What is Petroleum Engineering Technology| Job Description, Salary, Schools, Cost

Petroleum engineering technicians or technologists are involved in all the technical activities in the oil and gas industry. Their roles are so broad and necessary. This post has all the information you require to become a Pet Eng Technologist ranging from what petroleum engineering technology is what technologists do, their job description, and salary.

The main difference between a petroleum engineer and a petroleum engineering technician is the more practical approach to learning that the technician has.

As a prospective technologist, you should strive to gain hands-on experience through an internship.

In addition, this article will give a breakdown of your job description as a petroleum engineering technologist, possible salary, and job outlook.

Also, the petroleum engineering programs and the schools you can get one from has been highlighted.

Here is a table of what to expect:

What is Petroleum Engineering Technology?

Petroleum Engineering Technology is the application of geology and petroleum engineering principles in the upstream (drilling and production) and midstream (pipeline) energy sectors.

Who is a Petroleum Engineering Technologists?

Also referred to as petroleum engineering technicians, petroleum engineering technologists are responsible for many technical activities that accompany producing oil and gas.

These can range from conventional reserves to heavy oil and oil sands. Technologists’ knowledge and training are applied to petroleum drilling, geology, production procedures, formation evaluation, and reservoir engineering.

Petroleum engineering technologists learn and study all areas of the industry — from exploration and drilling to field operations and economic analysis, geology, production procedures, formation evaluation, and reservoir engineering in the oil and gas industry.

In addition, Petroleum technicians are responsible for the technical aspects of working with petroleum during the extraction and refinement processes and are part of development and exploration teams.

It is important to note that professionals in the petroleum engineering technology field have several titles in the USA and the world.

Some of these titles include but are not limited to:

  • Engineering Technologist
  • Physical Sciences Technician / Technologist
  • Process Engineering Technologist
  • Petroleum Technician

Furthermore, petroleum engineering technicians need to develop new skill that will benefit them in their career. These include the ability to work under pressure and solve complex problems.

In addition, they require knowledge of computer software which allows petroleum technicians to design work and keep communication lines open.

What Does a Petroleum Engineering Technologist Do?

Petroleum engineering technologists help petroleum engineers improve drilling technology, maximize field production, and provide technical assistance. Maintenance technicians keep machinery and equipment running smoothly.

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Most petroleum technicians work on-site where crude oil is extracted or refined, and positions are available with oil corporations, testing companies, engineering consulting firms, or government agencies.

Typically, petroleum engineering technicians do the following duties:

  • Evaluate the field sites and design sampling methods, work plans and budgets
  • Measure and record pressures, temperatures, and flow rates at production facilities
  • Calculate well deliverability, hydrocarbon reserves (through volumetric, material balance, and decline curve analysis) and the economic viability of various projects and procedures
  • Perform reservoir surveillance
  • Prepare and implement drilling and workover programs
  • Assess land sales or lease expiries
  • Assess electric and porosity logs for potential hydrocarbon zones
  • Determine zones on a well for testing and coring operations
  • Analyze production well tests
  • Optimize well, gathering system and production facility performance
  • Direct the work required to assemble mechanical and electrical testing instruments used at the well site
  • Design and supervise mud systems or well completions
  • Specify surface equipment (separators, treaters, and storage vessels for gas gathering facilities) or supervise their installation
  • Specify artificial lift systems for different well conditions
  • Recommend processing techniques and implement or monitor chemical and corrosion inhibition programs
  • Conduct environmental impact assessments and manage remediation
  • Supervise processing facilities and drilling and well operations
  • Specify pipeline or flowline systems, or supervise their installation
  • Submit progress reports and manage budgets

What is the Job Outlook For Petroleum Engineering Technology/Technician?

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the employment of petroleum engineering technicians is projected to grow 3 percent from 2025 to 2028, slower than the average for all occupations.

They further said that oil prices will be a major determinant of employment growth. Higher prices can cause oil and gas companies to increase capital investment in new facilities, expand existing production operations, and explore.

In Alberta, the Geological and Petroleum Technologists and Technician’s occupational group are expected to have a below-average annual growth of 0.8% from 2025 to 2025.

Although mastering new software and technology should give better career prospects.

How Much Does a Petroleum Engineering Technician Earn?

According to US BLS, the median annual wage for petroleum engineering technicians petroleum earns $137,720 per year. That is, they earn $66.21 per hour.

According to SAIT, the annual average salary for Petroleum Engineering Technicians is $69,500.

Meanwhile, Salary.com reports that the average Petroleum & Gas Engineering Technologist salary in the United States is $98,600 as of June 28, 2025, but the salary range typically falls between $85,879 and $111,428.

How to Become a Petroleum Engineering Technologist?

Actually, to start a career as a petroleum technician, you’ll need to earn an associate degree.

Here is the procedure of becoming a petroleum engineering technician;

  • Earn an Associate Degree
  • Find an Internship
  • Get Employment
  • Continuing Education

Earn an Associate Degree

Typically, you need to have at least two years of post-secondary training, and this may include an associate degree in petroleum engineering technology.

You may also have a bachelor’s degree in petroleum engineering, geology, or geoscience-related field with extensive work experience or a Master’s degree or Ph.D. in petroleum engineering, geology, or related field of study. What differentiates them is the practical experience required and you must have it to become a petroleum engineering technician.

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You will take calculus, maths, physics, and chemistry courses.

An associate degree program in petroleum engineering technology normally takes two years. Lastly, the minimum educational qualification required to work as a petroleum engineering technologist is a 2-year diploma in technology related to petroleum engineering.

Find an Internship

You require at least 2 years of acceptable technical experience to practice this profession.

