Surveying & Mapping Technicians
Also called: Engineering Technician, Mapping Technician, Photogrammetric Technician, Survey Technician
Produced by CareerOneStop
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Calculating the curve for a new road… locating a mine… or finding the boundaries on a piece of property… all rely on the efforts of surveying and mapping technicians, who collect data and make maps of the Earth’s surface. Surveying technicians help surveyors and engineers take—and document— measurements of the land. They place stakes and search for previous survey points such as stone markers. Surveying technicians typically work full time, outdoors, in all types of weather. They stand for long periods, and may walk and climb hills carrying heavy instruments. They may need to commute long distances, or even relocate to a worksite temporarily. Mapping technicians help cartographers and photogrammetrists create maps from information databases, as well as edit and process images collected from the field. Mapping technicians typically work full time. They generally use computers in office environments, and may travel to courthouses or lawyers’ offices for research resources. Some specialize in Geographic Information Systems —or GIS— to convert data about a location into a digital format for wider use. Most surveying and mapping technicians work for engineering, surveying and mapping firms or for local government in the highway or planning department. Most surveying technicians have a high school diploma or equivalent, and learn on the job from a surveyor. Mapping technicians need experience with GIS, and often have a related associate’s or bachelor’s degree.
What they do:Perform surveying and mapping duties, usually under the direction of an engineer, surveyor, cartographer, or photogrammetrist, to obtain data used for construction, mapmaking, boundary location, mining, or other purposes. May calculate mapmaking information and create maps from source data, such as surveying notes, aerial photography, satellite data, or other maps to show topographical features, political boundaries, and other features. May verify accuracy and completeness of maps.
On the job, you would:
- Position and hold the vertical rods, or targets, that theodolite operators use for sighting to measure angles, distances, and elevations.
- Check all layers of maps to ensure accuracy, identifying and marking errors and making corrections.
- Design or develop information databases that include geographic or topographic data.
Engineering and Technology
- computers and electronics
- product and service development
Math and Science
- arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics
Arts and Humanities
- English language
- customer service
- reading work related information
- thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem
- noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it
- read and understand what is written
- communicate by speaking
- choose the right type of math to solve a problem
- add, subtract, multiply, or divide
Ideas and Logic
- notice when problems happen
- use rules to solve problems
Hand and Finger Use
- put together small parts with your fingers
People interested in this work like activities that include data, detail, and regular routines.
They do well at jobs that need:
- Attention to Detail
- Analytical Thinking
You might use software like this on the job:
Map creation software
- Mapping software
- Tripod Data Systems COGO