Do you want to work as an animal research technician?
READ: This page helps you to read about the career and the info you need to decide on whether this is indeed the career you want to follow.
RESEARCH: Learn about the skills required and minimum subjects to enter this career, as well as the places where you can study further after school.
PREPARE: If you want to plan and prepare for the career, then join the OZT Community! Members have access to tools, while chatting with other students and experts from around the world. Prepare to be amazed!
UPDATED: 31 August 2020
1. What is an animal research technician?
Animal research technicians take care of the daily needs of animals kept at different kinds of research institutions.
The career can also be known as:
- Animal Care Technician
- Biological Science Technician
- Laboratory Animal Technician
2. What does an Animal Research Technician do?
The Animal Research Technician career can be found in the following career categories:
- Animal Care
What does an Animal Research Technician focus on?
The primary focus of animal technicians is to monitor and maintain the health of animals under their care and perform duties such as receive new animals, clean and maintain cages and provide food and water.
What are the daily tasks of an Animal Research Technician?
- ensure a high level of animal welfare
- clean cages, pens, trays, equipment and fittings, to keep animals clean and comfortable
- feed and water animals
- handle and move animals safely
- administer medicines
- monitor the condition of animals
- collect and record data
- administration and filing
3. The working environment of an Animal Research Technician
Where does an Animal Research Technician work?
Animal research technicians work mostly indoors, within laboratories.
Places of Employment –
They can be employed by animal hospitals, research laboratory facilities or government.
What is the average annual salary of an Animal Research Technician?
On average the income per year is around $35,000. This will differ from country to country.
What difficulties can an Animal Research Technician face?
The most difficult part is working with animals that might be scared or aggressive, which can be dangerous and at times emotionally stressful. They need to wear protective clothing, which can be a bit restrictive. They may also work long hours and over weekends and holidays to finish work within tight deadlines.
Future growth and Possibilities
The projected growth of new job opportunities within this career looks promising, growing at around 10% annually.
4. Which Skills are required by an Animal Research Technician?
The skills required for a career as an animal research technician can be divided into two very important groups. The first is the group containing life skills, which are the core skills that are necessary or desirable for full participation in everyday life. The second group is career skills, or the specific skills required to allow a person to enter and operate effectively within a specific career. Some or maybe even all of the life skills can assist in strengthening the career skills, and they might even be the same for specific careers.
- Critical thinking
- Creative thinking
- Decision making
- Problem Solving
- Effective communication
- Interpersonal relationship
- Good animal care skills
- Basic customer service skills
- Good health and physical fitness
- Excellent computer literacy
5. Which Subjects must I have at School to prepare for this career?
The subjects you choose at school are important as they lay the foundation for further studies at college or university. While still at school, it’s also important to learn more about the animals you will work with, as well as gain some experience.
OZT has a list of various tertiary institutions where you can study further, after school. Each of these institutions also have their own Group page on OZT where you will find the exact subjects they require of you to have passed in school. Keep these requirements in mind, and discuss it with your school, guidance counselor and parents to ensure that you are prepared!
6. What will I need to Study to become an Animal Research Technician?
The minimum requirements differ from country to country, with entry with just a High School certificate possible. Most countries and organizations do require at least a College Diploma or even a Bachelor’s Degree.
If you do decide to study further, majors can be chosen in animal behaviour, biology, zoology or even physiology.
Short Courses –
Courses in subjects such as animal first aid, behaviours and movement can assist to get the best job.
The duration of College and Bachelor’s Degrees can be up to 3 or 4 years. Short Courses are usually between a few weeks and a year.
Possible Career Preparation Paths
If this is your dream career that you want to pursue, then it’s important to plan the way forward.
Why is planning important?
To ensure that you understand the requirements for your career, and that you are always prepared for the next step on the road towards your dream. A Preparation Path is like your road map to where you want to be.
Possible Combined Career Paths
It is possible to sometimes combine two or more related careers. This normally happens when you study and practice a specific main career, but the knowledge and experience gained also help you to have a paying hobby or secondary income career.
Possible Alternatives (there are a lot more):
Stepping Stone Career
Being an animal research technician can also be used as a stepping stone career. A stepping stone career is one which is used to help you get to another career, normally because the other career is too difficult to reach (sometimes due to things like high fees etc).
You can begin as an intern technician after basic short courses and expert guidance (maybe working under a mentor). The money made can then be used to pay for studies towards a promotion or another career, and the experience helps in gaining knowledge. One paying to help get to the other.
Some of the possible paths:
Training and apprenticeship
Even though it is important to study to get into some of the animal careers, most of the skills you will need as a technician will be acquired through practice. This means that you will learn how to perform some of the daily tasks by actually doing it a few times and learning the steps.
In some cases entry level positions require training sessions even before you are allowed to actually perform your job duties. These sessions are offered by the place of employment, after you have successfully applied.
Apprenticeship is also possible where you need to learn skills from a more senior cartoonist or expert.
Join the Animal Research Technicians Group in STEP 8 to learn more and even interact with the educational institutions that will help you secure your dream career!
Average level of education of all the people who enter the career
7. Licenses, Certificate, Registration and Professional Associations
Certain animal careers require some form of legal certification to prove that you can indeed do the work, and work with the necessary equipment.
Although not required by law, certifications may help workers establish their credentials and enhance their skills.
Learn more about requirements by joining OZT Community.
8. Where can I study further?
All of the above information will help you understand more about the Career, including the fact that there are different paths to take to reach it. But if you are almost done with High School (Grades 11 or 12), you also need to start thinking about further studies, and WHERE you will study.
See the List of Universities, Colleges and Online Training Academies who offer courses towards animal care, zoology and physiology.
Join the OZT community
Join us as a special member and learn more about becoming an animal research technician.
Members of the Platform have special access to:
- Info on the best places where you can study (colleges, universities and online)
- Expertly designed advice to prepare you for the career, and links to places where you can gain valuable experience. For some career experience is necessary, otherwise you wont get the job!
- Top notch info on each of the different species you will work with
- Make friends around the world and share knowledge
- Compete and win points, badges, games, prizes and certificates. Be the best of the best, while you learn and prepare!
If you have decided on being an Animal Research Technician, please click on the JOIN GROUP button. Members will be directed to the Group, while non-members will be assisted to register first.
If this career is NOT the career for you, then you may return to the MAIN CAREER menu, and search for something different.
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