Geospatial technician apprenticeships - where to start
You can get into this job through
a university coursea college coursean apprenticeshipa graduate training schemethe armed forces
You could do a degree in:
- surveying and mapping
- geographic information science
- earth sciences
- computer science
You'll usually need 3 A levels, or equivalent, including at least 1 science.
You can take a college course, to learn some of the skills needed for the job, which may help when applying for a trainee position. Relevant courses include:
- Level 3 Diploma in Engineering Surveying
- Level 3 Diploma in Civil Engineering for Technicians
- T level in Design, Surveying and Planning
You may need 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English, maths and science for A-Levels or a T Level.
You can work towards this role through a geospatial survey technician Level 3 (advanced) apprenticeship or a geospatial mapping and science specialist degree apprenticeship.
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. You also might need A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship.
You can apply for a graduate training scheme with a geospatial data company if you have a degree.
You can also work towards this role through the armed forces. The Royal Air Force and the British army offer training to become an air cartographer and geographic technician. Many geospatial technicians use specialist software. You could build up your skills and knowledge through free online learning resources.
Professional and industry bodies
You could join the Association for Geographic Information for professional development and training opportunities.
Geospatial technician apprenticeships - what it takes
Skills and knowledge
- knowledge of geography
- analytical thinking skills
- maths knowledge
- complex problem-solving skills
- the ability to use your initiative
- design skills and knowledge
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- excellent verbal communication skills
- to have a thorough understanding of computer systems and applications
Geospatial technician apprenticeships - what you'll do
On a typical day you may:
- add geographic data and satellite imagery to a management system
- use specialist equipment like advanced GPS, laser scanners and drones
- gather visual information like aerial photos, geological surveys and satellite images
- work closely with customers, engineers and project teams
- provide technical GIS reports or drawings to help with business decisions
- identify and correct errors on maps and design drawings
You could work in an office or visit sites.
Career path and progression - Geospatial technician apprenticeships
You can specialise in areas like agriculture, mining, healthcare, urban planning or military intelligence.
After 3 to 5 years of experience, you can become a GIS analyst or geographic information officer.