Trainee Laboratory Technician (Technician Level 1)

Job Description

The new Living Systems Institute creates a state of the art environment in which cell and molecular biologists, mathematicians, physicists, biomedical scientists and engineers can work together in a common space. This integration is designed to foster innovative, interdisciplinary research into the fundamental molecular and cellular processes underlying human, animal and plant biology and disease; our aim is to generate knowledge of ‘living systems’ that can be translated into new predictive, diagnostic and therapeutic applications.

The Living Systems Institute promotes cutting edge research within an environment that recognises the aesthetic, ethical, ecological, societal as well as economic implications of scientific discovery. Our approaches range from the most basic, curiosity driven investigations through to problem-driven, goal oriented translational research.



Purpose of Role

The primary function of this role is to provide laboratory support for Bioscience research laboratories on the Streatham campus. Based in the Living Systems Institute (LSI), the role holder will work with the Laboratory Manager to support academic staff and research students working in a suite of Class II research laboratories with facilities for tissue culture, microscopy, molecular biology, biochemistry and other research areas.

Duties and Responsibilities

  1. To maintain stocks of culture media, buffers and other reagents as requested.
  2. To maintain a tidy and well-organised working environment in accordance with health and safety procedures and regulatory guidelines.
  3. To provide laboratory cleaning support (e.g. washing glassware, cleaning of technical equipment). Under the direction of the laboratory manager / assistant laboratory manager, to provide specialist cleaning services to research and technical staff.
  4. To use basic technical laboratory equipment (e.g. autoclave) after appropriate training. To help prepare/sterilise glassware and tips for use.
  5. To identify any problems in the laboratory environment and report to the laboratory manager and/or laboratory users.
  6. To keep accurate records of experiments and data

Longer-term duties and responsibilities

  1. When requested assist in the care and welfare of microorganisms and plants, which may include watering, assist in husbandry and maintaining facilities (once the post holder has received appropriate training).
  2. Under guidance, to ensure maintenance of laboratory resources (e.g. ordering replacement stock, assisting with the collection of deliveries from Stores) as required.
  3. To support research in laboratories by assisting with setting up and monitoring scientific experiments
  4. There will be opportunities for project work once the role holder has demonstrated self-sufficiency in their main duties.

Training and Development opportunities

The University of Exeter has Corporate Affiliation with the Institute of Science and Technology (IST) – one of the professional bodies licensed to award RSciTech, RSci and CSci. There is an expectation that role holders would work towards professional registration with the IST as a Registered Science Technician (RSciTech) or Registered Scientist.

The LSI is a leading centre for biosciences research and there is ample opportunity for networking with world leading experts in their field.

There are frequent events that occur within the LSI, and around the university campus, including seminars and conferences – attendance is encouraged!

Level of Support

The LSI Technical Team meet regularly and function as a close-knit and supportive unit. The University of Exeter has an internal, informal mentoring scheme and there are many experienced technical staff within the College of Life and Environmental to approach. It is expected that role holders would be proactive in seeking a mentor for themselves (at the direction of line manager and senior managers)

Other Benefits, Rewards and Recognition

This internship / GBP position provides all of the University of Exeter staff benefits available to ‘regular’ members of staff, including local and online discounts, access to the NUS Extra scheme, cycle to work scheme and some discounted travel



  • Role holders will be expected to hold a relevant (biosciences) undergraduate degree.

Skills and Understanding

  • Ability to communicate effectively
  • Ability to use own initiative
  • Ability to maintain accurate and detailed records
  • Competent IT user (including MS Office suite of programs)

Prior Experience

  • Evidence of team working
  • Evidence of excellent attention to detail

Behavioural Characteristics/ Personal Qualities and Attributes

  • Able to work in a team
  • Able to work individually with minimal supervision
  • Ability to follow complex instructions
  • Reliable, organised and methodical with good attention to detail
  • Ability to prioritise tasks and work to tight deadlines
  • Proactive attitude to personal and professional development
  • Keen and enthusiastic to learn new skills

Other Requirements

  • Graduate of a UK university within the last 3 years
  • Right to work in the UK for the duration of the internship.
  • A degree with an industry placement would be advantageous

To apply for this role please complete our internship application which can be downloaded here: Please send your completed form to us by clicking APPLY NOW.


Key dates:

  • Closing date: 22/05/19
  • Interview date: 04/06/19
  • Start date:19/06/19
  • End date: 18/06/20