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Museum Technician

Museum technicians assist curators, conservators and other museum staff with functions such as researching, developing, managing and conserving museum collections, setting up exhibits and delivering public programs.

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used. Here is how this occupation has been classified over time:

  • 2006 NOC: Preparators and Museology Technicians (5212.6) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: Technical Occupations Related to Museums and Art Galleries (F112) 
  • 2011 NOC: Technical occupations related to museums and art galleries (5212) 
  • 2016 NOC: Technical occupations related to museums and art galleries (5212) 
Interests & Abilities

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2006 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups. If there are multiple related NOC groups, select a NOC heading to learn about each one.

Preparators and Museology Technicians
2006 NOC : 5212.6

Interest Codes

Interest Codes for This NOC Group

OBJECTIVE

Interest in precision working to construct exhibit furnishings, displays and dioramas, and to build models and install artifacts in displays

METHODICAL

Interest in compiling information to receive, ship, pack and unpack objects and exhibits; and in preparing artifacts for storage and shipping

innovative

Interest in designing exhibit furnishings, display cases and display areas

Your Interest Codes

To identify or change your interest codes, complete the Interests Exercise in CAREERinsite.

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 

It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective, and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes for this NOC group is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn About Interests

Abilities

Typical ability expectations for this NOC group
Your abilities

To fill in or change the values for your abilities, complete the Abilities Exercise in CAREERinsite.

Mental Abilities

General Learning Ability

Verbal Ability

Numerical Ability

Visual Abilities

Spatial Perception

Form Perception

Clerical Perception

Physical Abilities

Motor Coordination

Finger Dexterity

Manual Dexterity

Understanding Abilities

A Quick Guide

You are born with abilities that help you process certain types of information and turn it into action. These abilities influence which skills you can learn more easily.

The abilities or aptitudes shown for this NOC group come from the General Aptitude Test Battery (GATB). The GATB measures 9 aptitudes. It groups them into 3 categories: mental, visual, and physical.

The abilities scores range from 1 to 5, with 5 being stronger.

Learn About Abilities

Duties
Updated Mar 05, 2021

Museum technicians are part of a team of museum personnel concerned with the safe and suitable collection, display and storage of artifacts (products of human hands) or specimens (natural history items). Their duties and responsibilities vary depending on the type of museum collection. Under the supervision and direction of museum curators and conservators, they may:

  • Help manage collections by collecting and cataloguing, preparing condition reports, preparing and storing items, and keeping records
  • Assist with cleaning, repairing, preserving and restoring items in the collection
  • Help researchers prepare information about collections for programs and special events, and conduct tours for students and special interest groups
  • Help to develop and manage storage areas and monitor environmental conditions (for example, humidity levels)
  • Assist with exhibit design and ensure that necessary materials are available for assembling and maintaining exhibits
  • Build display and packing cases
  • Pack, unpack, move and install items for display
  • Ensure touring exhibits are properly and safely packed, transported and displayed, report on their status and condition, and identify and correct any problems with exhibit setup
  • Perform seasonal field work at archaeological, paleontological or historic sites, which may involve inspecting and identifying artifacts or specimens, doing an environmental assessment, taking inventory, collecting and recording observations
  • Supervise and work with interns, seasonal staff and volunteers
Working Conditions
Updated Mar 05, 2021
  • Strength Required Lift over 20 kg

Museum technicians work primarily indoors in offices, storage areas, laboratories and exhibition galleries. Sometimes, they may work on ladders or outdoors at archaeological, paleontological or historic sites.

Museum technicians may be required to lift items weighing over 20 kilograms.

Traits & Skills
Updated Mar 05, 2021

Museum technicians need:

  • An interest in art, natural history or human history
  • Mechanical aptitude
  • Creativity
  • Oral and written communication skills
  • Interpersonal and team building skills
  • Time-management and multi-tasking skills

They should enjoy doing precise, detailed work, taking a methodical approach to their work and solving problems.

Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 05, 2021
  • Minimum Education Varies

In Alberta, there are no standard education requirements for museum technicians but employers generally prefer to hire applicants who have a related bachelor’s degree, or a diploma or certificate in museum studies.

