Average Principal Scientist Salary
$125,000 yearly
$44.64 hourly
Updated July 8, 2021
$97,000
10 %
$125,000
Median
$160,000
90 %
Did you know that the average principal scientist makes $125,059 per year? That's valued at $60.12 per hour! The range surrounding that average can vary between $97,000 and $160,000, meaning principal scientists have the opportunity to earn more once they move past entry-level roles. Most principal scientists find a job with pharmaceutical and health care companies, while others work for health care, pharmaceutical, and manufacturing companies to make more money. Those aren't the only places you can earn a higher paycheck. Nevada, Alaska and Maine are the top states in the U.S. to pay principal scientists the highest salaries.

Average Principal Scientist Salary By State

The darker areas on the map show where principal scientists earn the highest salaries across all 50 states.

Average Salary

Principal Scientist average salary by State

StateascdescAvg. salaryascdescHourly rateascdesc
Alabama
Alabama
$81,085
$81,085
$38.98
$38.98
Alaska
Alaska
$142,468
$142,468
$68.49
$68.49
Arizona
Arizona
$129,058
$129,058
$62.05
$62.05
Arkansas
Arkansas
$101,450
$101,450
$48.77
$48.77
California
California
$136,652
$136,652
$65.70
$65.70
Colorado
Colorado
$67,855
$67,855
$32.62
$32.62
Connecticut
Connecticut
$135,882
$135,882
$65.33
$65.33
Delaware
Delaware
$123,450
$123,450
$59.35
$59.35
District of Columbia
District of Columbia
$106,638
$106,638
$51.27
$51.27
Florida
Florida
$108,197
$108,197
$52.02
$52.02
Georgia
Georgia
$66,564
$66,564
$32.00
$32.00
Hawaii
Hawaii
$90,526
$90,526
$43.52
$43.52
Idaho
Idaho
$102,549
$102,549
$49.30
$49.30
Illinois
Illinois
$80,091
$80,091
$38.51
$38.51
Indiana
Indiana
$80,541
$80,541
$38.72
$38.72
Iowa
Iowa
$87,685
$87,685
$42.16
$42.16
Kansas
Kansas
$82,137
$82,137
$39.49
$39.49
Kentucky
Kentucky
$98,297
$98,297
$47.26
$47.26
Louisiana
Louisiana
$69,722
$69,722
$33.52
$33.52
Maine
Maine
$140,553
$140,553
$67.57
$67.57
Maryland
Maryland
$108,304
$108,304
$52.07
$52.07
Massachusetts
Massachusetts
$111,671
$111,671
$53.69
$53.69
Michigan
Michigan
$75,227
$75,227
$36.17
$36.17
Minnesota
Minnesota
$110,835
$110,835
$53.29
$53.29
Mississippi
Mississippi
$77,074
$77,074
$37.05
$37.05
Missouri
Missouri
$65,302
$65,302
$31.40
$31.40
Montana
Montana
$106,621
$106,621
$51.26
$51.26
Nebraska
Nebraska
$73,389
$73,389
$35.28
$35.28
Nevada
Nevada
$146,958
$146,958
$70.65
$70.65
New Hampshire
New Hampshire
$106,757
$106,757
$51.33
$51.33
New Jersey
New Jersey
$137,384
$137,384
$66.05
$66.05
New Mexico
New Mexico
$106,548
$106,548
$51.23
$51.23
New York
New York
$111,428
$111,428
$53.57
$53.57
North Carolina
North Carolina
$96,626
$96,626
$46.45
$46.45
North Dakota
North Dakota
$82,715
$82,715
$39.77
$39.77
Ohio
Ohio
$86,897
$86,897
$41.78
$41.78
Oklahoma
Oklahoma
$103,605
$103,605
$49.81
$49.81
Oregon
Oregon
$117,604
$117,604
$56.54
$56.54
Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
$113,435
$113,435
$54.54
$54.54
Rhode Island
Rhode Island
$127,522
$127,522
$61.31
$61.31
South Carolina
South Carolina
$73,852
$73,852
$35.51
$35.51
South Dakota
South Dakota
$83,297
$83,297
$40.05
$40.05
Tennessee
Tennessee
$93,594
$93,594
$45.00
$45.00
Texas
Texas
$87,588
$87,588
$42.11
$42.11
Utah
Utah
$71,444
$71,444
$34.35
$34.35
Vermont
Vermont
$106,587
$106,587
$51.24
$51.24
Virginia
Virginia
$109,935
$109,935
$52.85
$52.85
Washington
Washington
$133,583
$133,583
$64.22
$64.22
West Virginia
West Virginia
$69,771
$69,771
$33.54
$33.54
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
$83,078
$83,078
$39.94
$39.94
Wyoming
Wyoming
$95,463
$95,463
$45.90
$45.90

