In Summary - Hydrographic Surveyor
Hydrographic Surveyor s typically work in the following Career Sectors:
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The Work - Hydrographic Surveyor
Hydrographic surveyors carry out surveys of oceans, ports, harbours and inland waterways and rivers. They find out water depths and measure tides and currents. They also locate, identify and measure physical features such as rocks, sandbanks and sunken wrecks. They use a range of instruments such as GPS, echo sounders and Total Stations. When they've collected the information, they analyse it using computers.
Hydrographic surveyors make offshore surveys to find out where ships and boats can travel, to find suitable locations for oil or gas rigs, to develop sea mining projects or to aid the recovery of a sunken wreck. They make inshore surveys on rivers and canals to predict the environmental effects of building marinas or flood defences, assess the progress of dredging and maintain river channels for boats to use. Hydrographic cartographers use the survey data to produce and improve marine charts, navigation aids and oceanographic publications.
Hydrographic surveyors often have to work outdoors in cold, wet conditions. Many safety regulations apply to working in or near the marine environment. Hydrographic surveyors need to wear a hard hat on construction sites.
Most commonly reported Work Tasks
- Verify the accuracy of survey data including measurements and calculations conducted at survey sites.
- Search legal records, survey records, and land titles to obtain information about property boundaries in areas to be surveyed.
- Calculate heights, depths, relative positions, property lines, and other characteristics of terrain.
- Prepare and maintain sketches, maps, reports, and legal descriptions of surveys to describe, certify, and assume liability for work performed.
- Direct or conduct surveys to establish legal boundaries for properties, based on legal deeds and titles.
- Prepare or supervise preparation of all data, charts, plots, maps, records, and documents related to surveys.
- Write descriptions of property boundary surveys for use in deeds, leases, or other legal documents.
- Compute geodetic measurements and interpret survey data to determine positions, shapes, and elevations of geomorphic and topographic features.
- Determine longitudes and latitudes of important features and boundaries in survey areas using theodolites, transits, levels, and satellite-based global positioning systems (GPS).
- Record the results of surveys including the shape, contour, location, elevation, and dimensions of land or land features.
Most commonly reported Work Activities
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Getting Information Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Interacting With Computers Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
- Documenting/Recording Information Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
- Processing Information Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
- Analyzing Data or Information Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Interests - Hydrographic Surveyor
This occupation is typically suited for people with the following Career Interests:
Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.
Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.
Administrative people are interested in work that offers security and a sense of being part of a larger process. They may be at their most productive under supervisors who give clear guidelines and while performing routine tasks in a methodical and reliable way.
They tend to enjoy clerical and most forms of office work, where they perform essential administrative duties. They often form the backbone of large and small organisations alike. They may enjoy being in charge of office filing systems, and using computers and other office equipment to keep things running smoothly. They usually like routine work hours and prefer comfortable indoor workplaces.
The Investigative person will usually find a particular area of science to be of interest. They are inclined toward intellectual and analytical activities and enjoy observation and theory. They may prefer thought to action, and enjoy the challenge of solving problems with sophiscticated technology. These types prefer mentally stimulating environments and often pay close attention to developments in their chosen field.
As a hydrographic surveyor you will need a good understanding of science, maths, technology and computers. Knowledge of computer-aided design (CAD) is essential. You should be analytical, accurate and able to pay attention to detail.
You will need a wide knowledge of marine construction and law and should enjoy working in or near a marine environment. Navigation skills and experience of handling small marine craft are also useful.
In dealing with planning matters with local and national authorities you will need to have good communication skills, both written and oral communication skills are very important. You need good teamwork skills to support and work alongside colleagues, for example, geologists or other engineers.
Entry Requirements - Hydrographic Surveyor
The most direct route is to complete a relevant degree. These include geomatics, environmental science, geography or marine science.
DIT offer a degree programme in Geomatics (Surveying and Mapping) DT 112.
There are postgraduate courses in hydrographic surveying available in the UK.
Most entrants will have an honours degree. In order to qualify as a chartered surveyor you must either pass or obtain an exemption from the examinations of the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI). You must also undertake a minimum period of training and work experience.
Throughout your career you will be expected to keep up to date by undertaking continual professional development (CPD), usually by attending short courses. It is also possible to qualify as a land surveyor and then learn the necessary skills for hydrographic work.
Last Updated: May, 2015
Pay & Salary - Hydrographic Surveyor
Salary Range (thousands per year)* 18k - 50k
Last Updated: April, 2017
* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.