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Chemical Technologists and Technicians

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NOC:2211
Occupation:Chemical Technologists and Technicians
Category:Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology

About the job

Nature of work:

Chemical technologists and technicians provide technical support and services or may work independently in chemical engineering, chemical and biochemical research and analysis, industrial chemistry, chemical quality control and environmental protection. They are employed by research and development and quality control laboratories, consulting engineering companies, in chemical, petrochemical, pharmaceutical and a variety of other manufacturing and processing industries, and by utilities, health, educational and government establishments.

Job duties:
Chemical technologists perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Set up and conduct chemical experiments, tests and analyses using techniques such as chromatography, spectroscopy, physical and chemical separation techniques and microscopy.
  • Operate and maintain laboratory equipment and apparatus and prepare solutions of gas or liquid, reagents, and sample formulations.
  • Compile records and interpret experimental or analytical results.
  • Develop and conduct programs of sampling and analysis to maintain quality standards of raw materials, chemical intermediates and products.
  • Assist in the development of chemical engineering processes, studies of chemical engineering procurement, construction, inspection and maintenance and the development of standards, procedures and health and safety measures.
  • Operate experimental chemical or petrochemical pilot plants.
  • Conduct or assist in air and water quality testing and assessments, environmental monitoring and protection activities, and development of and compliance with standards.
  • Assist in synthesis of small molecules for the purpose of creating drug candidates.
  • Assist in the design and fabrication of experimental apparatus.
Chemical technicians perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Assist in setting up and conducting chemical experiments, tests and analyses.
  • Operate and maintain laboratory equipment and apparatus and prepare solutions of gas and liquid, reagents and sample formulations.
  • Compile records for analytical studies.
  • Assist in developing and conducting programs of sampling and analysis to maintain quality standards.
  • Carry out a limited range of other technical functions in support of chemical research, tests and analyses, and environmental air and water quality monitoring and protection.
  • Assist in the design and fabrication of experimental apparatus.
Sample job titles:
  • biochemistry technologist
  • chemical analyst
  • chemical engineering technologist
  • chemical process analyst
  • chemical research technologist
  • chemical technician
  • food technician
  • geochemical technician
  • pharmaceuticals inspector
  • quality control technician - food processing
Skills:

The skills and aptitudes for these jobs are as varied as the entrance requirements. You should be interested in science and technology and be able to work with detailed processes, machines, and techniques. Familiarity with computers is necessary for some positions. An aptitude for mathematics and the sciences at the high school level is important. Some of these jobs involve exposure to heat, noise, vibration, fumes, and dust, while other jobs are in a relatively clean laboratory environment.

Job requirements:
  • Chemical technologists usually require completion of a two- or three-year college program in chemical, biochemical or chemical engineering technology or a closely related discipline.
  • Chemical technicians usually require completion of a one- or two-year college program in chemical, biochemical or chemical engineering technology.
  • National certification for chemical technologists and technicians is available through the Canadian Society for Chemical Technology.
  • Certification in chemical engineering technology or in a related field is available through provincial associations of engineering/applied science technologists and technicians and may be required by employers.
  • A period of supervised work experience, usually two years, is required before certification.
Other considerations:

Considerable mobility is possible among jobs within this occupational group. Progression to managerial positions is possible with experience. Some chemical technologists and technicians working in support of fundamental research in chemistry or biochemistry are university graduates.

Labour Market Information

Work Prospects:Fair

The employment outlook over the next few years for this occupational group is “average”, which indicates the chances of a qualified individual finding work is comparable to the average for all occupations in Nova Scotia. This is not a large occupation in Nova Scotia so job opportunities may not be that frequent. The number employed in this occupation is expected to grow moderately over the next few years, which will likely provide some additional opportunities for employment. With a large percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to be a key contributor to employment opportunities over the coming years. Chemical Technologists and Technicians most commonly work full-time hours. Furthermore, the jobs are typically permanent positions.

The median employment income for 51% of Chemical Technologists and Technicians who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $48,849. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

