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Become A Postdoctoral Research Associate

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Working As A Postdoctoral Research Associate

  • Getting Information
  • Analyzing Data or Information
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Documenting/Recording Information
  • Mostly Sitting

  • $52,314

    Average Salary

What Does A Postdoctoral Research Associate Do

A Postdoctoral Research Associate is responsible for various research activities and the supervision of research personnel. They create various presentations and graphs to communicate the results to funders, the public, and other researchers.

How To Become A Postdoctoral Research Associate

Medical scientists typically have a Ph.D., usually in biology or a related life science. Some medical scientists get a medical degree instead of a Ph.D., but prefer doing research to practicing as a physician.

Education

Students planning careers as medical scientists typically pursue a bachelor’s degree in biology, chemistry, or a related field. Undergraduate students benefit from taking a broad range of classes, including life sciences, physical sciences, and math. Students also typically take courses that develop communication and writing skills, because they must learn to write grants effectively and publish research findings.

After students have completed their undergraduate studies, they typically enter Ph.D. programs. Dual-degree programs are available that pair a Ph.D. with a range of specialized medical degrees. A few degree programs that are commonly paired with Ph.D. studies are Medical Doctor (M.D.), Doctor of Dental Surgery (D.D.S.), Doctor of Dental Medicine (D.M.D.), and Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.). Whereas Ph.D. studies focus on research methods, such as project design and data interpretation, students in dual-degree programs learn both the clinical skills needed to be a physician and the research skills needed to be a scientist.

Graduate programs emphasize both laboratory work and original research. These programs offer prospective medical scientists the opportunity to develop their experiments and, sometimes, to supervise undergraduates. Ph.D. programs culminate in a thesis that the candidate presents before a committee of professors. Students may specialize in a particular field, such as gerontology, neurology, or cancer.

Those who go to medical school spend most of the first 2 years in labs and classrooms, taking courses such as anatomy, biochemistry, physiology, pharmacology, psychology, microbiology, pathology, medical ethics, and medical law. They also learn how to record medical histories, examine patients, and diagnose illnesses. They may be required to participate in residency programs, meeting the same requirements that physicians and surgeons have to fulfill.

Medical scientists often continue their education with postdoctoral work. Postdoctoral work provides additional and more independent lab experience, including experience in specific processes and techniques such as gene splicing, which is transferable to other research projects.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Medical scientists primarily conduct research and typically do not need licenses or certifications. However, those who administer drugs, gene therapy, or otherwise practice medicine on patients in clinical trials or a private practice need a license to practice as a physician.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Communication is critical, because medical scientists must be able to explain their conclusions. In addition, medical scientists write grant proposals, because grants often are required to fund their research.

Critical-thinking skills. Medical scientists must use their expertise to determine the best method for solving a specific research question.

Data-analysis skills. Medical scientists use statistical techniques, so that they can properly quantify and analyze health research questions.

Decisionmaking skills. Medical scientists must determine what research questions to ask, how best to investigate the questions, and what data will best answer the questions.

Observation skills. Medical scientists conduct experiments that require precise observation of samples and other health data. Any mistake could lead to inconclusive or misleading results.

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Postdoctoral Research Associate jobs

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Postdoctoral Research Associate Career Paths

Postdoctoral Research Associate
Senior Scientist Associate Director Program Director
Administrative Director
8 Yearsyrs
Research Chemist Laboratory Manager Clinical Research Coordinator
Clinical Research Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Assistant Professor Program Manager Senior Manager
Director Of Analytics
13 Yearsyrs
Assistant Professor Professor Research Associate
Laboratory Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Senior Research Associate Scientist
Lead Scientist
8 Yearsyrs
Scientist Senior Scientist
Principal Research Scientist
10 Yearsyrs
Research Scientist Senior Scientist
Principal Scientist
12 Yearsyrs
Research Associate Project Manager Senior Project Manager
Project Director
8 Yearsyrs
Instructor Project Coordinator Project Engineer
Quality Control Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Senior Scientist Research And Development Manager
Research And Development Director
12 Yearsyrs
Research Fellow Research Scientist Senior Scientist
Research And Development Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Research Scientist Project Manager Product Manager
Research And Development Technician
6 Yearsyrs
Scientist Research And Development Scientist Senior Scientist
Research Director
7 Yearsyrs
Adjunct Faculty Professor Research Associate
Research Laboratory Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Instructor Lecturer Research Associate
Research Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Research Chemist Analytical Chemist
Senior Chemist
7 Yearsyrs
Research Fellow Post Doctoral Researcher Research Associate
Senior Research Associate
6 Yearsyrs
Research Associate Research Scientist
Senior Scientist
9 Yearsyrs
Senior Research Associate Assistant Professor Senior Scientist
Study Director
7 Yearsyrs
Research And Development Scientist Research And Development Manager Research And Development Director
Vice President Of Research And Development
12 Yearsyrs
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Postdoctoral Research Associate Demographics

