Medical Scientists

Annual Earnings Percentiles

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  • Analytical: 91
  • Creative: 87
  • Social: 73
  • Supported: 68
  • Purpose: 68

What Medical Scientists Do

Medical scientists conduct research aimed at improving overall human health. They often use clinical trials and other investigative methods to reach their findings.

Work Environment

Medical scientists work in offices and laboratories. Most work full time.

How to Become a Medical Scientist

Medical scientists typically have a Ph.D., usually in biology or a related life science. Some medical scientists get a medical degree instead of a Ph.D., but prefer doing research to practicing as a physician.

College Majors

Showing data from the American Community Survey for the following US Census occupation categories:

  • Medical scientists, and life scientists, all other

Bachelor's degree majors are shown.

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    Job Outlook

    Employment of medical scientists is projected to grow 8 percent from 2014 to 2024, about as fast as the average for all occupations. Medical scientists will continue to be needed because they contribute to the development of treatments and medicines that improve human health.

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    Job Trends for Medical Scientists

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    This occupation supported 103,100 jobs in 2012 and 107,900 jobs in 2014, reflecting an increase of 4.7%. In 2012, this occupation was projected to increase by 13.3% in 2022 to 116,800 jobs. As of 2014, to keep pace with prediction, the expected number of jobs was 105,800, compared with an observed value of 107,900, 2.0% higher than expected. This indicates current employment trends are about on track with the 2012 trend within this occupation. In 2014, this occupation was projected to increase by 8.6% in 2024 to 116,800 jobs. Linear extrapolation of the 2012 projection for 2022 results in an expected number of 119,500 jobs for 2024, 2.3% higher than the 2014 projection for 2024. This indicates expectations for future employment trends are worse than the 2012 trend within this occupation.