Medical research assistants provide support to medical professionals. They assist in conducting experiments or gathering and analyzing information and data. They are employed by medical research centers and related organizations to help in different research activities. These tasks vary depending on the type of research carried out. The experiments and research they carry out are according to the protocols of the primary researchers. A medical research assistant collects, records, and analyzes experimental data. They also maintain laboratory equipment and keep inventory.

A medical research assistant must possess analytical, technical, observational, and time-management skills. They must also have a bachelor's degree in life sciences or a related subject to qualify for the job. Apart from this, they must have adequate knowledge of proper clinical procedures and clinical trials. They must also have extensive knowledge about the research subject matter and the technology used in studies.

What Does a Medical Research Assistant Do

There are certain skills that many medical 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 analytical skills, detail oriented and interpersonal skills.

Learn more about what a Medical Research Assistant does

How To Become a Medical Research Assistant

If you're interested in becoming a medical research assistant, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 35.4% of medical research assistants have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 7.1% of medical research assistants have master's degrees. Even though some medical research assistants have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Learn More About How To Become a Medical Research Assistant

Medical Research Assistant Career Paths

Average Salary for a Medical Research Assistant

Medical Research Assistants in America make an average salary of $40,303 per year or $19 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $64,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $25,000 per year.
Average Medical Research Assistant Salary
$40,303 Yearly
$19.38 hourly

What Am I Worth?


Roles and Types of Medical Research Assistant

There are several types of medical research assistant, including:

Medical Assisting Extern


So you've decided that you want to pursue medical assisting as a profession. There's an easy way to find out if that's the career for you. The simple answer is to become a medical assisting extern.

Whether you're trying to decide if that's truly what you want to become or if you're just working toward an education for that career, you should highly consider becoming a medical assisting extern. It's a great way to gain experience, which looks great on a resume. Plus, it won't take up a lot of your time.

As a medical assisting extern, you'll gain experience providing patient care, performing treatments and educating patients on procedures. Typically, an extern is much shorter than an internship so if you end up not enjoying yourself, then you can move on without wasting six months.

  • Average Salary: $35,737
  • Degree: Bachelor's Degree

Medical Scribe


A Medical Scribe acts as support for the doctor, a kind of a personal assistant, filling out paperwork, taking notes during patient interviews, monitoring some test results, and generally getting the non-clinical tasks and paperwork out of the way of the physician they work with. The role of such a Scribe is important because it allows the doctor to focus on treating and working with patients.

An ideal candidate for this position should have prior experience and knowledge of medical paperwork and a passion for medicine. A Scribe need not have any sort of college degree or be attending a university of any sorts to begin their career, but many employers prefer hiring people who do so.

A Scribe generally works twice a week, alongside their doctor, who works either eight, ten or 12-hour shifts.

  • Average Salary: $30,045
  • Degree: Bachelor's Degree

States With The Most Medical Research Assistant Jobs

Mouse over a state to see the number of active medical research assistant jobs in each state. The darker areas on the map show where medical research assistants earn the highest salaries across all 50 states.

Average Salary: Job Openings:

Number Of Medical Research Assistant Jobs By State

RankStateNumber of JobsAverage Salary
2New York3,834$59,676
10North Carolina1,860$33,342
12New Jersey1,632$53,777
27South Carolina775$31,114
35New Hampshire432$50,525
38West Virginia396$34,408
41New Mexico296$41,353
44Rhode Island231$56,263
46South Dakota161$32,298
49North Dakota116$36,104

Medical Research Assistant Education

Medical Research Assistant Majors

12.9 %
10.0 %

Medical Research Assistant Degrees


35.4 %


17.5 %


17.3 %

Top Skills For a Medical 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, 19.9% of medical research assistants listed patients on their resume, but soft skills such as analytical skills and detail oriented are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Medical Research Assistant Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Medical Research Assistant templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Medical 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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Medical Research Assistant diversity

Medical Research Assistant Gender Distribution


After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among medical research assistants, 81.0% of them are women, while 19.0% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among medical research assistants is White, which makes up 50.4% of all medical research assistants.

  • The most common foreign language among medical research assistants is Spanish at 57.9%.

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Best States For a Medical Research Assistant

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a medical research assistant. The best states for people in this position are Massachusetts, New York, Connecticut, and Maryland. Medical research assistants make the most in Massachusetts with an average salary of $69,404. Whereas in New York and Connecticut, they would average $59,676 and $57,700, respectively. While medical research assistants would only make an average of $57,048 in Maryland, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. New York

Total Medical Research Assistant Jobs: 3,834
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:

2. Connecticut

Total Medical Research Assistant Jobs: 820
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:

3. Maryland

Total Medical Research Assistant Jobs: 1,574
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:
Full List Of Best States For Medical Research Assistants

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Top Medical Research Assistant Employers

Most Common Employers For Medical Research Assistant

RankCompanyAverage SalaryHourly RateJob Openings
1PRA Group Careers$72,130$34.687
2National Institutes of Health$61,516$29.574
3Thomas Jefferson University$57,257$27.534
4Henry M. Jackson Foundation$55,477$26.674
5The George Washington University$41,255$19.834
6Oak Street Medical$40,126$19.295
7Novum Pharmaceutical Research Services$39,327$18.918
8Primary Care Partners$39,289$18.893
10Maine Eye Center$38,046$18.294