How to Become a Remote Sensing Technician

How to Become a Remote Sensing Technician: Career Path Guide

If you want to become a remote sensing technician, you first need to determine if this career path is a good fit for you. If the following description sounds like you, then you’re probably well suited for a career as a remote sensing technical:


• You are educated in an applicable field, such as geography or remote sensing technology

• You are interested in geography and mapping

• You pay close attention to detail when working

• You enjoy reviewing maps, aerial photos and surveys


Below we've outlined what you'll need to begin a career as a remote sensing technician. We've also included helpful information for this career, such as job description, job duties, salary expectations, a list of possible employers and much more!



Education Needed to Become a Remote Sensing Technologist

Typically, the minimum educational requirement for employment as a remote sensing technician is a college technical diploma, although some employers may require a university bachelor’s degree.


The following post-secondary programs are most applicable for a career as a remote sensing technician:


• Geographical information systems

• Remote sensing

• Geography

• Geology

• Natural resource management

• Earth sciences




Remote Sensing Technician Job Description

Remote sensing technicians apply remote sensing technologies to assist scientists in areas such as urban planning, flight planning or natural resource management. A large part of their job involves analyzing data acquired from aircraft, satellites, or ground-based platforms, using statistical analysis software, image analysis software, or Geographic Information Systems (GIS).



Remote Sensing Technician Job Duties

• Analyze data obtained from remote sensing systems

• Develop automated processes to correct the presence of image distorting objects such as ground vegetation

• Prepare and deliver reports and presentations of geospatial project information

• Recommend or introduce new remote sensing hardware or software acquisitions

• Collect supporting climatic or field survey data to corroborate remote sensing data analysis

• Conduct research for the purpose of discovering ways to advance remote sensory technology and systems

• Format complied images to increase their usefulness

• Direct installation or testing of new remote sensing hardware or software and other equipment



Who Creates Jobs for Remote Sensing Technicians?

Remote sensing technicians are employed on a part-time, full-time and contractual basis by the following types of organizations:


• Natural resources companies

• Forestry and natural resource consulting companies

• Engineering and environmental consulting firms

• Environmental organizations

• Government agencies



Working Conditions for Remote Sensing Technicians

Work Setting: Remote sensing technicians work primarily in office settings, where they analyze data, prepare charts and reports, create and update databases, and consult with other members of inter-disciplinary teams.


Working Hours: Remote sensing technicians typically work normal weekday business hours, although they may be required to occasionally work overtime during evenings and weekends, such as when facing upcoming project deadlines.



Skills and Traits Needed to Become a Remote Sensing Technician

In order to become effective in a career as a remote sensing technician you need to posses a certain set of skills and personality traits. These skills and traits will allow you to perform your job duties with competence, and will help you maintain a positive attitude towards your work.


Organizations that employ remote sensing technicians prefer to hire candidates with these skills and traits, and as a result, you will often see them listed on remote sensing technician job postings.


• A keen interest in geography and mapping

• An interest in reviewing aerial map and land survey data

• A patient and methodical approach to work activities

• Proficiency with statistical analysis software, image analysis software, and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

• A natural aptitude in mathematics

• Enjoy working with specialized equipment and instruments at tasks requiring precision

• Enjoy analyzing information and finding innovative solutions to problems

• The ability to correctly follow a given rule or set of rules in order to arrange things or actions

• The ability to work effectively in a team environment



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Remote Sensing Technician Salary

The salary level of remote sensing technicians can vary depending on their level of education, their level of experience, the size and type of their employer, and many other factors.


Remote Sensing Technician Salary Alberta: According to the 2011 Alberta Wage and Salary Survey, Albertans working in the Land Survey Technologists and Technicians occupational group earn an average of between $18.30 and $36.21 per hour.


Remote Sensing Technician Salary Canada: According to Service Canada, the average salary of Canadian workers in the Mapping and Related Technologists and Technicians occupational group is $46,430 per year.


Remote Sensing Technician Salary United States: According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary level of American workers in the Surveying and Mapping Technicians occupational group is $39,670 per year.



Careers Similar to Remote Sensing Technician

Listed below are careers in our database that are similar in nature to Remote Sensing Technician, as they may involve many of the same skills, competencies and responsibilities.



Civil Engineering Technologist

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Specialist


Land Surveyor



References: Remote Sensing Technician Career Information

Please consult the references below to find more information on the various aspects of a career as a remote sensing technician.


Occupations in Alberta:Mapping Technologist.” (March 16, 2016). ALIS website - Alberta Learning Information Service. Retrieved January 12, 2020.

Architecture & Engineering:Surveying and Mapping Technicians.” (December 4, 2019). Bureau of Labor Statistics - United States Government website. Retrieved January 12, 2020.

Career Profiles:Remote Sensing Technologist.” (n.d.). ECO Canada website. Retrieved January 12, 2020.


Please Note: Some of the information for this career guide was gathered from actual job postings, which due to the brief nature of their online presence, are not listed here as sources.




Scholarships for Becoming a Remote Sensing Technician

Scholarships listed for majors that apply to becoming a Remote Sensing Technician can be found on the following pages:


Environmental Science Scholarships

Geography Scholarships

Geology Scholarships


Success Tip: Be sure to apply for any scholarships that you even barely qualify for, as there are millions of dollars of scholarships that go unused every year due to a lack of applicants!



Becoming a Remote Sensing Technician: Applicable Majors

Studying one of the university majors listed below is an excellent starting point to becoming a remote sensing technician. Click on the links to find out what else you can do with these majors!


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