Exam Bulletin - Forestry Technician (1085)

Department of Forestry & Fire Protection

Exam Code: EX-1570

Examination Plans Included:


Final Filing Date: 6/15/2024

Classification Details

FORESTRY TECHNICIAN: $3,730.00 - $5,287.00 per Month

View the FORESTRY TECHNICIAN classification specification.

Application Instructions

Final Filing Date: 6/15/2024.

Examination/Employment Application (STD 678) must be received or postmarked by the filing date indicated above. Applications postmarked, personally delivered or received via interoffice mail after the filing date will not be accepted.

Dates printed on Mobile Bar Codes, such as the Quick Response (QR) Codes available at the USPS, are not considered Postmark dates for the purpose of determining timely filing of an application.

If using the United States Postal Service (USPS) for delivery, there is no guarantee that your application will be postmarked and arrive by the final filing date. If your application does not have a postmark and arrives after the final filing date, your application may not be accepted into the examination. Therefore, to ensure timely delivery of your application, it is recommended that you use either parcel service, or certified mail. Using one of these options will provide proof the application was sent prior to the final filing date.

Who Should Apply:

The information below will help you determine which classification(s) is(are) appropriate for you. Applicants must meet the Minimum Qualifications as stated on this bulletin to compete in this examination.

Open and Open, Non-Promotional Examination(s):


All applicants must meet the education and/or experience requirements by the final filing date of June 15, 2024, unless otherwise noted.

  • Once you have participated in this examination, you may not test again for six (6) months.
  • Applicants who have not passed probation in this classification are encouraged to apply.

How To Apply:

Submit an Examination/Employment Application (STD 678) to apply for this examination.

Electronic applications can be submitted through your account at www.CalCareers.ca.gov.

You may apply by mail to:

  • Department of Forestry & Fire Protection (CAL FIRE)
    Attention: Examination Unit
    710 Riverpoint Court
    West Sacramento, CA 95605

Indicate the Examination Code and Classification(s) on your Examination/Employment Application (STD 678).

You may drop off your application and any applicable or required documents at:

  • Department of Forestry & Fire Protection (CAL FIRE)
    Attention: Examination Unit
    710 Riverpoint Court
    West Sacramento, CA 95605
    8:30 AM - 4:00 PM

Indicate the Examination Code and Classification(s) on your Examination/Employment Application (STD 678). All applicants must provide proof of identification. Accepted forms of identification are: 1) a photo identification card or 2) two forms of signed identification.

Please note the following:

1). A State Application (STD 678) is REQUIRED and must be submitted.

2). A Training and Experience (T&E) Narrative document is also REQUIRED and must be submitted.

3). A copy of your unofficial transcripts and/or diploma showing proof of coursework/completion/graduation is required ONLY IF you are using education to meet the minimum qualifications (Pattern I). 

4). All applicants must include "from" and "to" employment dates (month/day/year), time base, and applicable civil service class titles on their STD 678. Applications received without this information may be rejected.


The following items must be submitted with your Examination/Employment Application form. Failure to submit these items may result in rejection of your application.

  • Other - Training and Experience Narrative

Special Testing Arrangements:

If you require assistance or alternative testing arrangements due to a disability, indicate on your application that you need reasonable accommodation. You will be contacted by a representative of the testing department to make the necessary arrangements. If you have not been contacted by the time you receive notification of testing, please contact the testing department listed in the Contact section of this bulletin.

If you are unable to submit your application or complete the test due to a disability, please contact the testing department listed in the Contact section of this bulletin.

Minimum Qualifications

All applicants must meet the education and/or experience requirements as stated on this exam bulletin to be accepted to the examination.


Either I

Education: Equivalent to 15 semester units of college in forestry, natural resource management, conservation, or a closely related subject.


Experience: Six months of experience in practical resource management, conservation, or field work in a State of California resources agency department or in a forest management/timber harvesting operation. (Qualifying experience includes: reforestation, timber harvest operations, urban forestry, or other related forestry/nursery work; or environmental resource protection work including Resource Protection Trainee/Fire Prevention Assistant, or related fire control experience in the Resources Agency or as a corps member in a California Conservation Corps/California Department of Forestry fire center.) OR

One year of urban resource community organizing work such as tree planting, community gardening, park development, and civil landscape beautification programs. AND

Education: Equivalent to completion of the 12th grade.


Hearing, physical strength, dexderity and agility necessary to perform the duties of the position; and aptitude and liking for forestry work.

Position Description


This is the normal entry training level to the series. Under close supervision, incumbents learn to perform routine technical resource management assignments of average difficulty. Incumbents will perform basic fire control assignments during fire season and occasionally at other times. Incumbents entering State service at this level will receive in a timely manner during the probationary period, and prior to working in emergency assignments training in the Department's "Basic Fire Fighter" training as is required for Fire Fighter II. One of the requirements for permanent status in this class is successful completion of the training course. Incumbents may receive additional training, as required, to perform their assigned functions, in such areas as introduction to surveying, map reading, cruising, dendrology, and basic program areas.


