Exam Bulletin - Instrument Technician, Air Quality Exams Bulletin

State Air Resources Board

Multiple Testing Departments. Please see list of Departments.

Exam Code: EX-2995

Examination Plans Included:


Final Filing Date: Applications are accepted on a continuous basis.

Classification Details

INSTRUMENT TECHNICIAN, AIR QUALITY: $4,214.00 - $6,635.00 per Month *1
*1: This does not reflect the 3% general salary increase effective July 1, 2024.

View the INSTRUMENT TECHNICIAN, AIR QUALITY classification specification.

Application Instructions

Upcoming Filing Cutoff Dates:

  • 7/17/2024
  • 1/31/2025

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 be processed in the next group.

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):


For all Classifications, once you have participated in any of the following examinations, you may not recompete for 12 months:

Exam Code(s):


For INSTRUMENT TECHNICIAN, AIR QUALITY, once you have participated in any of the following examinations, you may not recompete for 12 months:

Exam Code(s):

  • EX-02995

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:

  • C/O ASD - Examinations and Recruitment Unit
    State Air Resources Board
    Examinations and Recruitment Unit
    P.O Box 2815
    Sacramento, CA 95812

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:

  • State Air Resources Board
    Examinations and Recruitment Unit
    1001 I Street, Floor 5
    Sacramento, CA 95814
    8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Please email exams@arb.ca.gov if dropping off hard copy application.

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.

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.

Unless otherwise stated in the Minimum Qualifications, qualifying experience may be combined on a proportionate basis if the requirements stated below include more than one pattern and are distinguished as "Either" 1, "or" 2, "or" 3, etc. For example, applicants possessing qualifying experience amounting to 50% of the required time of Pattern 1 and additional experience amounting to 50% of the required time of Pattern 2 may be accepted to an examination as meeting 100% of the overall experience requirement.


Pattern I

Two years of experience in the California state service as an Air Resources Technician II installing, maintaining, preparing, and operating automatic electronic air pollution measuring instrumentation and other sampling equipment for the detection of atmospheric pollutants.

Pattern II 

Two years of experience in the operation, maintenance, and repair of electronic instrumentation, control mechanisms, or similar devices involving the application of electronic, physical, and chemical principles.

(Education in electronic technology or a closely related field in an accredited college, university, technical, or trade school beyond the 12th grade level may be substituted on a year-for-year basis.)

Position Description


The Instrument Technician, Air Quality, class is a technical class in which incumbents perform electronics and instrumentation repair work at the entry, journey, and advanced journey levels. Incumbents install, maintain, test, repair, and operate automatic electronic air monitoring instrumentation, meteorological instrumentation, and data acquisition equipment; operate personal computers, modems, and associated peripheral equipment such as printers and video monitors; fabricate and connect tubing and electrical wiring in accordance with plans, electronic schematics, and wiring diagrams; check, adjust, repair, and calibrate a wide variety of digital and analog electronic recording and indicating devices and equipment; use, maintain, repair, and adjust electronic test and physical measuring instruments such as photometers, oscilloscopes, frequency counters, manometers, flow meters/controllers, voltmeters, ammeters, and potentiometers; collect air samples and perform routine tests and measurements; install and fabricate complete air monitoring stations and field source test systems; read, record, tabulate, and edit strip chart data and electronic data files; keep records of work performed and of supplies used; order supplies as needed; and prepare reports. Positions in these classes are not supervisory.

Range A is the entry level. In a learning capacity, incumbents will become proficient in the installation, maintenance, repair, and operation of electronic and electromechanical air quality measuring instrumentation and equipment. Employees exercise little independent judgment when dealing with complex operational and servicing problems with the instruments and work is carefully reviewed.

Range B is the full journey level. Incumbents exercise independent judgment in resolving installation, maintenance, repair, and operational problems in the laboratory and in the field and perform corrective measures without technical directions. This level will independently troubleshoot electronic instrumentation, install air pollution measuring equipment, and investigate and repair air monitoring station and/or source test operational malfunctions.

Incumbents in Range C personally perform the most complex and difficult instrument work and/or act as team leader for a group of lower level technicians; lead and/or perform the siting, installation, adjustment, repair, and maintenance of complex microprocessor-based electronic air pollution measuring instrumentation and systems and develop instrument operating procedures; train lower level technicians and air pollution control district staff; assist in design and modification of digital and analog electronic circuitry; develop new or improved air sampling and monitoring techniques; and prepare draft specifications for instrument procurement.

Education equivalent to completion of the 12th grade and completion of a two-year training program in electronics at a recognized, accredited technical school.

  • Fresno County
  • Imperial County
  • Kern County
  • Riverside County
  • Sacramento County
  • Stanislaus County

For information regarding position location(s), please refer to the Eligible List Information section.

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.

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:

(Ranges A and B)

Knowledge of: Basic electronic fundamentals, electronic circuit troubleshooting techniques, and the use of electronic test equipment. 

Ability to: Read and write at a level required for successful job performance; read plans, blueprints, schematics, and electrical wiring diagrams; learn the theory of operation of scientific electronic measuring devices and microprocessor-based instrumentation; install, operate, repair, and maintain electronic, microprocessor-based air pollution measuring instrumentation, meteorological measuring equipment, data acquisition systems, and air sample collection systems; recognize, trace, and correct instrument malfunctions and sources or error using electronic test equipment; operate data acquisition equipment and personal computers; work with hand tools and soldering equipment; keep records, edit data, and prepare reports; and carry and lift instruments to test site heights in the laboratory or at field locations.

(Range C)

Knowledge of: All of the above, and principles underlying the construction, operation, and use of scientific electronic microprocessor-based air pollution measuring instruments, complete air pollution monitoring systems, data acquisition systems, and air quality sample collection systems.

Ability to: All of the above, and review and prepare specifications for air pollution measuring instrumentation, meteorological measuring equipment, and data acquisition systems; assist engineers in designing new equipment involved in air pollution monitoring and develop new or improved sampling techniques; lead over lower level technicians in the installation and operation of complete air monitoring stations and/or source test instrumentation; read plans, blueprints, and electrical wiring diagrams and make rough drawings and sketches.

Eligible List Information

A Departmental Open eligible list for the INSTRUMENT TECHNICIAN, AIR QUALITY Classification will be established for:

  • State Air Resources Board

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.

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

  • CA Environmental Protection Agency
  • State Air Resources Board

Contact Information

Questions regarding this examination should be directed to:

State Air Resources Board
C/O ASD - Examinations and Recruitment Unit
State Air Resources Board
1001 I Street, Floor 5
Sacramento, CA 95814

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.

State Air Resources Board 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)