Research Scientist – Job Description

Research scientists work in every area of scientific study, from chemistry through biology to medicine and maths – and everywhere in between, but what qualifications to be a research scientist?

The work is all about researching, conducting and analysing scientific experiments.

Specific disciplines will require different work requirements, but general duties will normally include working on and building up research proposals, creating, proposing and conducting experiments, analysing the results of those experiments, developing any products that might result and applying for grants to fund new or existing research projects.

A strong academic background is vital, and you’ll also need to be good at time and people management, an organised problem-solver who can show initiative while working within a team and who can communicate well with fellow scientists as well as with more hard-nosed business people.

The least that will be expected of you if you want a job in this field is a relevant degree. Those who’ve studied biochemistry, biomedical science, pharmacology, microbiology, ecology or the natural sciences are especially sought after, as is anyone who’s gained some extra experience through work placements.

A PhD is vital if you want a more senior role.

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National Institute for Medical Research
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The Wellcome Trust
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Universities and Colleges Admissions Service
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