At the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station this entry-level class is responsible for performing a full range of basic technical field and laboratory tasks with an emphasis on the preparation of simple to moderately complex solutions, stains, culture media and/or reagents; the preparation of specimens/samples for analysis using simple to more advanced, moderately complex techniques; performing routine technical examinations according to prescribed procedures.
GUIDELINES FOR JOB CLASS USE
Initially works under the close supervision of an employee of higher grade; works more independently with acquired experience.
May lead lower-level employees as assigned.
EXAMPLES OF DUTIES
IN THE FIELD
Collects samples of plants, insects and soils;
Counts insects or plants;
May tend plots;
At times, works on the basis of written and oral instructions;
Prepares specimens/samples using simple to more advanced, moderately complex techniques;
Assists in or performs routine to more complex technical tests and examinations according to prescribed procedures;
Prepares reports and maintains records of laboratory findings;
Tabulates and summarizes data;
May assist in training lower rank staff members in preparatory techniques;
May check work for conformity with required procedures;
May sterilize/clean equipment;
Performs related duties as required.
KNOWLEDGE, SKILL AND ABILITY
Knowledge of laboratory equipment, procedures, techniques, and terminology;
in manual dexterity;
oral and written communication skills;
carry out written and oral instructions;
perform calculations according to prescribed procedures;
prepare/maintain technical records;
utilize computer software;
perform mathematical calculations.
MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS - GENERAL EXPERIENCE
High school graduation or possession of General Educational Development (GED) certification; AND
Two (2) years of experience in related laboratory work.
MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS - SUBSTITUTIONS ALLOWED
College training in the biological or physical sciences may be substituted for the General Experience on the basis of fifteen (15) semester hours equaling one-half (1/2) year of experience to a maximum of two (2) years for an Associate’s degree.
Incumbents in this class will be required to possess and retain a valid Motor Vehicle Operator’s license.
Incumbents in this class may be required to travel.
Incumbents in this class must have adequate physical strength, stamina, physical agility and visual and auditory acuity, and must maintain such physical fitness as to be able to perform the duties.
A physical examination may be required.
Incumbents in this class may be required lift heavy objects, such as standard laboratory equipment and/or supplies; may be exposed to some risk of injury from such hazards as broken glass, chemicals, and toxic or disease-carrying substances.
JOB CLASS DESIGNATION
As defined by Sec. 5-196 of the Connecticut General Statutes, a job class is a position or group of positions that share general characteristics and are categorized under a single title for administrative purposes. As such, a job class is not meant to be all-inclusive of every task and/or responsibility.
This replaces the existing specification for the class of Agricultural Research Assistant 2 (37.5 Hour) in Salary Group VR 99 approved effective November 29, 2013. (Revised to modernize format and add Acknowledgement section. Reviewed for content.) Final No. 23-292
Agricultural Research Assistant 2
Guidelines for Class Use
Incumbents perform routine laboratory and field duties with supervision.
Incumbents exhibit skill in identifying the major classes or groups of materials collected or counted.
With the aid of a map, incumbents locate established field plots and record location of newly established field plots.
Incumbents record observations and measurements in written records, by photography and electronic data entry.
At this entry-level, incumbents perform routine technical laboratory work, with an emphasis on making simple as well as moderately complex solutions, stains, culture media and/or reagents, preparing specimens/samples for more complex analyses, and performing routine technical examinations according to prescribed procedures. Indications of the level of work performed follow.
Preparation of "moderately complex" solutions generally involves the mixing of several ingredients with water and the use of calculations. The use of a precision top-loading balance (more accurate than a trip balance) may be required, as well as graduated glassware and a pH meter for purposes of making adjustments. (NOTE: The use of analytical balances may be required at this level on a limited basis).
In preparing specimens/samples for analysis, incumbents may be required to use simple techniques such as those noted above, as well as more advanced techniques such as streaking plates and selecting bacterial colonies, pipetting samples and inoculating media (microbiology), and clarifying samples through separation and filtration using more complex types of solutions (chemistry).
Routine tests and examinations may also be performed at this level, according to standard, prescribed procedures. Incumbents should be able to take basic readings and record results but should not be expected to interpret the results. The use of equipment such as gas chromatographs and spectrophotometers may be required. Examples of tests performed at this level include analysis for the presence of parasites and plant pathogens (pathology); and enzymes.
In general, a degree of technical skill is required at this level, but incumbents still work under prescribed guidelines and exercise little independent judgment (e.g., interpretation of results).