What is a Clinical Research Assistant

Clinical research assistants work in laboratories or healthcare facilities as members of a research team. They assist in clinical trials and scientific studies, finding subjects, documenting processes, and collecting data. They contribute to the analysis of the assembled data as well and work on evaluating the results.

You will work under the supervision of a clinical research associate or the lab manager. You might be tasked with collecting samples, recruiting volunteers, attending study meetings, or preparing research material. You will have to perform safety and quality checks on equipment daily, order stock if necessary, and answer patient inquiries.

This list of duties is far from exhaustive, of course. The role of a clinical research assistant is highly varied and exciting. It requires patience and careful attention to detail, and in-depth knowledge on the subject of the research. A bachelor's in life sciences is generally required to get on board.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a Clinical Research Assistant. For example, did you know that they make an average of $18.5 an hour? That's $38,490 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 6% and produce 3,700 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Clinical Research Assistant Do

There are certain skills that many Clinical Research Assistants have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed Communication skills, Interpersonal skills and Leadership skills.

Learn more about what a Clinical Research Assistant does

How To Become a Clinical Research Assistant

If you're interested in becoming a Clinical Research Assistant, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 66.8% of Clinical Research Assistants have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 13.2% of Clinical Research Assistants have master's degrees. Even though most Clinical Research Assistants have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a Clinical Research Assistant. When we researched the most common majors for a Clinical Research Assistant, we found that they most commonly earn Bachelor's Degree degrees or Master's Degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on Clinical Research Assistant resumes include Associate Degree degrees or Doctoral Degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a Clinical Research Assistant. In fact, many Clinical Research Assistant jobs require experience in a role such as Research Assistant. Meanwhile, many Clinical Research Assistants also have previous career experience in roles such as Internship or Volunteer.

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  1. Parexel Jobs (42)
  2. Pfizer Jobs (16)
  3. Boston Medical Center Jobs (21)
  4. Massachusetts General Hospital Jobs (45)
  5. University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science Jobs (32)
Average Salary
$38,490
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
6%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
107,552
Job Openings
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Average Salary for a Clinical Research Assistant

Clinical Research Assistants in America make an average salary of $38,490 per year or $19 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $51,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $28,000 per year.
Average Salary
$38,490
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12 Clinical Research Assistant Resume Examples

Learn How To Write a Clinical Research Assistant Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Clinical Research Assistant resumes and compiled some information about how to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Clinical Research Assistant Resume Examples And Templates

And if you’re looking for a job, here are the five top employers hiring now:

  1. Parexel Jobs (42)
  2. Pfizer Jobs (16)
  3. Boston Medical Center Jobs (21)
  4. Massachusetts General Hospital Jobs (45)
  5. University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science Jobs (32)

Choose From 10+ Customizable Clinical Research Assistant Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Clinical Research Assistant templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Clinical Research Assistant resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Clinical Research Assistant Resume
Clinical Research Assistant Resume

Clinical Research Assistant Demographics

Clinical Research Assistant Gender Statistics

female

73.2 %

male

26.8 %

Clinical Research Assistant Ethnicity Statistics

White

72.7 %

Asian

13.9 %

Hispanic or Latino

8.5 %

Clinical Research Assistant Foreign Languages Spoken Statistics

Spanish

50.1 %

French

12.2 %

Chinese

5.5 %
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Clinical Research Assistant Education

Clinical Research Assistant Majors

22.4 %
7.1 %

Clinical Research Assistant Degrees

Bachelors

66.8 %

Masters

13.2 %

Associate

8.4 %

Top Colleges for Clinical Research Assistants

1. University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor, MI • Private

In-State Tuition
$15,262
Enrollment
30,079

2. Columbia University in the City of New York

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$59,430
Enrollment
8,216

3. Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, MD • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,740
Enrollment
5,567

4. Duke University

Durham, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,695
Enrollment
6,596

5. Hunter College of the City University of New York

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,182
Enrollment
16,205

6. SUNY Stony Brook

Stony Brook, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,625
Enrollment
17,407

7. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

8. New York University

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,828
Enrollment
26,339

9. University of South Florida

Tampa, FL • Private

In-State Tuition
$6,410
Enrollment
31,321

10. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451
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Online Courses For Clinical Research Assistant That You May Like

Good Clinical Practice (ICH GCP) for Clinical Research
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The Simplest Guide to Clinical Trials Data Analysis with SAS
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Step into the world of Pharmaceutical industry Clinical Trials Clinical Research Biostatistics Data Management SAS...