These hands-on experiences can be obtained through internships through a school’s PET program. The theoretical experience gotten from the classroom can b used in a real-world industry setting.

Furthermore, tech interns may shadow an experienced petroleum engineering technician. Here, they will gain the practical skills needed and may even get employed.

Get Employment

After graduating, the next thing is to find employment where you will practice all that was learned in school. Graduates of petroleum engineering technology can find a job as petroleum technicians in various industries such as research and development, oil and gas, refineries, etc.

Continuing Education

If you want to advance your career or want to work as a petroleum engineer, consider getting a bachelor’s degree.

You will learn more advanced courses than you did in the two-year diploma course you opted for. Many schools have affiliate universities you can continue your education in after completing the associate degree in petroleum engineering technology.

Some of those schools are; Southern Alberta Institute of Technology Bachelor of Applied Technology Petroleum Engineering, and the University of Calgary Bachelor of Applied Technology Petroleum Engineering.

You can also check out: What Is Mechanical Engineering Technology? | Job Description, Salary, Programs

Petroleum Engineering Technology Programs

Basically, undergraduate programs in petroleum engineering technology provide students with a foundational understanding of drilling, geology, production procedures, formation evaluation, and reservoir engineering.

Petroleum engineering technology degree programs are available in two levels, namely:

  • A two-year Associate of Science in Petroleum Engineering Technology
  • Petroleum Engineering Technology Certificate Level 2

Associate of Science in Petroleum Engineering Technology

An associate’s degree program highlights physics, petroleum data management, geology, calculus, and an internship opportunity.

Because of the practical nature of the field, this degree is carried out in labs and workshops so students can get the adequate practical experience required of them.

Typical coursework in an associate’s degree in petroleum technology program has subjects like;

  • Exploration and Production II
  • Industrial Safety
  • Petroleum Geology
  • Natural Gas Production
  • Well Completions
  • Petroleum Data Management III – Facilities and Performance (Capstone)

All the courses make up to 50 credits.

Petroleum Engineering Technology Certificate Level 2

Basically, this course lasts for approximately one year. Although it is always more than one year but less than two years.

Also, students learn in workshops and laboratory-like in the associate degree. There are theoretical aspects as well.

Typical coursework in petroleum engineering technology certificate level 2 includes;

  • Industrial Safety
  • Introduction to Computer Technology
  • Petroleum Data Management
  • Petroleum Geology
  • Exploration and Production

All the courses make up to 43 units.

Requirements For Petroleum Engineering Technology Programs/Schools

Applicants to these petroleum engineering technology schools and programs will have a high score in their school diplomas.

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In addition, they need to have a strong grasp of math, physics, and chemistry.

Furthermore, they should have at least 60% in Math 30-1 or 75% in Math 30-2, 60% in English Language Arts 30-1 or 75% in English Language Arts 30-2, 60% in Chemistry and physics.

Lastly, they must also demonstrate English Language Proficiency before admission.

What Is The Cost Of Petroleum Engineering Technology Schools?

A petroleum Engineering technology school costs about $ 6,000 yearly for domestic students. Non-Canadian students should expect to pay $19,000 yearly.

Petroleum Engineering Technology Schools In USA

Most schools offer petroleum engineering but not many offer petroleum engineering technology. To this effect, here are some of the schools that offer petroleum engineering technology as a course.

  • Houston Community College
  • Northern Alberta Institute of Technology
  • Southern Alberta Institute of Technology
  • College of North Atlantic (3 years duration)

Southern Alberta Institute of Technology

In this Petroleum Engineering Technology program, you’ll be trained in all areas of the upstream petroleum industry, including exploration, field operations, drilling, economic analysis, and reserves determination.

From the office to the field, graduates will ultimately be responsible for many of the technical activities involved in oil and gas production.

Actually, the tuition for domestic and international students is $5,596 and $18,546  respectively.

Furthermore, in two years, you can get this diploma from this petroleum engineering technology school.

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Northern Alberta Institute of Technology

Actually, this petroleum Engineering Technology school offers petroleum eng tech as a two-year diploma program that will prepare you for employment in the upstream (drilling and production) and midstream (pipeline) energy sectors.

According to SAIT, the world demand for energy is growing and the oil and gas industry will supply most of this energy for decades. Consequently, Western Canada has an abundance of conventional and unconventional energy reserves that will and can provide lucrative careers for petroleum engineering technologists.

In this school, you learn from professionals with standard equipment and in labs and high-tech custom-made simulators. In conclusion, it can be undertaken both in school and virtually.

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Houston Community College

In this prestigious petroleum engineering technology school/program, petroleum Eng Tech is a program designed to prepare students to work as Petroleum Engineering Technicians in the oil and gas and related industries.

Read : Mechanical Engineering VS Mechanical Engineering Technology: Similarities, Difference & Job Outlook

The petroleum industry hires these highly skilled individuals for multiple fields and office positions.

Also, it can be undertaken in two years.



Petroleum Engineering Technology is basically the application of geology and engineering principles in the upstream (drilling and production) and midstream (pipeline) energy sectors.

Actually, petroleum engineering technologists learn and study all areas of the industry — from exploration and drilling to field operations and economic analysis, geology, production procedures, formation evaluation, and reservoir engineering in the oil and gas industry.

If you wish to become a petroleum engineering technician, at least you should earn an associate degree in petroleum engineering technology. All the information on how to become a petroleum engineering technician has been written, including the schools to get the degree from.


  • US BLS – Petroleum Engineering Technician
  • Environmental Science– How to Become a Petroleum Technician: Education and Career Roadmap
  • Study.com – Petroleum Technician Career Information
  • Alberta – Petroleum Engineering Technologist


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