Research assistants work in university, public, and private laboratories. They assist research professionals in setting up and executing research programs and projects, and they focus on developing their skills and proficiencies for more advanced work later in their careers. Some research assistants begin this work while still in undergraduate programs at university, while others continue after graduation and during post-graduate study.
When preparing a research assistant resume, it's important to highlight your skills both in and out of the lab as well as your university coursework. You might not have much work experience to include, so focus on personal and professional skills as well as your educational background. However, if you have work experience in the lab, provide detailed and results-driven data about your background.
For research assistants with no work history, consider listing volunteer positions or part-time work. Even if it doesn't relate to the position for which you are applying, it will establish your work ethic and convince potential employers that you can handle the rigorous demands placed on a research assistant. Even work in retail can be beneficial on a research assistant resume because it showcases your ability to follow directions and remain accountable.
Research assistants often include more personal details on their resumes than do other professionals. For instance, you might provide a professional summary that illustrates your career goals and plans as well as your areas of scientific interest. If you have a reason behind your desire to pursue a certain field of scientific inquiry, potential employers might be interested to know about it.
In your skills section, focus on abilities and competencies that will apply to laboratory situations. Your ability to stay organized, to follow directions, and to maintain industry standards are all applicable to this work. Highlight any experience you might have in preparing lab equipment, acquiring laboratory supplies, or creating reports that summarize research results.
You can also mention any non-work-related experience that might benefit you in the lab or show your dedication to the industry. For instance, if you are interested in cancer research and you participate in a marathon every year that benefits cancer research, consider including it in your resume. Potential employers value dedication and passion.
Keep your resume to one page, if possible, and list your educational achievements, such as top grades or scholarships. These details will serve to set you apart from other candidates, which makes you more likely to gain a job.
Common Mistakes for Research Assistant Resumes
Over-writing is a common mistake among research professionals. An employer might receive hundreds of applications for a single position, so it's essential to keep your research assistant resume as concise and articulate as possible. Don't feel tempted to include every detail of your professional and educational background. Instead, stick to the highlights and the most impressive details.
Additionally, avoid common resume blunders that mark you as an amateur. For instance, it's an accepted standard to list your work history and educational accomplishments in reverse chronological order. Make sure to provide all of your contact information details, including your email address, as well as your major at university.
Don't neglect to mention educational accolades that mark you as a superior student. If you have made the Dean's List every year since you entered university, for instance, that detail belongs in your resume. You'll also want to mention any scholarships or fellowships that might distinguish you from your peers.
Research Assistant Resume Sample
2012 - Present
- Prepare and manage detailed databases
- Verify database accuracy
- Prepare reports on research methodology and conclusions
2008 - 2012
- Prepared and maintained laboratory equipment prior to and after work
- Assisted with preparation for and conducting of experiments
- Developed and implemented quality control procedures for research methodology
2004 - 2008
- Performed set-up and preparation procedures as required by professor
- Provided assistance with lab and field studies
- Created and submitted research reports
- Familiarity with all laboratory equipment and materials
- Proficient with Zotero software
- Excellent time-management and organizational skills
- Knowledge of laboratory standards and best practices
- Experience with field research integrity
2004 - 2008
University of Alberta
B.S. Conservation Biology
Research Assistant Positions to Consider
Are you ready to apply for a research assistant job? Check out the following links to start searching for exciting job positions in your area.
460 Duck Creek Road
San Francisco, CA 94108
Job Objective Seeking an Academic Writer position utilizing my skills and knowledge.
Highlights of Qualifications:
- Extensive experience of writing technical and non-technical academic papers and articles for educational institutions
- Sound knowledge of common referencing styles such as APA and MLA
- Commendable knowledge of various online search engines and libraries
- Proficient in using MS Word, MS Excel, and Adobe Acrobat
- Ability to collaborate with assigned teams on multiple projects, in a positive manner
- Ability to produce documents without any grammatical errors
University of Arizona – Tucson, AZ
August 2012 – Present
- Browsed various books and internet sites and researched on assigned topics.
- Composed and delivered academic articles, research papers, reviews, and guides.
- Proofread, edited, and corrected all given reports, properly and efficiently.
- Created and submitted documents for formatting to design team and publishers.
- Prepared internship contracts and assisted with placement of all interns, as required.
- Validated eligibility of students for special programs and monitored the academic progress of selected students.
University of Southern California – Los Angeles, CA
May 2009 – July 2012
- Conducted online research on specific topics and developed story concept.
- Planned and composedcreative and appealing academic content for organizational websites.
- Authored and provided educational essays, academic papers, research projects, and assignments.
- Drafted and submitted all manuscripts for various research journals, as requested.
- Checked and revisedcontent to meet requirements of institutions and clients.
- Prepared and presented style guides and other documents, as needed.
Master’s Degree in Academic Writing Theory and Practice
Del Mar College, Corpus Christi, TX