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Top Skills For a Clinical Research Assistant

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 7.7% of Clinical Research Assistants listed Clinical Trials on their resume, but soft skills such as Communication skills and Interpersonal skills are important as well.

1. Connecticut

Total Clinical Research Assistant Jobs:
617
Highest 10% Earn:
$64,000
Location Quotient:
1.14
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Maine

Total Clinical Research Assistant Jobs:
332
Highest 10% Earn:
$53,000
Location Quotient:
1.53
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. New Jersey

Total Clinical Research Assistant Jobs:
1,675
Highest 10% Earn:
$62,000
Location Quotient:
1.29
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Clinical Research Assistants

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Top Clinical Research Assistant Employers

Most Common Employers For Clinical Research Assistant

RankCompanyZippia ScoreAverage Clinical Research Assistant SalaryAverage Salary
1$55,386
2$48,555
3$44,470
4$43,282
5$43,175
6$42,645

Clinical Research Assistant Videos

Becoming a Clinical Research Assistant FAQs

How do I become a CRA with no experience?

To become a CRA with no experience requires work experience. To become a clinical research associate (CRA) requires only a high school diploma and work experience.

To become a certified CRA with a high school diploma, you will need somewhere between 3,000 and 3,500 hours of work experience.

These candidates often start in support positions assisting a more experienced or certified CRA with mundane tasks. An entry-level worker can earn increased responsibilities through a demonstrated capacity to learn the regulations, protocols, and ethical considerations.

Requirements to become a certified CRA with no degree include:

  • Complete two full-time years of CRA work within five years, or 3,500 hours of part-time work ACRP CCRA

  • Complete 3,000 hours performing essential duties

  • Submit a resume documenting and demonstrating job performance

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How much do clinical research assistants make?

Clinical research assistants make $39,492 a year, on average. That equates to $18.99 an hour. This pay is extremely low compared with other technical careers and careers requiring a college degree. That is because it is an entry-level role that provides essential training.

The average pay range for clinical research assistants is $29,000 to $53,000 annually. The pay varies based on location, industry, and other demographics.

Clinical research assistant pay varies based on location. Clinical research assistants average less than $40,000 annually in over half of the U.S. states, with Nebraska and Utah paying the lowest.

The highest-paying states for clinical research assistants are:

  • Maine: 59,507

  • Connecticut: 57,961

  • Delaware: $53,042

Clinical research assistant pay varies based on industry, with those working in pharmaceuticals, health care, and education yielding the highest average annual salaries.

Clinical research pay also varies along demographic lines. More specifically, Asian clinical research assistants make roughly 10% more than other races. And doctoral-level clinical research assistants make roughly 10% more than those with bachelor's degrees.

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What qualifications do you need to be a research assistant?

The qualifications you need to be a research assistant are a bachelor's degree (or in the process of earning one) and a keen interest in the research process.

The duties of a research assistant can vary throughout the life of a research project. In the early stages, you may be required to look for grants or funding opportunities. Many research projects cannot be undertaken without funding from an overseeing body such as a government department, research council, or private company.

Research assistants can be asked to prepare supporting material and help develop a proposal to secure funding.

Research assistants may also be responsible for planning the research project, coordinating tasks, preparing surveys, scheduling interviews, and identifying statistical models and analysis techniques to use.

In the middle stages of the project, research assistants may collect, analyze and interpret data. To do this, they will use data analysis techniques and use graphs, tables, and charts to present key findings.

Finally, towards the end of the project, they may need to prepare a written discussion of the findings and help produce reports or articles. The research team may need to present the outcome of the research project at a conference to the funding agency or any other interested parties.

Research assistants commonly help prepare material such as presentation slides and posters for these conferences. Also, they help in carrying out the following;

  • Carrying out experiments and research in alignment with protocols set by senior team members.

  • Collecting and recording data.

  • Conducting analyses of datasets.

  • Preparing models to display results.

  • Reviewing academic literature.

  • Creating presentations based on key results.

  • Fact-checking, editing, and proofreading research documents for accuracy and consistency.

  • Maintaining laboratory equipment and inventory.

  • Recruiting study participants.

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