Research Associates – Everything you need to know!

Research Associates – Everything you need to know!

After so many years of study, you have finally decided to dedicate your career to this highly progressing career! After the fierce competition in P.H.D’s, you are finally going for this prestigious but demanding job. Here is all you need to know about being a research associate. Research associate professors are post-doctoral candidates or in-training doctoral candidates working in both private and public sectors. They have a large scope of job permanence and future promotions and advancement in their chosen field. Below is written detailed information about the Research Associates and how to go about it.

Who are Research Associates?

They are candidates who taste for further deeper studies and have degrees beyond the master’s degree. They are mid–leveled trying to advance with a professorship in a university, mostly their alma mater. They work in a specific department, mostly the one in which they majored and detailed study. Faculty members tenure track or up for tenure, with ongoing research on the topics they study and major in. They are different from the research assistants. Research assistants are graduates – in training under a professional. Associates are not under training. They work in the labs professionally.

What Does a Research Associate Do?

Your position in your institute depends on the system and regulations of the place you are at; you can be at the same level as a research assistant, but then again, it all depends on the institute you are at. Research associates teach classes at different universities in the subject they are versatile in. As the name suggests, you are supposed to conduct researches – they may be at an individual level on the topic of your choice or research associated with the institute you are working in. Research associates are very educated professionals, and they have a formal position at the workplace with a budgeted track.

How to Become a Research Associate?

Becoming a research associate is a long journey to embark upon with tedious and exhausting study and work hours. Still, if you are a hard worker and are passionate about the things you are learning, it will be worth it in the end.

  • To become one, you need to have a GED or a high school diploma at the base. Although one cannot become a research associate solely on the basis of a high school grade.  A person needs further studies to start on the path.
  • Choosing the correct major is very important. You need to pursue your higher studies in the field you are interested in. The next step is to have a bachelor’s degree in the major you want to pursue your research and studies further in. It is very rare to see someone with solely a bachelor’s to become a research associate.
  • Master’s degree is another step you need to cross to reach your goal. It is the further dissection of your previous major and more topic focused in-depth studies of the major you pursued. You can become a research associate with a master’s degree but you need to have exceptional grades and experience for it. Or if you are on the path to enter for a P.H.D, you can be considered.
  • A P.H.D diploma guarantees that you are eligible to become a research associate. With this said you need to have done internships or have appropriate work experiences under the tutelage of professionals and experienced candidates. In fact, their job requires them to have prior work experience and knowledge to continue. Also, your P.H.D should be in the relevant field.
  • Many of the candidates for this job apply for the jobs in their own alma mater, the place they studied in. But many of them apply at different institutes, workplaces – both private and public. 
  • This career required a lot of hard work and years of studies. It is very necessary for you to have the grit and determination to succeed and not stop in between if you want to make it till the end because the place is swamped with the competition.

What are the job aspects?

Research associates are respected academics and are well paid too. Their job expects them to be well-read and well-informed. They are expected to work on different collaborative and individual research projects for their institute in their chosen field of area. Then, as the research is funded by the place they work at, the institute expects written paperwork, hypothesis, and aims of the research conducted. After the research comes towards an end, they need you to write and present your detailed report and expect a research paper with a conclusion to be published.

Being a researcher and a professor is not an easy task. You have to manage a lot of stuff. The place and classes you teach expects and asks you to be ready with the teaching strategy, monthly course planning, and proper execution. They want you to match the excellence of their teaching staff and match their pace with the academia. Your job requires you to grade the papers without any bias and favoritism. You need to manage the projects properly and timely, timetabling your meeting schedule, research hours, and teaching part. You are required to keep up with the rule and regulations of the school faculty and discipline the students with appropriate punishments if any rule is violated.

How Much Money Is This Job Giving?

So, after all the hard work, resources, money, and time you put in your education from high school to P.H.D. You expect your efforts to pay off, in fact, a good beneficial pay. And let me tell you that you are right about a good payoff. An early beginning in this career of associate professorship gives you an approximation of $90,000 as a starting salary. A very beneficial pay with an increase as the years go by and your experience grows. According to the statistics and pay scale calculators, the job scope and salary percentage in the future have grown in the field ahead. This job has high competition. On the lower end of this scale, an average of $70000 is the median, and a very prestigious institutional position can fetch you up to $130,000 too!


So, coming towards this very interesting topic, I will highlight the important part of the article right now. Research associate professors are in high demand today. They are well-educated academics holding a doctorate or on their way to get a doctorate. After their degree, it is most common for them to join their alma mater and start their profession. This job is swamped with the competition. It demands and expects you to be on your A-game all the time. You are expected to conduct researches – individual and grouped for the benefit of the institute and self–growth. This is not a declining career and has a growth rate of 3 to 7 percent. Your starting average pay scale is $90,000. A more prestigious position fetches you around $130,000, and a lower-end salary for this job is $70,000.

Research Associates – Everything you need to know!

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