Willingness to work long and irregular hours, to work in remote parts of the State, to work on Sundays and holidays, and during summer season to remain on duty 24 hours a day, as required, restricted to duty assignments; adaptability, tact, and neat personal experience.


Posession of a valid California driver license of the appropriate class issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles.

Examination Information

This examination consists of the following component(s):

Component OrderComponent TypeComponent DuePercentage of Final Score
1Supplemental ReportWith Application100%

Components that are due with your application will be scored and will count toward your final examination result. Failure to submit these items may result in disqualification or elimination from the examination.

A final score of 70% must be attained to be placed on the eligible list.


In this type of examination the T&E Narrative document IS THE EXAMINATION.

The T&E Narrative is a written document that responds to the questions listed below.

An evaluation of the Narrative documents will be conducted by a rating panel consisting of CAL FIRE subject matter experts (SMEs) (in July 2024). The rating panel will compare each candidates' Narrative responses against standardized, pre-determined rating criteria. The examination questions below were derived from the knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) listed in this bulletin.

When preparing your T&E Narrative document please respond to the following three (3) examination questions:

1. Use personal or professional experience to describe what safety hazards may be encountered when performing duties in a wildland environment and how you would address them. 

2. As a CAL FIRE Forestry Technician, you will work as a member of a team. Describe a personal or professional experience where you had to work as a member of a team to accomplish a task. How did the team work to accomplish this task and what role did you play? Please provide at least two (2) examples. 

3. Name at least three (3) of CAL FIRE's Resource Management Programs and describe their functions. 

In addition to responding to the questions above, your T&E Narrative document MUST follow the instructions listed below. Failure to follow these instructions may result in disqualification from the testing process:

  • Please use Arial font, size no smaller than 10. 
  • Limit your responses to no more than a total of three (3) pages (Only the first three pages will be scored).
  • Your document MUST be typewritten (NO handwritten narratives).
  • Please clearly label the number that corresponds to the question to which you are responding. 
  • You may include multiple responses on a single page. 
  • Please place your name on each page of your narrative. 


Complete and submit the following items with your application. These will be scored and count toward your final examination result. Failure to submit these items will result in disqualification from the examination.

In addition to evaluating the applicant's relative knowledge, skill and ability as demonstrated by quality and breadth of education/experience, emphasis in each test component will be on measuring competitively, relative to job demands, each applicant's:

Knowledge of:


  1. General resource management principles, practice, and conservations techniques to meet the departments objectives.
  2. Various Department of Forestry and Fire Protection program functions and their elements to perform the duties as required to fulfill the Department’s mission.
  3. Communication devices to effectively communicate with staff, stakeholders, agencies, and the public.
  4. Basic fire science, prevention, firefighting methods and tactics to support the protection of life, property, and the environment.
  5. Map reading and dendrology to complete forestry tasks.
  6. Word processing, spreadsheet software, electronic mail, and calendaring software to prepare correspondence and reports.
  7. The maintenance, application, and replacement of Personal Protective Equipment to ensure personal/personnel safety.
  8. Mathematics and their applications in forestry to accurately complete assigned daily duties.

Skill to:


  1. Observe the environment and exercise situational awareness to ensure personal/personnel safety.
  2. Operate appropriate Department vehicles in all weather conditions and terrain in accordance with applicable laws, regulations, and Department policies and procedures to ensure safe and effective operations.
  3. Utilize computer and mobile equipment technologies and related software to effectively communicate with staff, stakeholders, agencies, and public or private entities.
  4. Operate computer programs efficiently to perform daily job functions.  

Ability to:


  1. Understand instruction to carry out assignments as directed by supervisor.
  2. Work independently or in a group setting to effectively perform collaborative tasks.
  3. Communicate with co-workers, supervisors, other agencies, and the public to effectively share information.
  4. Utilize good judgement and take appropriate action in emergency situations to ensure personal/personnel and public safety.
  5. Adapt to changing work demands, priorities, and environments to meet program needs.
  6. Organize, prioritize, and complete work assignments in a timely and efficient manner to meet program objectives.
  7. Understand and employ good safety practices and exercise situational awareness to ensure personal/personnel safety.
  8. Accept increasing responsibility in the level of difficulty of tasks performed to improve performance and enhance career development opportunities.
  9. Travel long distances for extended periods in emergency and non-emergency circumstances to accomplish the responsibilities of the Department.
  10. Remain calm and perform effectively in high stress situations to perform job duties.
  11. Perform work with attention to detail in an accurate and thorough manner to meet program objectives.
  12. Read and interpret maps (e.g., topographical, road maps, watershed maps) for navigation and project planning purposes.
  13. Perform arduous and physically demanding work in all weather conditions and terrain to meet the demands of the Department’s mission.

Eligible List Information

A Departmental Open eligible list for the FORESTRY TECHNICIAN Classification will be established for:

  • Department of Forestry & Fire Protection

The names of successful competitors will be merged onto the eligible list(s) in order of final score regardless of test date. Eligibility expires 12 months after it is established. Applicants must then retake the examination to reestablish eligibility.

