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Job Description

A Lab Technician will carry out work that assists in the advancement and development of modern medicine and science; they may be involved in sampling, testing, measuring, recording and analysing results as part of a scientific team. They will also be involved with technical support which allows the lab to function correctly and safely.

Entry Requirements

You can get into this job through:

College

You could take a college course, like a Level 2 Certificate or Level 3 Diploma in Applied Science to help improve your chances of finding work.

Chemistry, Physics and Biology A levels are also useful.

You'll usually need:

  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course

The following local colleges offer courses in Applied Science:

Or your local 6th form may offer a relevant course.

Apprenticeship

You could get into this job through an advanced apprenticeship as a laboratory technician.

You'll usually need 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English, maths and science.

Click here to search for an apprenticeship.

University

You could do a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree course in:

  • biology
  • chemistry
  • physics
  • forensic science

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English, maths and science
  • 3 A levels or equivalent

Click here to search for a suitable course.

Career tips

Experience in a lab can help when looking for work. You can get this by:

  • doing a year in industry as part of your degree
  • applying for part-time work in a laboratory whilst studying

You can find out more about becoming a laboratory technician from the Science Council and Health Careers.

Career Path and Progression

With experience, you could progress to team manager or lab supervisor, or specialise in complex analysis work.

With a degree and experience you could move into a research technician role.

Related careers you may be interested in:

  • Animal technician
  • Biochemist
  • Biologist

Required Skills

  • Excellent communication skills
  • The ability to analyse technical data and explain it to interested parties
  • Good team working skills
  • Attention to detail
  • The ability to provide technical reports
  • Flexibility

Salary Range

£15,000 to £30,000

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