municipality or state government. Their job typically requires a bachelor's degree in surveying as well as licensure from the state in which they want to work.

View 1 Popular School »

Survey Technician Job Description

Survey technicians help measure and map the Earth's land and other natural features. They collect field data to report back to surveyors and other mapmaking professionals. Most of their data collection is captured through global positioning or geographical information systems. Whether they're working indoors or outdoors, survey technicians gather vital data used for the creation of topographical maps.

Survey Technician Job Duties

Survey technicians set up, adjust and operate the equipment used at surveying job sites. They measure, record and calculate data based on readings from those instruments. They lie out and recover markings, stakes and other such signifiers at work locations. They help create drawings and computer images of the locations they're assigned to. They may also assist in directing other members of surveying teams.

Requirements of a Survey Technician

Education

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that many employers require survey technicians to have earned a bachelor's degree in the field (www.bls.gov). A number of universities offer surveying programs, which teach the principles of the field, as well as the technology behind it. Students learn how to collect data, create maps and manage survey projects.

According to the BLS, technician jobs are typically entry-level positions for surveyors with formal education. As they learn skills on the job, they may be able to advance to a senior technician. Further advancement awaits those with significant work experience or certification in the profession. Voluntary certification as a Certified Survey Technician is available through the National Society of Professional Surveyors.

Licensure

Every state requires survey technicians to be licensed, although licensing specifics may differ slightly. The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) outlines a 4-step national licensing process that prospective survey technicians generally follow. They must first complete the appropriate level of education, which can range from a high school diploma to a bachelor's degree. Passing a Fundamentals of Surveying exam is next, followed by gaining the necessary amount of work experience, which is usually four years. With field experience, technicians must then pass the NCEES' Principles and Practices of Surveying exam.

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

The BLS projected jobs for survey technicians to grow 14% from 2012-2022, which was close to the average for all other careers. Advances in mapping technology will be the primary reason for job growth. As of May 2013, surveying and mapping technicians earned an average wage of $43,540 annually, according to the BLS.

Show me popular schools

Related to Survey Technician: Job Description, Duties and Requirements

  • Related
  • Recently Updated
  • Popular
How a Government Shutdown Might Impact Education

Partisan disputes over budgeting issues threatened to 'shut down' the government late last week. Fortunately, Congress and...

Student Government Gender Gap

From Hillary Clinton to Sarah Palin, women today are vying for the most prominent positions in American national politics since...

Learn About Construction in the Blogosphere: 10 Top Construction Blogs

Whether you're a layperson looking for a little advice for that DIY home repair project or a construction professional...

PhD in Construction: Program Information

Learn about the curriculum for a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Construction Management program. Read on to find out about...

Top Schools for Construction Management, Carpentry & Inspection Programs

Popular School

Other Schools:

  • School locations:
    • Florida (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Florida include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Post Master's Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Engineering
      • Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering
      • Biological and Agricultural Engineering
      • Biomedical and Medical Engineering
      • Chemical Engineering
      • Civil Engineering
      • Computer Engineering
      • Electrical Engineering and Electronics
      • Environmental Engineering
      • Materials Engineering
      • Math
      • Mechanical Engineering
      • Nuclear Engineering
      • Ocean Engineering
      • Surveying
      • Systems Engineering
  • School locations:
    • Wyoming (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Wyoming include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Non-Degree: Certificate
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Engineering
      • Chemical Engineering
      • Civil Engineering
      • Computer Engineering
      • Electrical Engineering and Electronics
      • Engineering - Architectural
      • Environmental Engineering
      • Math
      • Mechanical Engineering
      • Petroleum Engineering
      • Surveying
  • School locations:
    • Alabama (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Troy University include:
      • Graduate: Master
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Engineering
      • Math
      • Surveying
  • School locations:
    • Colorado (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Metropolitan State College of Denver include:
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Engineering
      • Civil Engineering
      • Electrical Engineering and Electronics
      • Math
      • Mechanical Engineering
      • Surveying
  • School locations:
    • Michigan (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Ferris State University include:
      • Graduate: First Professional Degree, Master
      • Non-Degree: Certificate, Coursework
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Engineering
      • Civil Engineering
      • Drafting and Design Engineering
      • Electrical Engineering and Electronics
      • Engineering - Architectural
      • Environmental Engineering
      • Industrial Engineering
      • Manufacturing Engineering
      • Math
      • Mechanical Engineering
      • Plastics Engineering
      • Surveying
  • School locations:
    • Massachusetts (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Northeastern University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Non-Degree: Coursework, Diploma
      • Post Degree Certificate: Post Master's Certificate, Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Engineering
      • Chemical Engineering
      • Civil Engineering
      • Computer Engineering
      • Electrical Engineering and Electronics
      • Environmental Engineering
      • Industrial Engineering
      • Manufacturing Engineering
      • Math
      • Mechanical Engineering
      • Surveying
  • School locations:
    • Minnesota (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Saint Cloud State University include:
      • Graduate: Master
      • Non-Degree: Certificate
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Engineering
      • Computer Engineering
      • Electrical Engineering and Electronics
      • Industrial Engineering
      • Math
      • Mechanical Engineering
      • Surveying
  • School locations:
    • North Carolina (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at North Carolina A & T State University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Engineering
      • Biological and Agricultural Engineering
      • Chemical Engineering
      • Civil Engineering
      • Computer Engineering
      • Electrical Engineering and Electronics
      • Engineering - Architectural
      • Engineering Physics
      • Industrial Engineering
      • Math
      • Mechanical Engineering
      • Surveying
  • School locations:
    • Tennessee (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at East Tennessee State University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Engineering
      • Math
      • Surveying

Popular Schools

Avg. Wages For Related Jobs

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics