Civil Engineering Technicians: Salary, career path, job outlook, education and more

Education Required
To prepare for programs in engineering technology after high school, prospective civil engineering technicians should take science and math courses, such as chemistry, physics, geometry, and trigonometry. They should also have basic knowledge of the use of computers.
Job Outlook
The projected percent change in employment from 2016 to 2026: 9% (As fast as average)
(The average growth rate for all occupations is 7 percent.)
Advancement
Civil engineering technicians can advance in their careers by learning to design systems for a variety of projects, such as storm sewers and sanitary systems, or traffic signal systems. It is also useful for civil engineering technicians to become skilled at reading plans and profiles—the graphical depiction of proposed projects.
Licenses/Certifications
Certification is not needed to enter this occupation, but it can help technicians advance their careers. The National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET) is one of the primary organizations overseeing certification for civil engineering technicians.
Median pay: How much do Civil Engineering Technicians make?
$49,980 Annual Salary
$24.03 per hour

Civil engineering technicians help civil engineers to plan, design, and build highways, bridges, utilities, and other infrastructure projects. They also help to plan, design, and build commercial, industrial, residential, and land development projects.

What do Civil Engineering Technicians do?

Civil engineering technicians typically do the following:

  • Read and review project drawings and plans to determine the sizes of structures
  • Confer with engineers about preparing plans
  • Use computer aided design software under the charge of engineers
  • Evaluate preconstruction field conditions
  • Observe project sites and evaluate contractors’ work to detect problems with a design
  • Test construction materials and soil samples in laboratories
  • Help to ensure that project construction conforms to design specifications and applicable codes
  • Develop plans and estimate costs for constructing systems and operating facilities
  • Prepare reports and document project activities and data
  • Set up and help maintain project files and records

Civil engineering technicians typically work under the charge of licensed civil engineers. These technicians generally help civil engineers by observing progress on a jobsite, collecting data, and completing routine reports to document project activities. Because they are not licensed, civil engineering technicians cannot approve designs or supervise the overall project.

Civil engineering technicians assume varied duties on the job. They sometimes estimate construction costs and develop specifications. Other times, they prepare drawings or survey land. They also may set up and monitor various instruments for traffic studies. These technicians’ duties often require familiarity with and use of various computer programs to design projects, collect and analyze data, prepare correspondence and reports, and manage file systems.

Careers for Civil Engineering Technicians

  • Concrete engineering technicians
  • Geotechnical engineering technicians
  • Highway engineering technicians
  • Structural engineering technicians
  • Transportation engineering technicians

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