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State of Washington Classified Job Specification


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Class Code: 538M
Category: Science & Engineering


Performs beginning‑level sub‑professional engineering work in field or office.

Distinguishing Characteristics

Employees in this class accomplish specifically detailed assignments under close supervision at first, but they may proceed in a fairly short time to broader assignments with less supervision. All positions are found in relatively small engineering units; therefore, the employees are usually assigned to a broad spectrum of work. For example, no incumbent in this class would spend the majority of his time in unskilled work such as cutting brush, preparing stakes, tracing drawings or operating blueprint machines. Although these are not primarily training positions with automatic promotion for successful completion of a term of employment, it is expected that the employing agency will provide training opportunities such as frequent assignments of higher‑order work. Promotion to regular higher‑order assignments is normally by competitive examination.

Typical Work

In field, serves as surveying party assistant; acts as rear chainman; holds stadia rod for instrument‑men; drives and marks stakes; cuts brush; records survey data, either on land surveying or on such projects as stream measurements or other engineering research; inspects parks, streams, structures, etc., in order to obtain specifically assigned information; 

In office, performs various drafting and computing tasks under direct supervision; prepares drawings, details, and plans from old drawings, tracings, and fairly complete sketches; computes yardages and other quantities, subject to check by engineers or skilled aides; drafts rudimentary maps; calculates and plots graphs, profiles, and other graphic mathematical or engineering‑type illustrations; revises construction plans with "as built" corrections operates, maintains and repairs blueprint machines; 

Performs other related work as required.

Knowledge and Abilities

Knowledge of:  simple drafting techniques; arithmetic, algebra, geometry, and trigonometry. 

Ability to: interpret maps and blueprints; accomplish various drafting and tracing assignments ranging from simple overlays or interpretation of sketch material into finished working drawings; withstand long hours at drafting board or exert sustained physical effort during inclement weather in field; learn to use a variety of engineering formulas; travel frequently and for extended periods if in field positions; or occasionally if in office position.

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

Graduation from high school or GED certificate.


One year of experience as an Engineering Aide Trainee.

Class Specification History

New class Effective May 1, 1963
Revised November 1, 1965 General revision
Revised March 1, 1968 Revises minimum qualifications
Revised January 1, 1969 Revises minimum qualifications
Revised August 9, 1971 Revises minimum qualifications
New class code: (formerly 60050) effective July 1, 2007