Highest Paying Cities For Principal Scientist

0 selections
CityascdescAvg. salaryascdescHourly rateascdesc
San Francisco, CA
San Francisco, CA
$146,013
$146,013
$70.20
$70.20
Nutley, NJ
Nutley, NJ
$139,586
$139,586
$67.11
$67.11
Seattle, WA
Seattle, WA
$136,614
$136,614
$65.68
$65.68
Ridgefield, CT
Ridgefield, CT
$136,108
$136,108
$65.44
$65.44
Bethlehem, PA
Bethlehem, PA
$116,014
$116,014
$55.78
$55.78
Cambridge, MA
Cambridge, MA
$111,748
$111,748
$53.73
$53.73

The largest raises come from changing jobs.

See what's out there.

Average Principal Scientist Salary Over Time

Compare salaries for individual cities or states with the national average.

Location

    Average JOB Salary by Field

    Research Fellow

    Avg. salary: $49,120

    A research fellow is an academic researcher who conducts research and analysis of comprehensive literature, data, and results and provides literature reviews. He supervises research assistants and recruits study participants to interview them for a particular study. To become a research fellow, a candidate should have a doctorate in a relevant discipline and publish peer-reviewed papers. Also, a research fellow can be an independent investigator or be supervised by a principal investigator.
    31,581 Research Fellow Jobs
    Chemist

    Avg. salary: $60,376

    Chemists are generally responsible for observing and investigating chemical substances to create new and safe compounds essential for practical applications. They are often grouped depending on a particular area of specialization to focus and understand the complexities of the matter. A chemist usually takes time performing research and conducting experiments to test and further improve the quality and usage of a specific chemical substance. Chemists are expected to write on their observations and findings to establish scientific results.
    11,691 Chemist Jobs
    Laboratory Analyst

    Avg. salary: $47,557

    A Laboratory Analyst helps conduct experiments, run laboratory tests, and analyze results. They compile and record data for the documentation needed for testing and report preparation.
    27,818 Laboratory Analyst Jobs
    Quality Control Analyst

    Avg. salary: $62,045

    Quality assurance representatives are professionals who are responsible for ensuring the quality of units produced or manufactured is following the standards set by the industry. These representatives supervise the entire production process to identify erroneous methods or tools being used by workers and observing produced for visible defects. They are required to perform various tests to check for the durability of the product and other desirable characteristics. Quality assurance representatives must also collaborate with the manufacturing engineer to implement quality control programs and preparing training manuals and quality guidelines.
    41,097 Quality Control Analyst Jobs
    Research And Development Chemist

    Avg. salary: $71,304

    A research and development chemist primarily works at laboratories to conduct extensive tests and experiments aiming to develop new products and technologies. Although the extent of their duties may vary, it typically revolves around conducting research and studies, observing chemical reactions, maintaining records and databases, collaborating with fellow experts, and identifying the strengths and weaknesses of existing components or mixtures. They can find employment in different areas, such as manufacturing companies, private laboratories, government agencies, and even education.
    54,225 Research And Development Chemist Jobs
    Quality Control Chemist

    Avg. salary: $54,416

    A Quality Control Chemist uses chemistry lab skills to test and measure materials, usually in a manufacturing or pharmaceutical field. They analyze samples using scientific equipment, prepare study protocols, collect data, and identify and investigate abnormal test results.
    41,551 Quality Control Chemist Jobs

    Principal Scientist Salaries By Years Of Experience

    The salary for a principal scientist can vary depending on the years of experience that a person has, from entry level to senior level. Data on how experience level affects total compensation is provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) as part of their National Compensation Survey, which is based on factors such as knowledge, complexity, contacts, and environment.

    Which Companies Pay Principal Scientists The Most?

