Apprenticeships in Scotland
Apply for apprenticeships in Scotland
Hydrographic surveyors use state-of-the-art technology to produce detailed plans of seabeds, harbours and waterways. They measure and map underwater surfaces and study the construction of the seabed, showing the depth, shape and contours. They specialise in precise positioning, data acquisition and processing in onshore or offshore marine environments.
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There are several routes to becoming a hydrographic surveyor. You can gain the qualifications you need by
completing a university course, on-the-job training through the Royal Navy or an apprenticeship. You should explore the options to find out which is the right one for you.
You may need a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card to work on a construction site.
You could study for a surveying degree approved by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) or the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB). Relevant subjects include:
If you have an existing degree in another subject, you may be able to take an accredited postgraduate qualification in hydrographic surveying or geomatics.
For this you’ll need:
An apprenticeship with a surveying company is a good way into the industry.
You could complete a civil engineering or surveying apprenticeship and then specialise in hydrographic surveying.
Apprenticeships are open to anyone over the age of 16. As an apprentice, you will be fully employed by your company and expected to work a minimum of 30 hours a week. Your time will be split between on-the-job experience and a college or training provider.
You may be able to start your hydrographic career by joining the Royal Navy as a hydrographic, meteorological and oceanographic specialist. Hydrographic training is provided by the Flag Officer Sea Training Hydrography and Meteorology (FOST HM) school.
If you want to become chartered, you need to complete the RICS Assessment of Professional Competence, which requires two years of on-the-job training. There is also an NVQ Level 4 in Spatial Data Management available.
To work offshore you must pass a medical examination every two years. You must also pass an offshore survival course with the Basic Offshore Safety Induction and Emergency Training (BOSIET).
Work experience is essential to gaining employment within the construction industry. You could gain this at school, or by working weekends and holidays with a company or relative who works as a hydrographic surveyor. Potential employers will always be pleased to see work experience listed on your CV.
Additional skills which may benefit anyone considering a job as a hydrographic surveyor include:
As a hydrographic surveyor you could be:
The expected salary for a hydrographic surveyor varies as you become more experienced.
Hours and salary depend on location, employer and any overtime you may do. Salaries and career options can improve with chartered status.
* Salaries have been collected from multiple industry sources and have been updated as of 2019
Check out the latest hydrographic surveyor vacancies:
As these are external websites, the number of vacancies related to your preferred role may vary. New opportunities will be posted as they come up.
You could become a senior hydrologist, managing and coordinating a team of researchers, hydrologists and engineers.
You might also work as a consultant, advising government departments and businesses on sustainable water use, civil hydro-engineering projects or flood risk management.
If you have gained four or five years’ experience working in a company you could set up as a self-employed contractor/sub-contractor.
Explore the progression opportunities below