Surveying Technician

What does a Surveying and Mapping Technician do? Surveying and..

Surveying Technician

What does a Surveying and Mapping Technician do?

surveying technician

Surveying and mapping technicians assists photogrammetrists, surveyors, and cartographers by collecting data and making maps of the Earth’s surface. Surveying techs visit locations to take measurements of the land while a mapping technician uses geographic information to produce maps.

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How to Become a Surveying and Mapping Technician

A surveying technician requires a high school diploma. However, some survey techs hold postsecondary training in survey technology. Surveying technicians learn their trade under the supervision of a surveyor or a surveying party chief beginning with simple duties like entering data into computers and working up to helping with decisions on how and where to measure the land.

Mapping technicians usually require a formal education after completing high school in technology applications, like Geographic Information Systems (GIS), as well as receiving on-the-job training under a lead map supervisor. In this phase, they learn how maps are stored and created in databases.

Certification has become increasing needed and is offered by The American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS) for photogrammetrist technologists, remote-sensing technologists, and Geographic Information System/Land Information System (GIS/LIS)technologists.

The National Society of Professional Surveyors offers the Certified Survey Technician credential. High school students that may wish to pursue this occupation should take classes in algebra, geometry, trigonometry, drafting, mechanical drawing, and computer science to have the best advantage of gaining employment.

Job Description of a Surveying and Mapping Technician

A surveying technician has the duties of going to job site locations to record survey measurements, as well as other data with teams of survey parties. They collect data on location by operating surveying instruments, like electronic distance-measuring equipment.

He or she would set out and mark stakes to conduct a survey and search for previous survey points. They enter the data found from surveying instruments into computers. A mapping technician’s job is to help a photogrammetrist and cartographer produce and upgrade maps by selecting information from data bases and editing and processing images collected in the field. He or she produces maps outlining boundaries, elevation, water location and other terrain features. They also ensure accuracy of maps by updating them and identify areas not captured by aerial photography by laying out the aerial photographs in sequence.

Both a surveying and mapping technician should be skilled in decision making, problem solving, concentration and listening, as well as have physical stamina due to rugged terrain, long hours on ones feet, and carrying heavy field equipment.


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