    If you want to get paid the most as a principal scientist, being employed by a company such as Adobe or Microsoft would be a smart choice, as they are the highest paying companies in this field. Additionally, companies like AT&T; and Broadcom also report highly competitive salaries for principal scientists.
    Company
    Company
    Avg. Salary
    Range
    $133k
    $177k
    $133k
    $177k
    $133k
    $177k
    $133k
    $177k

    Recently Added Principal Scientist Salaries

    Location
    CompanyascdescJobascdescLocationascdescDate AddedascdescSalaryascdesc
    Principal Veterinary Scientist
    Principal Veterinary Scientist
    Lawrenceville, NJ
    Lawrenceville, NJ
    06/30/2021
    06/30/2021
    $208,700
    $208,700
    06/30/2021
    Principal Scientist-Mlcc (Multi-Layer Ceramic Capacitors)
    Principal Scientist-Mlcc (Multi-Layer Ceramic Capacitors)
    Cazenovia, NY
    Cazenovia, NY
    06/16/2021
    06/16/2021
    $165,000
    $165,000
    06/16/2021
    Principal Scientist, Computational Chemistry
    Principal Scientist, Computational Chemistry
    Boulder, CO
    Boulder, CO
    06/15/2021
    06/15/2021
    $90,500
    $90,500
    06/15/2021
    Principal Scientist, Computational Chemistry
    Principal Scientist, Computational Chemistry
    Boulder, CO
    Boulder, CO
    05/20/2021
    05/20/2021
    $90,500
    $90,500
    05/20/2021
    Principal Scientist, Computational Chemistry
    Principal Scientist, Computational Chemistry
    Boulder, CO
    Boulder, CO
    05/19/2021
    05/19/2021
    $90,500
    $90,500
    05/19/2021
    Maryland Government Jobs
    Maryland Government Jobs
    Public Health Laboratory Principal Scientist Developmental
    Public Health Laboratory Principal Scientist Developmental
    Public Health Laboratory Principal Scientist Developmental
    Baltimore, MD
    Baltimore, MD
    05/18/2021
    05/18/2021
    $65,857
    $65,857
    05/18/2021
    Principal Scientist II (INV III)
    Principal Scientist II (INV III)
    Cambridge, MA
    Cambridge, MA
    03/24/2021
    03/24/2021
    $133,203
    $133,203
    03/24/2021
    Principal Scientist
    Principal Scientist
    Groton, CT
    Groton, CT
    03/22/2021
    03/22/2021
    $91,666
    $91,666
    03/22/2021
    Principal Scientist, Cryo
    Principal Scientist, Cryo
    Boulder, CO
    Boulder, CO
    03/19/2021
    03/19/2021
    $90,500
    $90,500
    03/19/2021
    Principal Scientist, Upstream Process Development
    Principal Scientist, Upstream Process Development
    Andover, MA
    Andover, MA
    03/18/2021
    03/18/2021
    $90,500
    $90,500
    03/18/2021

    Average Principal Scientist Salary by Demographic

    Principal Scientist Gender Pay Gap

    male-income
    Male Income
    $116,566
    female-income
    Female Income
    $115,099
    Median Principal Scientist Income by Race
    Black or african american principal scientists have the highest average salary compared to other ethnicities. Hispanic or latino principal scientists have the lowest average salary at $113,541.
    $118,000
    $117,000
    $116,000
    $115,000
    $114,000
    $113,000
    White
    Black or African American
    Asian
    Unknown
    Hispanic or Latino
    Ethnicityascdesc
    Salaryascdesc
    White$115,365
    Black or African American$117,377
    Asian$115,931
    Unknown$116,948
    Hispanic or Latino$113,541
    Average Principal Scientist Salary by Education Level
    Principal scientists with a Doctorate degree earn more than those without, at $118,109 annually. With a Masters degree, principal scientists earn a median annual income of $115,099 compared to $108,781 for principal scientists with an Bachelors degree.
    $119,000
    $117,000
    $115,000
    $113,000
    $111,000
    $109,000
    $107,000
    Bachelor's Degree
    Master's Degree
    Doctorate Degree
    Educationascdesc
    Salaryascdesc
    Bachelor's Degree$108,781
    Master's Degree$115,099
    Doctorate Degree$118,109