Want to be a Scientist

By Lathan Rubant


  • Design and conduct studies that investigate both human diseases and methods to prevent and treat them
  • Prepare and analyze medical samples and data to investigate causes and treatment of toxicity, pathogens, or chronic diseases
  • Create and test medical devices

Skill Required

  • 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.
  • 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.


You need a...

  • Bachelor’s degree in biology,
  • Chemistry,
  • And other requirements in related fields.

Median Wages

  • Pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing $108,200
  • Research and development in the physical, engineering, and life sciences $96,290
  • Medical and diagnostic laboratories $79,020
  • Hospitals; state, local, and private $76,670
  • Colleges, universities, and professional schools; state, local, and private $58,370

Job Openings

Employment of chemists and materials scientists is projected to grow 3 percent from 2014 to 2024, slower than the average for all occupations.
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