So, you want to be surveyor? This is what you’ll need:
- good at mathematics
- good organisational skills
- able to work neatly and accurately
- good health and good eyesight (may be corrected)
- able to work independently or as part of a team.
What is surveying?
Surveyors assemble and assess land and geographic information which is used for planning and regulation of the land, the sea and related structures.
Surveyors may perform the following tasks:
- work out the size and shape of an area of land
- work out the position of boundaries of public or private land
- compile and evaluate data and interpret codes of practice
- study the natural and social environment, measure land and marine resources and use the data in planning development in urban, rural and regional areas
- plan, develop and redevelop urban or rural property, land and buildings
- plan, measure and manage construction works
- produce plans, maps, files, charts and reports.
Surveyors may work in related fields such as photogrammetry, geographic information systems or remote sensing and as project managers or financial advisers. After spending some years in the field, they often become managers.
How do I become a surveyor?
To become a surveyor you usually have to study surveying or spatial science at university. To get into these courses you usually need to pass your QCE. Prerequisite subjects, or assumed knowledge, in one or more of English and mathematics B are normally required. The various universities have different prerequisites and some have flexible entry requirements or offer external study. Contact the universities you are interested in for more information as requirements may change.
Graduates may be eligible for membership of the Institution of Surveyors, Australia and the Institution of Engineering and Mining Surveyors, Australia. Full membership requires completion of a recognised degree and experience in the field.
Graduates must be registered by the Surveyors Board of Queensland to practise as a surveyor. Completion of a relevant degree, practical experience and demonstration of competence through technical projects or further study is required for registration. To practise as a cadastral surveyor you need to be specially licensed.
All states and territories of Australia and New Zealand have mutual recognition arrangements whereby registration as a surveyor in any one area automatically allows for registration anywhere else in these zones, on payment of the appropriate fees and provided minimum statutory requirements are met.
You may also want to specialise in one of the many areas of surveying, including:
A cadastral/land surveyor marks property boundaries and records the information on plans and maps. They must be licensed to do this work, since the plans they make provide the basis for legal transactions of land parcels.
An engineering surveyor surveys routes for railways, roads, pipelines, canals, sewers and tunnels and makes detailed surveys of construction sites, dam sites, multistorey buildings and other engineering projects.
A geodetic surveyor uses signals from satellites such as the global positioning system (GPS), star observations, precise levelling and electronic distance measurements to locate positions accurately on the earth's surface for global mapping, and to monitor movements of the earth's crust.
A mine surveyor measures underground and open-cut mines in detail. Their surveys help mining organisations locate new mines safely, avoiding older mines, and allow connections to be made between different underground passages. Mine surveyors also establish the boundaries of mining claims in some states and territories.
Remote Sensing Surveyor
A remote sensing surveyor uses digital data from high-resolution satellites and airborne imagery systems to monitor changes in the surface features of the Earth.
A topographic surveyor provides information for the compilation of maps of physical features of the earth's surface, such as hills, valleys, rivers and lakes, by making field measurements and taking aerial photographs.
They work on, above or below the surface of the land or sea, and often work with other professionals.
Surveyors may spend a lot of time working outdoors. They also work in offices, analysing data and preparing plans and reports