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The Average Salary of Medical School Professors

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Medical school professors are responsible for educating future health care providers in the United States. They not only instruct students in the classroom and clinical environment, but also conduct research, write papers and books, create courses and curricula and work with other faculty to maintain the highest quality in education. Medical school professors are highly educated and credentialed and have a multitude of options and specializations within their field. The average salary of medical school professors can be determined through a variety of factors.

Average Salary

The average salary of a medical school and health specialties teacher is $103,340 a year, based on a 2009 salary report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Professors making wages in the bottom 10th percentile reported annual pay of less than $40,670 while those in the top 10th percentile reported making more than $166,400 a year. The report is based on an estimated 133,070 post-secondary health specialty teachers.

Medical School Location

Wages can vary greatly between different areas of the country, due to factors like cost of living or economic environment of the location. For example, medical school professors in Nebraska only make an average of $85,920 a year, well below the national average. Missouri is also slightly below the national figure at $102,310 annually. However, multiple states reported exceptional wages. Medical school professors in Arizona, New York, Michigan and Iowa all make wages on average ranging between $125,350 and $129,820 a year. According to the 2009 BLS report, Massachusetts is the highest-paying state in the country for medical professors. It is known as a center for health care in the United States, and as such, it employs around 4,440 medical school teachers at an annual mean wage of $138,940.

Type of Educational Institution

The vast majority of medical school professors work in colleges, universities and professional schools and make $112,070 a year on average, according to 2009 BLS data. There are over 16,000 that are employed by junior colleges, but these professors are only paid $64,400 a year on average. The highest-paying positions for medical professors are found in scientific research and development companies. There were only a reported 510 positions in 2009, but the annual mean wage is $154,370.

Specific Medical Schools conducted a study of 1,022 positions for medical school professors over the past several years and found that the top-paying positions are at the University of Washington, a job that compensated its medical professors $475,000 a year in 2007. At Yale University in 2010, there was a reported medical professor position that paid $290,000 in wages. At Harvard University in the same year, a medical professor was paid $260,000 a year. At a less prestigious and less costly school, wages typically are lower, such as at Arizona State University, where a medical school professor was paid $165,000 in 2005.


Kara Page has been a freelance writer and editor since 2007. She maintains several blogs on travel, music, food and more. She is also a contributing writer for Suite101 and has articles published on eHow and Answerbag. Page holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from the University of North Texas.

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