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Geotechnician

Alternative titles for this job include Geotechnical lab technician

Geotechnicians collect and analyse geological data from rock, soil and water samples.

Average salary (a year)

£15,000 Starter

to

£31,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

38 to 40 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends occasionally

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become a geotechnician

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role

University

You'll normally need a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree to get into this career. Relevant subjects include:

  • geoscience
  • geology
  • environmental science
  • Earth sciences

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English, maths and science
  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree

More Information

College

You could do a college course, which would teach you some of the skills and knowledge you need in this job. Relevant subjects include:

  • Level 3 Certificate in Laboratory Technical Skills
  • Level 3 or 4 Diploma in Laboratory and Associated Technical Activities

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English, maths and science

More Information

Apprenticeship

You may be able to get into this role through an advanced laboratory technician apprenticeship.

This apprenticeship takes 24 months to complete.

Entry requirements

To get onto an apprenticeship, you'll find it useful to have:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship

More Information

Work

You may be able to start as a junior technician with an organisation and work your way up.

To do this, you'll need a minimum of 5 GCSEs grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), and 2 A levels, including maths and sciences. Equivalent qualifications may be accepted like the Level 3 Diploma in Applied Science.

Volunteering

Work experience in the field or a laboratory may give you an advantage when applying for courses and jobs. For example, you could join your local geological group or contact companies listed in The Geologist Directory to find out about work placement opportunities.

The Geological Society has information about getting work experience.

More Information

Professional and industry bodies

You can get recognition of your technical skills by registering with the Science Council as a Registered Science Technician (RSciTech).

Further information

You can get more advice about careers and training in geoscience from The Geological Society.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • maths knowledge
  • knowledge of engineering science and technology
  • analytical thinking skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • the ability to think clearly using logic and reasoning
  • knowledge of geography
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

Restrictions and Requirements

Being able to drive may be an advantage in roles where you need to visit sites.

Having a Construction Skills Certification scheme (CSCS) card, though not essential, is useful if you are working for geotechnical companies that specialise in work for construction projects.

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

You could:

  • prepare rock, soil and water samples for testing
  • analyse the chemical and physical properties of samples
  • obtain and process geophysical data
  • log well and borehole drilling activity
  • interpret data from seismic surveys
  • prepare geological maps
  • support teaching staff in university
  • train and supervise staff
  • produce reports for engineers and scientists

Working environment

You could work in a laboratory or visit sites.

Your working environment may be outdoors some of the time and dirty.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could train as a geoscientist.

You could also move into management, environmental engineering work, or become a laboratory technician or science teacher in a school, college or university.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Laboratory Technician Apprentice

  • Wage: £15,000.00 Annually
  • Location: Worthing

Apprentice Environmental Monitoring Technician

  • Wage: £195.62 Weekly
  • Location: Sheffield

Courses In England

Geology

  • Provider: HAVANT AND SOUTH DOWNS COLLEGE
  • Start date: 05 September 2022
  • Location: Havant

Geology

  • Provider: QUEEN ELIZABETH'S GRAMMAR SCHOOL, HORNCASTLE
  • Start date: 01 September 2022
  • Location: Horncastle

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