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Occupation information for

Prepress Technicians and Workers
District Of Columbia

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Format and proof text and images submitted by designers and clients into finished pages that can be printed. Includes digital and photo typesetting. May produce printing plates.

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Currently Employed: 470

Projected Annual Job Openings: 10

Typical Hourly Wage: $36.21 - $38.61

Typical Annual Salary: $75,300 - $80,300

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typical training

Typical education needed for entry: Postsecondary non-degree award

Typical work experience needed for a job in this occupation: None

Typical on-the-job training once you have a job in this occupation: None

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typical job duties

  • Enter, store, and retrieve information on computer-aided equipment.
  • Enter, position, and alter text size, using computers, to make up and arrange pages so that printed materials can be produced.
  • Operate and maintain laser plate-making equipment that converts electronic data to plates without the use of film.
  • Operate presses to print proofs of plates, monitoring printing quality to ensure that it is adequate.
  • Examine photographic images for obvious imperfections prior to plate making.
  • Monitor contact between cover glass and masks inside vacuum frames to prevent flaws resulting from overexposure or light reflection.
  • Examine unexposed photographic plates to detect flaws or foreign particles prior to printing.
  • Transfer images from master plates to unexposed plates, and immerse plates in developing solutions to develop images.
  • Lower vacuum frames onto plate-film assemblies, activate vacuums to establish contact between film and plates, and set timers to activate ultraviolet lights that expose plates.
  • Examine finished plates to detect flaws, verify conformity with master plates, and measure dot sizes and centers, using light boxes and microscopes.

tools & technology

  • Densitometers
  • Electronic media or data duplicating equipment
  • Scanners
  • Stackers
  • Thermal transfer printer for commercial printing applications

  • Desktop publishing software
  • Document management software
  • Graphics or photo imaging software
  • Internet protocol IP multimedia subsystem software
  • Video creation and editing software

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