Research Technician Salary
Job Description for Research Technician
Research technicians assist scientists with their experiments and research. They primarily work in a lab environment, but may work in an office while analyzing basic data. The duties of a research technician working in the field of chemistry are different from a research technician working in the field of biological research. However, research technicians will usually be required to record test results, monitor experiments, use, clean and maintain equipment, care for lab animals, maintain supplies and prepare equipment for testing. Research technicians generally work as part of a team. Depending on the size of a project, they may report to the laboratory supervisors or the principal investigators (the lead scientists on projects). A great deal of a research technician's work will require on-the-job training. As such, they are usually assigned to a mentor who will train them and provide feedback.Read More...
To become a research technician, a bachelor’s degree in a major related to the research field is usually preferred. However, many employers (especially schools) will only require a high school diploma, and may hire college students. Regardless, candidates are typically required to have one to three years of laboratory or research experience. In addition, successful research technicians show initiative, are quick learners and are good at working independently. Finally, since the work of a research technicians is often quite repetitive, candidates who show exceptional passion for the work are generally preferred by most employers.
Research Technician Tasks
- Assist scientists with research and record findings in the field or lab.
- May assist with research analysis.
- Clean, sanitize, maintain, and operate lab equipment.
Common Career Paths for Research Technician
Research Technicians may experience a large salary bump if they progress into a role such as Research Scientist. The latter position pays an average of $74K annually. The most common career progression for Research Technicians leads to becoming a Research Laboratory Technician, where pay is typically $35K. However, many Research Technicians also opt to become Biotechnology Research Associates, a position that pays $49K on average.
Research Technician Job Listings
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Popular Employer Salaries for Research Technician
Dominating the field, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, MPI Research Inc, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Dana Farber Cancer Institute, and University of Washington (UW) are top firms with a reputation for hiring a great number of Research Technicians. The biggest paychecks can be found at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center — the median salary there is $43K. Other big spenders include Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, University of Washington (UW), and University of Chicago, top-paying firms where Research Technicians see paychecks nearing $40K, $39K, or $38K.
Others at the bottom of the scale for this job include MPI Research Inc at $34K, Massachusetts General Hospital at $34K, and Dana Farber Cancer Institute, where $36K is the norm.
Popular Skills for Research Technician
Survey participants wield an impressively varied skill set on the job. Most notably, skills in Project Management, Biotechnology, Tissue Culture, and DNA are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 13 percent and 16 percent. Skills that pay less than market rate include Data Collection and Neuroscience. Those familiar with Molecular Biology also tend to know cell culture.
Pay by Experience Level for Research Technician
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Pay Difference by Location
New York is home to an above-average pay rate for Research Technicians, 15 percent higher than the national average. Research Technicians will also find cushy salaries in Seattle (+7 percent), Washington (+7 percent), San Diego (+7 percent), and Chicago (+3 percent). Cleveland is home to the smallest salaries in the field, lagging the national average by 17 percent. Below-median salaries also turn up in Baltimore and St. Louis (16 percent lower).
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Key Stats for Research Technician
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