Computer skills and related volunteer or paid experience are definite assets. This experience could include the care and handling of collections, records management, research and exhibit development Depending on the type of museum, skills in related fields also may be assets. Related fields might include carpentry, electronics, mechanical engineering, lighting, picture framing, painting, welding or sewing.

The Alberta Museums Association offers a Certificate in Museums Studies program. The program is open to any individual and has no pre-requisites for admission.


Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

To expand or narrow your search for programs related to this occupation, visit Post-Secondary Programs.

Completing a program does not guarantee entrance into an occupation. Before enrolling in an education program, prospective students should look into various sources for education options and employment possibilities. For example, contact associations and employers in this field.

Certification Requirements
Updated Mar 05, 2021
  • Certification Not Regulated

There is currently no provincial legislation regulating this occupation in Alberta.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 05, 2021

Museum technicians work for:

  • Federal government departments and agencies
  • Provincial government departments
  • Municipal and local history museums
  • Galleries
  • Science centres
  • Exhibit design companies
  • Natural and historic parks, museums, zoos, botanical gardens and interpretive centres
  • Historical societies
  • Privately funded historic and cultural agencies
  • Universities

Without further education, advancement opportunities for museum technicians are limited.

Museum technicians are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 5212: Technical occupations related to museums and art galleries. In Alberta, 84% of people employed in this classification work in the following industries:

The employment outlook [pdf] in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • Trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the industries listed above)
  • Location in Alberta
  • Employment turnover (when people leave existing positions)
  • Occupational growth (when new positions are created)
  • Size of the occupation

In Alberta, the 5212: Technical occupations related to museums and art galleries occupational group is expected to have an above-average annual growth of 2.2% from 2019 to 2023. In addition to job openings created by employment turnover, 39 new positions are forecasted to be created within this occupational group each year.

Note
NOC groups often include several related occupations. Although there is labour market data for the larger NOC group, this occupation makes up only a part of that group. It means data for this occupation may be different than the data shown. For example, only some of the new positions to be created will be for this occupation. It also applies to other data for the NOC group such as number of people employed.

Source: Alberta Regional Occupational Demand Outlook

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 05, 2021

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2016 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups. If there are multiple related NOC groups, select a NOC heading to learn about each one.

Technical occupations related to museums and art galleries

2016 NOC : 5212
Average Wage
$20.96
Per Hour
Average Salary
$29,108.00
Per Year
Average Hours
33.5
Per Week
Average Months on Payroll
8.9
Survey Methodology Survey Analysis

Source
2019 Alberta Wage and Salary Survey

NOC 5212 Wage Profile

Unless otherwise noted, the data shown here is for all industries and all regions in Alberta.

All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production), and other forms of compensation.

To see the full survey data for this NOC group, visit the wage profile.

Other wage sources
To make an informed wage and salary decision, research other wage sources [pdf] to supplement this data.

B: Good Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

Good Reliability, represents a CV of between 6.01% and 15.00% and/or fewer than 30 survey observations and/or if survey observations represent less than 50% of all estimated employment for the occupation.


Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Starting
Overall
Top
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $15.00 $33.53 $18.75 $17.00
Overall $15.00 $40.23 $20.96 $18.00
Top $15.00 $41.04 $22.68 $20.00

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

Pay brackets for hourly wages

  • Starting pay: average pay offered for entry-level positions
  • Overall pay: average pay across all employees in this occupation
  • Top pay: average pay offered to top-paid employees

Industry Information
Public Administration
ALL INDUSTRIES
Information, Culture, Recreation

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

64%
64%)

Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties

31%
31%

Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months

0%
0%

Vacancy Rate

N/A
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Clerical and Administrative Support
  • Education and Library Studies
  • Fine Arts and Performing Arts
  • Sciences
  • Social Sciences, Law and Religious Studies
Other Sources of Information
Updated Mar 05, 2021

Alberta Museums Association website: museums.ab.ca

Get information and referrals about career, education, and employment options from Alberta Supports.

Updated Mar 05, 2021. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook, and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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