Research Career Ladder


  • Research Career Ladder

    UAB's Research Career Ladder provides a clear career path for laboratory staff and investigators who do not have or seek academic appointments, and provides growth opportunities, while developing expertise, gaining experience and growing their profiles. Researchers are afforded a robust and transparent process to measure progression and reward career advancement. There are five levels of Researchers in the career ladder and UAB Researchers may be promoted from one level to the next as they gain experience and skills. The Scientist portion of the career ladder delineates the combination of education and experience needed to work in research laboratories and advance through the non-faculty ranks.

    Click on image to download/print Research Career Ladder.
  • Pay Ranges

    Job Title Job Code New Grade Min Mid Max Min Mid Max
    Scientist IV R010018 WR140 94,148.00 172,074.00 250,000 45.26 82.73 120.19
    Scientist III R010017 WR135 80,300.00 106,800.00 133,300.00 38.61 51.35 64.09
    Scientist II R010016 WR130 74,100.00 97,400.00 120,700.00 35.63 46.83 58.03
    Scientist I R010015 WR125 63,125.00 83,412.50 103,700.00 30.35 40.10 49.86
    Researcher V R010023 WR120 49,004.80 72,252.40 95,500.00 23.56 34.74 45.91
    Researcher IV R010022 WR115 47,486.40 66,243.20 85,000.00 22.83 31.85 40.87
    Researcher III R010021 WR110 35,570.00 46,300.00 59,800.00 17.10 22.26 28.75
    Researcher II R010020 WR105 27,000.00 37,950.00 48,900.00 12.98 18.25 23.51
    Researcher I R010019 WR100 22,880.00 31,890.00 40,900.00 11.00 15.33 19.66
  • Job Title Scope/Complexity* Core Attributes* General Summary of Duties* Typical Minimum Requirements* FLSA Status
    Researcher V Professional/leader position. Requires demonstrated knowledge of complex concepts and managerial responsibility; gained through education/experience and a high degree of independence and leadership Contributes significantly to publications, presentations and grant writing. Is responsible for independent work on the design, conduct or reporting of research, typically supervises a large research team, or is extremely well qualified in a particular technique; holds membership, leadership and presents at national meetings. Assumes significant responsibility for overall operation of Lab. Oversees projects within the laboratory. Monitors outcomes, develops and implements modifications and provides reports or other consultation to management. Contributes to the design, interpretation and writing of grant proposals and publications. Supervises and oversees maintenance of lab equipment and orders and supervises lab supplies. Directs and teaches others in lab practices both via face-to-face/virtual training and by developing guidelines for lab practices. Possesses extensive knowledge in specialized field of study. Doctorate + 1
    or MS + 3
    or BS or BA + 5
    Exempt
    Researcher IV Professional/leader position. Requires demonstrated knowledge of complex concepts gained through advanced education/experience Works with high degree of independence, frequently uses discretion and independent judgement in the design and execution of tasks. Takes initiative and provides consultation to management. Provides overall leadership, development and supervision for lab operations and staff. Oversees projects within the laboratory and assumes responsibility for the day-to-day operation of lab activities. Contributes significantly to the planning/design of studies. Interprets data. Monitors outcomes, develops modifications and provides data to management. Participates and helps develop long or short-term goals or strategic business objectives. With direction, contributes to Grant proposals and assist preparing and editing grant applications. Supervises lab equipment and supplies. Possesses advanced knowledge of lab practices, and directs and teaches others in lab practices. Possesses extensive knowledge in specialized field of study. Doctorate
    or MS + 2
    or BS or BA + 4
    or AD + 6
    Exempt
    Researcher III Professional position. Requires demonstrated knowledge of moderate to complex concepts gained through education/experience Works independently for specified tasks as defined by Supervisor. Good communication skills and professional/technically proficient. May supervise and assist research staff and students. As directed, independently sets up and performs experiments and procedures in support of lab goals. Develops and improves techniques for the lab. Contributes to planning/design of studies. Analyzes data. Monitors outcomes and suggest modifications. May assist in planning long or short-term goals/fiscal management. Perform maintenance of lab equipment and supplies. MS
    or BS or BA + 2
    or AD + 4
    Exempt
    Researcher II Mid-level position. Uses knowledge of fundamental concepts, practices, procedures etc. with moderate complexity Works under guidance with responsibilities generally within established parameters. Increased technical competence. Makes decisions on prioritizing work and may perform some assignments/task independently as approved. May instruct other lab personnel in techniques. Sets up and performs routine and established lab procedures in support of lab goals, runs assays, cell/tissue culture, animal studies, etc. Collects, enters and summarizes data. Monitors results and detects and reports unusual outcomes. Assist in the maintenance and troubleshooting of lab equipment and supplies. Performs basic statistical data analysis. Works with minimal supervision for defined tasks and is expected to perform some assignments independently. BS or BA
    or AD + 2
    Nonexempt
    Researcher I Entry-level position with low complexity and focused set of duties Works under direct or close supervision in delivering job tasks, performing routine procedures primarily according to set protocols. Attention to detail when performing prescribed duties. Generally works under close supervision. Performs various support functions in research laboratory using appropriate procedures to generate and validate data of sufficient quality for project development, publications and grant submissions. Maintains and cleans equipment and the facility; maintains and restocks supplies; and maintains computer database. Works under direct supervision. AD
    or HS + 2
    Nonexempt

    *At each level, an individual is expected to meet all educational and skills requirements at that level and for all levels below it.