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Become An Analytical Technician

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Working As An Analytical Technician

  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Getting Information
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Documenting/Recording Information
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Repetitive

  • Stressful

  • $81,877

    Average Salary

What Does An Analytical Technician Do

Chemical technicians use laboratory instruments and techniques to help chemists and chemical engineers research, develop, produce, and test chemical products and processes.

Duties

Chemical technicians typically do the following:

  • Monitor chemical processes and test the quality of products to make sure that they meet standards and specifications
  • Set up and maintain laboratory instruments and equipment
  • Troubleshoot production problems or malfunctioning instruments
  • Prepare chemical solutions
  • Conduct chemical and physical experiments, tests, and analyses for a variety of purposes, including research and development
  • Compile and interpret results of tests and analyses
  • Prepare technical reports, graphs, and charts, and give presentations that summarize their results

Most chemical technicians work on teams. Typically, they are led by chemists or chemical engineers who direct their work and evaluate their results. For example, some chemical technicians help chemists and other scientists develop new medicines. Others help chemical engineers develop more efficient production processes.

Chemical technicians’ duties and titles often depend on where they work. The following are the two main types of chemical technicians:

Laboratory technicians typically help scientists conduct experiments and analyses. Often, they prepare chemical solutions, test products for quality and performance, and analyze compounds produced through complex chemical processes. Chemical laboratory technicians may analyze samples of air and water to monitor pollution levels. Laboratory technicians usually set up and maintain laboratory equipment and instruments.

Processing technicians monitor the quality of products and processes at chemical manufacturing facilities. For example, they adjust processing equipment to improve production efficiency and output. They also collect samples from production batches, which then are tested for impurities and other defects. In addition, processing technicians test product packaging to make sure that it is well designed, will hold up well, and will have a limited impact on the environment.

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How To Become An Analytical Technician

Chemical technicians need an associate’s degree or 2 years of postsecondary education for most jobs. Most chemical technicians also receive on-the-job training.

Education

For most jobs, chemical technicians need an associate’s degree in applied science or chemical technology or 2 years of postsecondary education.

Many technical and community colleges offer programs in applied sciences or chemical technology. Students typically take classes in mathematics, physics, and biology, in addition to chemistry courses. Coursework in statistics and computer science is also useful, because technicians routinely do data analysis and modeling.

One of the most important aspects of any degree program is laboratory time. Laboratory coursework provides students with hands-on experience in conducting experiments and using various instruments and techniques properly. Many schools also offer internships and cooperative-education programs that help students gain employment experience while attending school.

Important Qualities

Ability to use technology. Chemical technicians must be able to set up and operate sophisticated equipment and instruments. They also may need to adjust the equipment to ensure that experiments and processes are running properly and safely.

Analytical skills. Chemical technicians must be able to conduct scientific experiments with accuracy and precision.

Communication skills. Chemical technicians must explain their work to scientists and engineers, and to workers who may not have a technical background. They often write reports to communicate their results.

Critical-thinking skills. Chemical technicians reach their conclusions through sound reasoning and judgment.

Interpersonal skills. Chemical technicians must be able to work well with others as part of a team because they often work with scientists, engineers, and other technicians.

Observation skills. Chemical technicians must carefully monitor chemical experiments and processes. They must keep complete records of their work, including conditions, procedures, and results.

Time-management skills. Chemical technicians often work on multiple tasks and projects at the same time and must be able to prioritize their assignments.

Training

Most chemical technicians receive on-the-job training. Typically, experienced technicians teach new employees proper methods and procedures for conducting experiments and operating equipment. The length of training varies with the new employee’s level of experience and education and the industry the worker is employed in.

Advancement

Technicians who have a bachelor’s degree may advance to positions as chemical engineers or chemists. For more information, see the profiles on chemical engineers and chemists and materials scientists.

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Analytical Technician Demographics

Gender

Male

54.3%

Female

44.1%

Unknown

1.7%
Ethnicity

White

62.0%

Hispanic or Latino

13.3%

Black or African American

11.9%

Asian

9.4%

Unknown

3.5%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

French

21.1%

Spanish

21.1%

German

10.5%

Marathi

10.5%

Hindi

10.5%

Gujarati

5.3%

Carrier

5.3%

Armenian

5.3%

Russian

5.3%

Italian

5.3%
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Analytical Technician Education

Schools

Michigan State University

8.1%

Central Michigan University

6.5%

Valdosta State University

6.5%

University of North Carolina at Greensboro

6.5%

Purdue University

6.5%

Louisiana State University and A&M College

4.8%

Stautzenberger College

4.8%

Georgia Southern University

4.8%

Saginaw Valley State University

4.8%

Brazosport College

4.8%

Rochester Institute of Technology

4.8%

Iowa State University

4.8%

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

4.8%

University of Arizona

4.8%

University of Toledo

4.8%

University of Puerto Rico - Arecibo

4.8%

University of Florida

3.2%

University of Nevada - Reno

3.2%

Wiregrass Georgia Technical College

3.2%

University of Massachusetts - Boston

3.2%
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Majors

Chemistry

30.6%

Biology

16.7%

Business

7.9%

Biochemistry, Biophysics, Molecular Biology

5.6%

Chemical Engineering

4.2%

Medical Assisting Services

3.2%

Chemical Technology

3.2%

Pharmacy

2.8%

Nursing

2.8%

Microbiology

2.3%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.3%

Mechanical Engineering

2.3%

Environmental Science

2.3%

Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science

2.3%

Engineering

2.3%

Management

1.9%

Accounting

1.9%

Computer Science

1.9%

Pharmacology

1.9%

Communication

1.9%
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Degrees

Bachelors

51.2%

Masters

17.4%

Other

13.7%

Associate

11.5%

Certificate

2.2%

Doctorate

2.2%

Diploma

1.9%
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Full Time
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Real Analytical Technician Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Specialty Gas Analytical Technician Alexander Chemical Corp. Kingsbury, IN Sep 15, 2016 $64,917
Senior Analytical Technician Polyone Corporation Maryland Heights, MO Nov 21, 2014 $40,914 -
$57,720
Analytical Technician Bristol-Myers Squibb Company Manat, PR Sep 17, 2010 $40,192
Analytical Technician Global Pharmatek, LLC Durham, NC Mar 17, 2014 $37,000

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Top Skills for An Analytical Technician

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  1. Lab
  2. Methods
  3. Procedures
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Managed day to day operation of laboratory activities, including training and scheduling of technicians supporting the solvent coating operation.
  • Developed methods that reduced analysis time by 20% for several products.
  • Prepare and writes numerous standard operational procedures, and casualty control procedures.
  • Performed HPLC and ICP characterization of azoles and other heterocyclic ring compounds.
  • Utilized, SPE, HPLC, GC/MS and spectroscopic techniques to support product development efforts.

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Top 10 Best States for Analytical Technicians

  1. Alaska
  2. Louisiana
  3. Delaware
  4. Texas
  5. Oklahoma
  6. Massachusetts
  7. Alabama
  8. New Jersey
  9. North Dakota
  10. West Virginia
  • (18 jobs)
  • (45 jobs)
  • (13 jobs)
  • (302 jobs)
  • (36 jobs)
  • (135 jobs)
  • (56 jobs)
  • (138 jobs)
  • (21 jobs)
  • (13 jobs)

Top Analytical Technician Employers

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Jobs From Top Analytical Technician Employers

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