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State of Washington Classified Job Specification


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Class Code: 541G
Category: Science & Engineering

Class Series Concept

See Cartographer 1


Performs professional cartography projects and/or activities providing geographic products, services and/or information using conventional and/or computerized methods.

Distinguishing Characteristics

Performs journey-level work. Independently produces custom maps or map/data products or develop procedures when accuracy requirements are subjective or data involves a large number of variables. Seeks assistance or guidance from higher-level professionals for unusually complex or unique map/data products.

Typical Work

May lead or supervise a unit or shift of cartographers and/or technicians;

Conducts research, designs, compiles and produces maps from various source material such as road inventory logs, aerial photography and revised maps;

Designs, compiles and produces by hand or through computerized equipment new county, city, administrative and township maps utilizing field reports, engineer's plans and plats, aerial photographs, U.S.G.S. quadrangles, Coast and Geodetic charts and other reliable sources;

Does fine drafting by hand or through computerized equipment and color separation work on special maps and charts, including most of the preliminary design;

Develops computer instructions to meet requirements of specific mapping project;

Edits mapping data for input;

Plans map layouts and techniques for mapping projects; develops standards for special maps;

Selects and orders source maps and documents, map type, color plate printing, and other material;

Provides guidance and assistance to lower level cartographers and assigns mapping projects to staff;

Trains users on the use and capabilities of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) software;

Assists instructors in a higher education institution and supervises students in research or academic projects;

Maintains map collections and libraries;

Writes technical specifications for vendor contracts;

Conducts research into new cartographic technology;

Performs other work as required.

Knowledge and Abilities

Knowledge of: principles of cartography; map projections; national map standards and/or special map standards established by the Federal Highway Administration; reproduction methods; reference and source materials; techniques of supervision.

Ability to: supervise; train and/or evaluate staff; estimate costs; use tools and instruments required in map drafting, lettering and scribing; choose and use reference and source material; select supplies.

Legal Requirement(s)

There may be instances where individual positions must have additional licenses or certification. It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure the appropriate licenses/certifications are obtained for each position.

Desirable Qualifications

A Bachelor's degree in cartography, geography, photogrammetry, geographic information systems, computer sciences, remote sensing, land survey, civil engineering, natural resources or closely related field that includes at least one course in cartography and one course in computer sciences or geographic information systems


One year of professional cartographic or geographic information systems production experience.
A Master's degree with major study in cartography will substitute for the required experience.
One college level course in cartography and one college level course in either computer sciences or geographic information systems AND any combination of four years of: 1) related undergraduate college education and 2) full-time experience in technical cartographic or geographic information systems production will substitute for the Bachelor's degree.

Class Specification History

New class, effective December 1, 1965.
Revised definition and minimum qualifications, effective April 23, 1973.
Revised definition, minimum qualifications, added distinguishing characteristics, effective January 12, 1977.
Revised minimum qualifications, effective February 9, 1979.
Revised definition and distinguishing characteristics, effective July 15, 1982.
Revised definition, minimum qualifications, deleted distinguishing characteristics and title change (formerly Cartographer 3), effective February 9, 1990.
Revised minimum qualifications, effective June 15, 1990.
Revised minimum qualifications, effective July 15, 1994.
Revised minimum qualifications, effective January 13, 1995.
Revise class. Revises title (formerly Cartographer 2), class code (formerly 65570), definition, and distinguishing characteristics; adopted May 10, 2007, effective July 1, 2007.
Revised typical work and desired qualifications, adopted June 13, 2019; effective July 1, 2019.
Added class series concept; adopted June 22, 2023, effective July 1, 2023.