a dark blue TraitLab logo
Pricing Sign up

Have an account? Sign in

Career profile Agricultural Technician

Also known as Agricultural Research Technician, Agricultural Research Technologist, Agricultural Technician, Laboratory Technician (Lab Tech), Research Assistant, Research Associate, Research Specialist, Research Technician, Seed Analyst

Agricultural Technician

Also known as Agricultural Research Technician, Agricultural Research Technologist, Agricultural Technician

Interests Profile
  • Realistic
  • Investigative
  • Conventional
Pay Range
$28,650 - $66,620 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
  • Writing
Knowledge Areas
  • Mathematics
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
Core tasks
  • Record data pertaining to experimentation, research, or animal care.
  • Measure or weigh ingredients used in laboratory testing.
  • Prepare data summaries, reports, or analyses that include results, charts, or graphs to document research findings and results.
Is Agricultural Technician the right career path for you?

Would Agricultural Technician be a good fit for you?

Explore how your personality fits with Agricultural Technician and hundreds of other career paths.

Create your free account

What does an Agricultural Technician do?

Agricultural Technicians work with agricultural scientists in plant, fiber, and animal research, or assist with animal breeding and nutrition.

In addition, Agricultural Technicians

  • set up or maintain laboratory equipment and collect samples from crops or animals,
  • prepare specimens or record data to assist scientists in biology or related life science experiments,
  • conduct tests and experiments to improve yield and quality of crops or to increase the resistance of plants and animals to disease or insects.

What kind of tasks does an Agricultural Technician perform regularly?

Agricultural Technicians are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:

  • Record data pertaining to experimentation, research, or animal care.
  • Measure or weigh ingredients used in laboratory testing.
  • Prepare data summaries, reports, or analyses that include results, charts, or graphs to document research findings and results.
  • Set up laboratory or field equipment as required for site testing.
  • Prepare laboratory samples for analysis, following proper protocols to ensure that they will be stored, prepared, and disposed of efficiently and effectively.
  • Examine animals or crop specimens to determine the presence of diseases or other problems.
  • Collect animal or crop samples.
  • Supervise pest or weed control operations, including locating and identifying pests or weeds, selecting chemicals and application methods, or scheduling application.
  • Supervise or train agricultural technicians or farm laborers.
  • Respond to general inquiries or requests from the public.

The above responsibilities are specific to Agricultural Technicians. More generally, Agricultural Technicians are involved in several broader types of activities:

Getting Information
Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Documenting/Recording Information
Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Monitoring Processes, Materials, or Surroundings
Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
Processing Information
Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

What is an Agricultural Technician salary?

The median salary for an Agricultural Technician is $41,970, and the average salary is $45,920. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Agricultural Technician salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Agricultural Technicians earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Agricultural Technicians earn less than $28,650 per year, 25% earn less than $34,550, 75% earn less than $53,250, and 90% earn less than $66,620.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Agricultural Technicians is expected to change by 7.9%, and there should be roughly 3,700 open positions for Agricultural Technicians every year.

Median annual salary
$41,970
Typical salary range
$28,650 - $66,620
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)
7.9%

What personality traits are common among Agricultural Technicians?

Interests

Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.

Compared to most occupations, those who work as an Agricultural Technician are usually higher in their Realistic, Investigative, and Conventional interests.

Agricultural Technicians typically have very strong Realistic interests. Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Also, Agricultural Technicians typically have strong Investigative interests. Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

Lastly, Agricultural Technicians typically have moderate Conventional interests. Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

Values

People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Compared to most people, those working as an Agricultural Technician tend to value Relationships, Support, and Working Conditions.

Most importantly, Agricultural Technicians strongly value Relationships. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment.

Second, Agricultural Technicians moderately value Support. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees.

Lastly, Agricultural Technicians moderately value Working Conditions. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions.

Psychological Demands

Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.

In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as Agricultural Technicians must consistently demonstrate qualities such as attention to detail, integrity, and dependability.

Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of Agricultural Technicians, ranked by importance:

Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Analytical Thinking
Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Achievement/Effort
Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.

What education and training do Agricultural Technicians need?

Agricultural Technicians often have training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

Agricultural Technicians usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with this occupation.

Educational degrees among Agricultural Technicians

  • 9.7% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 24.9% completed high school or secondary school
  • 21.4% completed some college coursework
  • 15.0% earned a Associate's degree
  • 22.9% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 4.5% earned a Master's degree
  • 1.6% earned a doctorate or professional degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Agricultural Technicians

Agricultural Technicians may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as mathematics, biology, or chemistry knowledge.

The list below shows several areas in which most Agricultural Technicians might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.

Mathematics
Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Biology
Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
Chemistry
Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
Administration and Management
Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
Administrative
Knowledge of administrative and office procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and workplace terminology.

Important Abilities needed by Agricultural Technicians

Agricultural Technicians must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.

For example, Agricultural Technicians need abilities such as written comprehension, near vision, and oral comprehension in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Agricultural Technicians, ranked by their relative importance.

Written Comprehension
The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Near Vision
The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Oral Comprehension
The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Oral Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Problem Sensitivity
The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing that there is a problem.

Critical Skills needed by Agricultural Technicians

Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.

Agricultural Technicians frequently use skills like reading comprehension, active listening, and writing to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Agricultural Technicians, ranked by their relative importance.

Reading Comprehension
Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.
Active Listening
Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Writing
Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Critical Thinking
Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
Complex Problem Solving
Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

What is the source of this information?

The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.

If you have any questions or suggestions about this information, please send a message.