Check out the various positions you could hold working in Research & Development. Whether you’re graduating from school, changing careers or looking for your next promotion, we’ll help you learn more about bioscience jobs–and build a great career.
If you see a Research & Development job title that looks interesting, click it to learn more about the job, required education, and salary and work environment.
Annual salary range: $30,000 – 200,000+
Education range: high school diploma to PhD
Factoid: Curious how bioscience responds to new technology? Heard of 3D printing? Researchers are exploring how 3D printing can create less expensive, personalized body parts—from ears to bone grafts. Organs and tissues could be next!
Entry Level Jobs
Research Assistant / Associate
Performs laboratory experiments and tests in accordance with Good Laboratory Practice; works under the supervision of the Research Associate; makes detailed observations, analyzes data and interprets results. An Associate makes detailed observations, analyzes data, interprets results; prepares technical reports, summaries, protocols and quantitative analyses; maintains familiarity with current scientific literature; investigates and creates new methods and technologies for project advancement; may act as principle investigator, contributes to journals or participates in conferences.
AS degree required and no experience. Bachelor’s degree may be required in a scientific field. You can progress in this position by continuing education through the Masters level.
$41,500-126,400; Average: $78,985
This job is found in the Diagnostic, Medical Device and Pharmaceutical industry.
Mid Level Jobs
Design and develop new pharmaceutical instruments. Partners with clients, marketing & sales, and surgeon groups to conceptualize and commercialize new Intellectual Property. Function as a project leader to oversee entire product development initiatives through into manufacturing while partnering with quality, manufacturing engineering, and regulatory.
BS degree (engineering or biomedical) with 5-7 years experience. Advanced degree (MS or PhD) preferred with experience in R&D / Product Development
$52,000-108,000; Average: $78,954
This job is found in the Pharmaceutical industry
Research and Development Engineer
Originates, designs, develops, tests, and documents all specifications of the highest complexity for new products or production equipment requirements. Creates efficient and effective designs that reflect the highest technical standards; creates new approaches and conceptualize products, processes, assemblies, or fixtures with only general requirements by engineers. Assembles and tests prototypes, products, or productions equipment to validate performance of designs. Contribute to the full development cycle, including feasibility, concept, design and fabrication.
4 year degree (engineering or biomedical). Advanced degree preferred/5+ years in R&D / Product Development
$54,000 – $110,000 ;Average: $72,000
This job is found in the Medical Device industry.
Advanced Level Jobs
Principal Scientist / Principal Engineer
Lead a group of scientists tasked with delivering a portfolio of therapeutic and diagnostic research. Lead a group of scientists responsible for developing and performing assays. Identification and implementation of new technologies. Responsible for developing and implementing new technologies and products that support business goals; recommends termination of candidates in a way that supports business goals; solves and/or prevents broad and complex problems. Directs scientific research and development to align with corporate strategies; maintains knowledge of state-of-the-art scientific developments.
Requires MS and 10-15 years experience or PhD
$42,250-148,000; Average: $84,760
This job is found in the Diagnostic and Pharmaceutical industry.
Coordinates all project development activities for a given study with input from the Director. Timeline management to specification development, project validation and through to research completion.
MS Degree in scientific field with 10-15 years experience or PhD with 8-9 years experience
$81,000 – 100,000
This job is found in the Medical Device industry.
Lindsey – Case Western Reserve University Lab Technician
“Cleveland’s many research labs are always looking for good people.”
When Lindsey first started college she didn’t exactly know where she was going to end up – in terms of both her degree and career path. She had been working in either retail or food service and was getting tired of the long, late hours, low pay and having no interest in what she was doing every day. She started looking into science classes courses at Lakeland Community College (LCC) because she’d always been interested in science. Before she knew it she had taken nearly half of the required courses for the BioScience program.
She started investigating the BioScience job market in Cleveland. Having little prior knowledge of what jobs existed in this slice of science she was pleasantly surprised by all the research labs in the area that were looking for new hires with the educational background that the BioScience program through LCC provided. After speaking with her academic advisor and Dr. Dieck, she was convinced that the opportunities offered through the program, including small class sizes, internships and connections to the job market after graduation, were exactly what she was looking for.
During her internship at the Cleveland Clinic Lindsey learned the ins and outs of being a lab research assistant. Working with a small team she found herself learning the ropes quickly and becoming an integral contributor to all aspects of the research and analysis process at the lab. She was offered a summer position at Cleveland Clinic and although her particular research project didn’t receive funding to continue she wasn’t discouraged and looked for similar work available in labs at Case Western Reserve. Interviewing with a robust group of 50 applicants, Lindsey was thrilled to hear that she was the one chosen for a research assistant position at a lab that was starting from the ground up. She was able to see evolve from bare walls to a scientific research hub. “Every morning was like Christmas, but with lab equipment. It was very exciting to be a part of the work from square one.”
Lindsey was even given the great privilege of moving to a new lab in Kansas City with her boss who took a new job in Missouri. While Lindsey was flattered by the offer and the validation of her contributions to the lab, she declined to stay in the Cleveland area and continue working with Case Western to take advantage of their tuition program for University staff. She’s now taking classes to get her Bachelors in Bio Chemistry at Case and wants to continue her work at the lab studying Crohn’s disease.
Lindsey is looking forward to her future in the BioScience industry. Her research has made her look at many aspects of life differently. She can directly see the link between nutrition and its affect on your body – she says that she’s a better person physically and mentally because of her knowledge and work in the lab. One day she could see herself contributing to the development of new products that will help people fight disease.