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Research Specialist

Who is a Research Specialist?

A research specialist is an individual or a person who is studying, as well as, skilled and expert knowledge of one or multiple physical and natural sciences.

What does a Research Specialist do?

A research specialist conducts and analyzes different types of experiments to develop or innovate new products such as consumer durable products or life-saving drugs or increases the scope of the scientific know-how of different existing phenomena or processes.

How to become a Research Specialist in India?

In India, to become a research specialist, one has to first complete a bachelor’s degree wherein degrees around a Mathematics/Statistical background give an advantage. This needs to be followed by a postgraduate degree in Statistical or Research field eg. Market Research or Operations Research. Thereafter, they should pursue and complete a doctoral degree.

You would create a proposal and send it to universities describing what research you are planning to take and pursue a PhD in the same. Once the university accepts your proposal, they pay a stipend for your research. Some national and international universities also cover benefits above and beyond such as food, living, travel and living costs.

Alternatively, you can pursue Research Software courses online or offline through certifications and get a research job in the corporate field. For starters, you may want to check out SPSS and R. You can pursue a career in the corporate ladder as a Research Analyst. Look at job portals for the types of software that you must know in order to get a job at your dream workplace and learn how to use them.

What are the skills required?

Some other skills required for becoming a research specialist are as follows:

  • The attention span for a long time, dedication and sincerity to work, as well as, readiness to work for long hours

  • A research specialist should be able to work independently, as well as, with guidance from time to time

  • They should have proper computing skills, presentation skills, skills for working in a team, and time management skills.

Top colleges offering courses to become Research Specialist

Pursuing the right kind of courses is the most important step to becoming a research specialist. You have to first opt for a specialization based on the field in which you want to do your research and complete either a Master of Science or Tech/equivalent to a master's degree in an appropriate field.

Thereafter, you have to apply for a PhD or doctoral level program in your area of specialization. India has different private and government colleges that provide quality education in several fields.

Some colleges/institutes for becoming a research specialist are as follows:

  • Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi

  • Indian Institute of Science (IISc)

  • National Institute of Technology (NIT)

  • Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISER)

  • Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST)

  • Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai

  • Department of Operations Research, University of Delhi

What is the career scope for Research Specialists?

Research specialists are primarily needed in different fields such as social science, agriculture, engineering, physical science, space research, and technology among others.

Research specialists can find job opportunities in abundance in private and government organizations. If you have a research degree, it is also possible to get jobs abroad. Research specialists can work in different fields.

Check out some of the job profiles of Research specialists in India:

  • Astronomers

  • Archaeologists

  • Earth scientists

  • Biologists

  • Military scientists

  • Food Scientists

  • Communication scientists

  • Economists

  • Neuroscientists

  • Criminologists

  • Agronomists

  • Geologists

  • Computer scientists

  • Ecologists

How much does a Research Specialist make?

According to Glassdoor, the salary of a research specialist in India is Rs 10,47,503/yr.
However, the pay package given to research specialists or scientists can also depend upon different terms like working area, academic qualification, and the type of organization, company, and work experience.

What are the Books and study material available?

There are different books and study materials available for research specialists in the market. Check out some of these popular books below:

  • A Brief History of Time- by Stephen Hawking

  • Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica (Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy)- by Isaac Newton

  • Elements: A Visual Exploration- by Theodore Gray

  • The Elegant Universe- by Brian Greene

  • The Origin of Species- by Charles Darwin

  • The Greatest Show on Earth- by Richard Dawkins

  • The Universe in a Nutshell- by  Stephen Hawking

  • The Pleasure of Finding Things Out- by Richard P. Feynman

  • The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Thomas Kuhn

Major recruiters

You will find several organizations that recruit research specialists or scientists in India. Some top recruiters are as follows:

  • Indian Association for Cultivation of Science (IACS)

  • Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO)

  • Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC)

  • Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM)

  • Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR)

  • Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES)

  • Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR)

  • Gartner

  • Nielsen

Interesting facts

In 1930, Dr CV Raman was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics for his revolutionary work on the principle of scattering of light.