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Become A Chemistry Technologist

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Working As A Chemistry Technologist

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

  • Stressful

  • $41,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Chemistry Technologist 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 A Chemistry Technologist

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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Chemistry Technologist Career Paths

Chemistry Technologist
Chemist Scientist
Senior Scientist
9 Yearsyrs
Chemist Scientist Senior Scientist
Principal Scientist
12 Yearsyrs
Chemist Analytical Chemist
Senior Chemist
7 Yearsyrs
Quality Assurance Technician Quality Assurance Supervisor
Quality Assurance Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Quality Assurance Technician Quality Assurance Supervisor Quality Assurance Manager
Director Of Quality
14 Yearsyrs
Quality Assurance Technician Quality Assurance Supervisor Quality Manager
Plant Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Quality Control Analyst Analyst Project Manager
Purchasing Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Quality Control Analyst Research Associate Scientist
Senior Research Associate
6 Yearsyrs
Quality Control Analyst Research Associate
Laboratory Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Generalist Specialist Field Service Technician
Technical Services Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Generalist Team Leader Production Supervisor
Quality Supervisor
7 Yearsyrs
Generalist Specialist Quality Assurance Specialist
Quality Control Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Analyst Engineer Research And Development Engineer
Research And Development Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Analyst Quality Assurance Analyst Quality Assurance Manager
Regulatory Affairs Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Quality Control Chemist Analytical Chemist Laboratory Manager
Laboratory Director
9 Yearsyrs
Quality Control Chemist Research And Development Scientist
Scientist Senior, Research And Development
9 Yearsyrs
Quality Control Chemist Senior Chemist Senior Scientist
Lead Scientist
7 Yearsyrs
Research Associate Clinical Research Coordinator Regulatory Affairs Specialist
Regulatory Compliance Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Research Technician Microbiologist
Senior Microbiologist
5 Yearsyrs
Research Technician Research Fellow Staff Scientist
Senior Associate Scientist
7 Yearsyrs
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Average Length of Employment
Chemist 3.5 years
Chemical Analyst 3.1 years
Associate Chemist 3.0 years
Laboratory Analyst 2.9 years
Laboratory Chemist 2.8 years
Top Careers Before Chemistry Technologist
Internship 8.7%
Chemist 7.4%
Technician 3.4%
Cashier 3.4%
Generalist 3.2%
Supervisor 2.8%
Researcher 2.8%
Top Careers After Chemistry Technologist
Chemist 13.0%
Generalist 3.5%
Supervisor 3.3%
Internship 2.8%
Technician 2.6%

Do you work as a Chemistry Technologist?

Average Yearly Salary
$41,000
Show Salaries
$29,000
Min 10%
$41,000
Median 50%
$41,000
Median 50%
$41,000
Median 50%
$41,000
Median 50%
$41,000
Median 50%
$41,000
Median 50%
$41,000
Median 50%
$58,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Exelon
Highest Paying City
Monroeville, PA
Highest Paying State
Maine
Avg Experience Level
3.4 years
How much does a Chemistry Technologist make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Chemistry Technologist in the United States is $41,742 per year or $20 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $29,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $58,000.

Top Skills for A Chemistry Technologist

  1. Lab Equipment
  2. Organic Chemistry
  3. Analytical Methods
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Maintained and calibrated lab equipment.
  • Determined the physical and chemical properties of compounds using quantitative and qualitative analyses in physical, organic, or inorganic chemistry.
  • Train colleagues from Ghana, Ethiopia, and China on current analytical methods and techniques.
  • Used various instruments including UV-Vis, FTIR, Karl Fischer, pH Meter, Oxygen Sensor.
  • Conducted GC analysis of petroleum hydrocarbons and HPLC analysis of pesticides.

Rank:

Average Salary:

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Top 10 Best States for Chemistry Technologists

  1. Maine
  2. New Hampshire
  3. Pennsylvania
  4. Michigan
  5. Arkansas
  6. Wisconsin
  7. Oregon
  8. Tennessee
  9. Alabama
  10. Texas
  • (39 jobs)
  • (50 jobs)
  • (168 jobs)
  • (114 jobs)
  • (34 jobs)
  • (96 jobs)
  • (59 jobs)
  • (89 jobs)
  • (53 jobs)
  • (311 jobs)

Chemistry Technologist Demographics

Gender

Male

45.9%

Female

42.8%

Unknown

11.2%
Ethnicity

White

60.6%

Hispanic or Latino

14.9%

Black or African American

10.4%

Asian

10.3%

Unknown

3.7%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

66.7%

Vietnamese

6.7%

Romanian

6.7%

French

6.7%

Cantonese

6.7%

Mandarin

6.7%
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Chemistry Technologist Education

Schools

University of California - Irvine

9.1%

University of Phoenix

9.1%

University of Texas at San Antonio

8.2%

University of Florida

8.2%

University of North Carolina at Greensboro

4.5%

Rochester Institute of Technology

4.5%

Metropolitan State University of Denver

4.5%

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

4.5%

University of Missouri - Saint Louis

4.5%

Nicholls State University

4.5%

Oregon State University

4.5%

University of North Carolina at Wilmington

4.5%

University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point

3.6%

North Carolina State University

3.6%

Community College of the Air Force

3.6%

San Diego State University

3.6%

University of California - Davis

3.6%

University of Louisville

3.6%

University of Missouri - Columbia

3.6%

University of Houston

3.6%
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Majors

Chemistry

28.2%

Biology

21.1%

Biochemistry, Biophysics, Molecular Biology

6.8%

Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science

5.9%

Business

5.4%

Medical Technician

5.2%

Environmental Science

3.0%

Microbiology

2.8%

Education

2.6%

Ecology, Population Biology, And Epidemiology

2.4%

Chemical Engineering

2.3%

Criminal Justice

1.9%

Pharmacy

1.7%

Biotechnology

1.7%

Nursing

1.6%

Cell Biology And Anatomical Science

1.6%

Psychology

1.6%

Health Care Administration

1.6%

Materials Sciences

1.4%

Public Health

1.2%
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Degrees

Bachelors

54.2%

Masters

17.7%

Other

11.0%

Associate

8.1%

Doctorate

4.2%

Certificate

3.9%

License

0.6%

Diploma

0.4%
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