A two-year associate's degree program for aspiring chemical laboratory technicians prepares graduates to work in various laboratory environments. Students enrolled in these programs develop a solid understanding of chemical theory and learn how to apply that theory by completing laboratory projects. Classes emphasize chemistry, physics, calculus, and engineering. Students will need to be high school graduates with computer proficiency in order to enroll in this degree program.
Associate's Degree in Applied Science in Chemical Laboratory Technology
The courses in an associate's degree program in chemical laboratory technology are typically divided up among four semesters. The first two cover general theories of chemistry and science, while the second two semesters include more laboratory and applied analysis classes. In addition to general and organic chemistry and chemistry instrumentation, course topics may include:
- General physics
- Engineering physics
- Business communication
- Technical writing
- Safety and health
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, chemical technicians held about 64,770 jobs across the country in 2015 (www.bls.gov). These technicians were employed by architectural firms, engineering firms, pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing companies, scientific development services and other manufacturing companies. They earned a median annual salary of $44,660 in 2015 (www.bls.gov).
Chemical laboratory technicians can often advance to positions as laboratory supervisors by gaining experience on-the-job. A bachelor's degree in chemical science, laboratory management, or a similar field might help speed up this process.
An associate's degree in chemical laboratory technology prepares students to work with various chemicals and equipment to safely perform scientific experiments. These programs can lay the foundation for higher levels of education after graduation.