OccupationEstimated employment in 2018Estimated change in employment between 2017 and 2019Estimated openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019Estimated rate of unemployment in 2018 Estimated hourly earnings in 2015 (learn more)Estimated annual earnings in 2015
Chemical Technologists and Technicians350Moderate growth20High
Minimum: $18.00
Median: $25.00
Maximum: $43.59
Minimum: $8,304
Median: $39,384
Maximum: $73,351
Occupations in Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology25,875Strong growth3,095Low
Minimum: $17.69
Median: $31.35
Maximum: $47.18
Minimum: $13,568
Median: $60,422
Maximum: $107,009
Chemical Technologists and TechniciansCompared to: Occupations in Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology
Percent employed full-time90%94%
Percent self-employed0%7%
Where will I likely work?
Area of EmploymentChemical Technologists and TechniciansCompared to: All NS Occupations
% EmployedMedian Annual Income% EmployedMedian Annual Income
Southern9%x12%$30,581
Northern16%x16%$33,660
Cape Breton11%x13%$32,974
Halifax47%$37,18147%$41,209
Annapolis Valley16%x13%$32,958
What are the workers like?
AgeChemical Technologists and TechniciansCompared to: All Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology
% Employed% Employed
15-2423%x
25-3430%14%
35-4427%33%
45-5411%32%
55-649%18%
65+N/A4%
Median Age3843
GenderChemical Technologists and TechniciansCompared to: Occupations in Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology
% Employed% Employed
Female59%20%
Male41%80%
EducationChemical Technologists and TechniciansCompared to: All Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology
% EmployedMedian Annual Income% EmployedMedian Annual Income
Less than high schoolN/Ax0.7%$28,107
High school19.5%$29,09712.1%$35,125
Trades certificate6.9%$41,3136.8%$54,923
College certificate or diploma29.9%$51,78233.7%$52,476
University certificate or diploma6.9%$57,9373.7%$52,446
Bachelor's degree29.9%$47,70929.7%$58,011
University advanced certificate or diploma3.4%x2.0%$54,917
Master's degreeN/A$50,1569.7%$37,706
Doctorate5.7%x1.7%$65,565
Medicine, dentistry, veterinary, optometryN/Ax0.1%$57,566
Total100%100%
Wage Disclaimer

Hourly earnings data are from the Labour Force Survey by Statistics Canada. Data are not available for all occupations. Hourly earnings are calculated based on usual hours worked per week. This is how an annual salary, for instance, gets converted to an hourly rate. The data include full and part-time workers along with new and experienced workers. Self-employed workers are excluded.

Annual employment income data reported in the Work Prospects section, are from the 2011 National Household Survey by Statistics Canada. Much of the data (around 70%) came directly from tax records. The data relates to the year 2010 and includes total wages and salaries and net income from self-employment.

Sources

Employment Requirements & Contacts

Regulations:
No regulating bodies were found under this occupation profile
Useful contacts:
Chemical Institute of Canada
222 Queen Street, Suite 400
Ottawa, ON K1P 5V9
Tel: (613) 232-6252
Fax: (613) 232-5862
info@cheminst.ca

Training Paths & Education

Program Name:Biochemistry
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the college or university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that focuses on the scientific study of the chemistry of living systems, their fundamental chemical substances and reactions, and their chemical pathways and information transfer systems, with particular reference to carbohydrates, proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids. These programs include courses in bio-organic chemistry, protein chemistry, bioanalytical chemistry, bioseparations, regulatory biochemistry, enzymology, hormonal chemistry, calorimetry, and research methods and equipment operation.
See all institutions providing this program+
Dalhousie University
Office of the Registrar
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2
(902) 494-2450
admissions@dal.ca
University of King's College
6350 Coburg Road
Halifax, NS B3H 2A1
(902) 422-1271
admissions@ukings.ca
Program Name:Biophysics
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the college or university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that focuses on the application of physics principles to the scientific study of the mechanisms of biological processes and assemblies at all levels of complexity. These programs include courses in research methods and equipment operation and applications to subjects such as bioenergetics, biophysical theory and modelling, electrophysics, membrane biology, channels, receptors and transporters, contractility and muscle function, protein shaping and folding, molecular and supramolecular structures and assemblies, and computational science.
See all institutions providing this program+
Dalhousie University
Office of the Registrar
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2
(902) 494-2450
admissions@dal.ca
Program Name:Chemical technology/technician
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the trades/college level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that prepares individuals to apply scientific principles and technical skills in support of chemical and biochemical research and industrial operations. These programs include courses in principles of chemistry and biochemistry, technical mathematics, computer applications, radiochemistry, industrial biochemistry, chemical instrumentation, physical chemistry, laboratory research methods, industrial processing methods and equipment, and test equipment operation and maintenance.
There are no schools in Nova Scotia offering this program.
Program Name:Forensic science and technology
Education Level:This program may be offered at the college, trades, or university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that focuses on the application of the physical, biomedical, and social sciences to the analysis and evaluation of physical evidence, human testimony and criminal suspects. These programs include courses in forensic medicine, forensic dentistry, anthropology, psychology, pathology, forensic laboratory technology, crime scene analysis, fingerprint technology, document analysis, pattern analysis, examination procedures, applicable laws and regulations, and professional standards and ethics.
See all institutions providing this program+
Saint Mary's University
923 Robie Street
Halifax, NS B3H 3C3
(902) 420-5400
admission.status@smu.ca
Additional resources:

There are no additional resources for this occupation.