Laboratory Assistant

Updated: 4 months ago
Deadline: 06 Jun 2023

This competition is restricted to internal applicants of the University of Alberta. Please indicate your internal status using the "Advertisement" drop down menu when applying.

This position is a part of the Non-Academic Staff Association (NASA).

This position has a term length of one year less a day from the date of hire.

Location - North campus

Working for the University of Alberta

The University of Alberta acknowledges that we are located on Treaty 6 territory, and respects the histories, languages and cultures of First Nations, Métis, Inuit and all First Peoples of Canada, whose presence continues to enrich our vibrant community.

The University of Alberta is teeming with change makers, community builders, and world shapers who lead with purpose each and every day. We are home to more than 40,000 students in 200+ undergraduate and 500+ graduate programs, over 13,000 faculty and staff, 260,000 alumni worldwide and have been recognized as one of Canada’s Greenest Employers for over a decade.

Your work will have a meaningful influence on a fascinating cross section of people—from our students and stakeholders, to our renowned researchers and innovators who are quite literally curing diseases, making discoveries and generating solutions that make the world healthier, safer, stronger, and more just.

Department summary

The Natural Resources Analytical Laboratory (NRAL) performs analysis on selected chemical constituents of soil, plant and water samples in support of research and extension activities.  NRAL clients include staff and students from the University of Alberta and other Universities, provincial and federal government agencies, and industry

Position summary

The laboratory assistant, working under the direction of the NRAL Analytical Services Laboratory Supervisor, will perform a variety of routine tasks within clearly defined standard operating procedures (SOPs). The Laboratory Assistant assists NRAL staff in the analysis of soil, water, and plant samples by preparing samples, entering data, and performing general lab tasks.


  • Sorts, subsamples and label samples (soils, water, and plants)
  • Prepares laboratory samples for analysis, including drying, grinding, weighing, extraction and digestion according to SOPs
  • Prepares laboratory reagents according to SOPs 
  • Conducts general laboratory tasks, including cleaning glass wear and bottles, keeping counters and laboratory areas clean and tidy, and other tasks as required by supervisor 
  • Safely stores and disposes of laboratory waste according to SOPs, complying with all WHIMIS and University safety policies.
  • Maintains laboratory records and logs, enters data as needed
  • Other related department duties as required 


  • Minimum of a high school diploma supplemented with 1-year experience in an environmental analysis lab setting
  • Familiarity with Microsoft Excel
  • Experience performing environmental sample preparation techniques is strongly desired, including
    • Drying and sieving soils
    • Fine-grinding samples (Ball-mill) 
    • Soil extractions
    • Saturated soil paste preparation 
  • Strong communication, problem-solving and organizational skills
  • Effective time-management and multitasking skills are essential
  • Proficient in standard laboratory techniques, such as pipetting, filtering, sample weighing, and working with volumetric glassware
  • Ability to understand and follow standard operating procedures (SOPs)
  • Ability to perform necessary calculations for solution preparations, dilutions, etc.
  • Ability to lift up to 50lbs minimum
  • Ability to prioritize tasks and meet deadlines

Note: Online applications are accepted until midnight Mountain Standard Time of the closing date.

We thank all applicants for their interest; however, only those individuals selected for an interview will be contacted.

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