Gender

  • Male

    49.2%
  • Unknown

    26.5%
  • Female

    24.2%

Ethnicity

  • White

    44.5%
  • Asian

    44.4%
  • Hispanic or Latino

    6.2%
  • Unknown

    4.1%
  • Black or African American

    0.8%
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Languages Spoken

  • Chinese

    26.6%
  • Spanish

    16.8%
  • Mandarin

    9.8%
  • French

    9.3%
  • German

    5.6%
  • Russian

    3.7%
  • Korean

    3.3%
  • Xiang

    3.3%
  • Japanese

    3.3%
  • Turkish

    2.3%
  • Carrier

    2.3%
  • Italian

    2.3%
  • Cantonese

    1.9%
  • Hindi

    1.4%
  • Shan

    1.4%
  • Ukrainian

    1.4%
  • Greek

    1.4%
  • Portuguese

    1.4%
  • Arabic

    1.4%
  • Dutch

    0.9%
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Postdoctoral Research Associate Education

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Real Postdoctoral Research Associate Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Postdoctoral Research Associate The Trustees of Princeton University Princeton, NJ Jan 08, 2016 $118,000
Postdoctoral Research Associate Ut-Battelle, LLC (Oak Ridge National Laboratory) Oak Ridge, TN Jun 01, 2015 $115,020
Postdoctoral Research Associate (Materials Scientist) Battelle Energy Alliance, LLC Idaho Falls, ID Jan 09, 2016 $106,008
Postdoctoral Research Associate Los Alamos National Security, LLC Los Alamos, NM Sep 17, 2016 $104,000 -
$125,600
Postdoctoral Research Associate Texas A&M University College Station, TX Apr 07, 2016 $103,868
Postdoctoral Research Associate Northeastern University Boston, MA Oct 09, 2015 $100,343
Postdoctoral Research Associate University of Utah Salt Lake City, UT Aug 15, 2015 $100,322
Postdoctoral Research Associate (Materials Scientist) Battelle Energy Alliance, LLC Idaho Falls, ID Jan 09, 2016 $100,008
Postdoctoral Research Associate, Metabolomics Ut-Battelle, LLC (Oak Ridge National Laboratory) Oak Ridge, TN Sep 14, 2015 $98,400
Postdoctoral Research Associate Los Alamos National Security, LLC Los Alamos, NM Sep 19, 2016 $92,000
Postdoctoral Research Associate Los Alamos National Security, LLC Los Alamos, NM Jun 27, 2016 $87,988
Postdoctoral Research Associate Los Alamos National Security, LLC Los Alamos, NM Mar 07, 2015 $87,000
Postdoctoral Scholar-Research Associate The University of Southern California Marina del Rey, CA Jan 07, 2016 $86,424
Postdoctoral Research Associate Environmental Chan University of Notre Dame Du Lac Notre Dame, IN Jan 14, 2015 $52,787
Postdoctoral Research Associate Northeastern University Boston, MA Jun 10, 2016 $52,780 -
$62,780
Postdoctoral Research Associate Northeastern University Boston, MA Jan 10, 2016 $52,780 -
$62,780
Postdoctoral Research Associate Texas A&M University College Station, TX Jan 22, 2015 $52,620
Postdoctoral Research Associate University of Illinois at Chicago Chicago, IL Jan 08, 2016 $52,500
Postdoctoral Research Associate Mississippi State University MS Jun 27, 2015 $52,500
Postdoctoral Research Associate Washington University In St. Louis Saint Louis, MO Sep 01, 2015 $52,500
Postdoctoral Research Associate Iowa State University of Science and Technology NY Jan 07, 2016 $52,291
Postdoctoral Fellow Research Associate Temple University--A Commonwealth University Philadelphia, PA May 05, 2016 $46,344
Postdoctoral Research Associate Washington University In St. Louis Saint Louis, MO Jan 07, 2016 $46,344
Postdoctoral Research Associate University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Chapel Hill, NC Oct 17, 2015 $46,344
Postdoctoral Research Associate University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Chapel Hill, NC Jan 12, 2015 $46,344
Postdoctoral Research Associate Washington University In St. Louis Saint Louis, MO Oct 09, 2016 $46,344
Postdoctoral Research Associate University of Notre Dame Du Lac Notre Dame, IN Aug 16, 2015 $46,344
Postdoctoral Research Associate Iowa State University of Science and Technology Ames, IA Oct 11, 2015 $46,344

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Top Skills for A Postdoctoral Research Associate

CellCultureProteinExpressionTotalSynthesisTechniquesLaboratoryLabChemistryMolecularBiologyGeneExpressionResearchProjectsDNAAdvisorDataAnalysisRt-PcrNMRHplcScientificJournalsPhysicsElisaNIH

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Top Postdoctoral Research Associate Skills

  1. Cell Culture
  2. Protein Expression
  3. Total Synthesis
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Experience with aseptic technique and microbial cell culture at scale from 5mL tubes to 300L bioreactors.
  • Assessed protein expression changes in altered cell lines and tissues using immunoblot analysis and quantitative chemiluminescence.
  • Total synthesis of dibromophakellstatin and its analogues.
  • Examined fatigue crack growth behavior and texture evolution in Mg alloys using neutron diffraction techniques.
  • Designed and documented protocols for procedures and analyses conducted in the laboratory; standardized techniques and improved efficiency.

Top Postdoctoral Research Associate Employers

Postdoctoral Research Associate Videos

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Career Advice on becoming a Research Fellow by Linda K (Full Version)

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