Resulting Eligibility List(s) will be used to fill vacancies throughout the State of California.

Successful candidates from this administration will be merged onto the current, existing eligibility list for the Forestry Technician classification. Candidates' list eligibility is guaranteed for a minimum of 12 months, but may be extended up to 48 months, depending on the needs of the Department.

It is recommended that candidates apply for this examination if one or more of the following is true:

  • You are a Limited Term (LT) hire.
  • You have NOT passed probation in this classification.
  • You are a Temporary Appointment (TAU) hire.
  • You are not on the current eligibility list.

Veterans' Preference will be granted for this examination. Veterans' Preference is an assistance program for veterans, veteran widows and widowers, and spouses of 100% disabled veterans who seek employment with the state. Veterans' Preference is also extended to currently serving military members nearing their retirement or separation date.

You are not eligible for Veteran's Preference if you are:

  • A veteran who has been dishonorably discharged or released.
  • A veteran, widow or widower of a veteran, or spouse of a 100 percent disabled veteran who currently has permanent civil service status. (Permanent civil service status is the status of an employee who is lawfully retained in his/her position after completion of the applicable probationary period. This does not include limited term).

Veterans' Preference is codified in Government Code Sections 18973 – 18979.

Veteran status is verified by the California Department of Human Resources (CalHR). Directions to apply for Veterans' Preference are on the Veterans' Preference Application (Std. Form 1093), which is available at www.CalCareers.ca.gov, and the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Career Credits are not granted for examination(s) administered on an Open basis or a Promotional basis.

Testing Departments

  • Department of Forestry & Fire Protection

Contact Information

Questions regarding this examination should be directed to:

CAL FIRE Examination Unit
710 Riverpoint Court
West Sacramento, CA 95605
Phone: (916) 894-9580

CAL FIRE Reasonable Accommodation Coordinator
710 Riverpoint Court
West Sacramento, CA 95605
Phone: (916) 894-9570 ext. Option 3

California Relay Service: 1-800-735-2929 (TTY), 1-800-735-2922 (Voice). TTY is a Telecommunications Device for the Deaf, and is reachable only from phones equipped with a TTY Device.

Equal Opportunity Employer

The State of California is an equal opportunity employer to all, regardless of age, ancestry, color, disability (mental and physical), exercising the right to family care and medical leave, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, medical condition, military or veteran status, national origin, political affiliation, race, religious creed, sex (includes pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding and related medical conditions), and sexual orientation.

Drug Free Statement

It is an objective of the State of California to achieve a drug-free State work place. Any applicant for State employment will be expected to behave in accordance with this objective, because the use of illegal drugs is inconsistent with the law of the State, the rules governing civil service, and the special trust placed in public servants.

General Information

Examination and/or Employment Application (STD 678) forms are available at the California Department of Human Resources, local offices of the Employment Development Department, and through your CalCareer Account (www.CalCareers.ca.gov).

If you meet the requirements stated on this examination bulletin, you may take this examination, which is competitive. Possession of the entrance requirements does not assure a place on the eligible list. Your performance in the examination described in this bulletin will be rated against a predetermined job-related rating, and all applicants who pass will be ranked according to their scores.

Department of Forestry & Fire Protection reserves the right to revise the examination plan to better meet the needs of the service, if the circumstances under which this examination was planned change. Such revision will be in accordance with civil service laws and rules and all applicants will be notified.

General Qualifications: Applicants must possess essential personal qualifications including integrity, initiative, dependability, good judgment, the ability to work cooperatively with others, and a state of health consistent with the ability to perform the assigned duties of the class. A medical examination may be required. In open examinations, investigation may be made of employment records and personal history and fingerprinting may be required.

Eligible Lists: Eligible lists established by competitive examination, regardless of date, must be used in the following order: 1) sub-divisional promotional, 2) departmental promotional, 3) multi-departmental promotional, 4) service-wide promotional, 5) departmental open, 6) open. When there are two lists of the same kind, the older must be used first. Eligible lists will expire in one to four years unless otherwise stated on the bulletin.

High School Equivalence: Equivalence to completion of the 12th grade may be demonstrated in any one of the following ways: 1) passing the General Education Development (GED) Test; 2) completion of 12 semester units of college-level work; 3) certification from the State Department of Education, a local school board, or high school authorities that the competitor is considered to have education equivalent to graduation from high school; or 4) for clerical and accounting classes, substitution of business college work in place of high school on a year-for-year basis.

Accepted applicants must provide proof of identification at each in-person test session. Acceptable identification consists of a photo identification card or two forms of signed identification.

Application Methods:
Electronic (Your CalCareer Account)
By Mail
In Person (see bulletin for details)
Alternate Application Process

While we recommend that you utilize your CalCareer Account to take advantage of all the tools available, you may choose to apply for this examination without using your account. In this case, print and complete the Exam Application Package Checklist and include it if you submit a hard copy application.

Exam Application Package Checklist

Blank Application Form (STD678)

Accommodation Request (STD679)