Position Classification Description

Position Class Code / Title: L2004 / Sr Research Scientist 2
Recruitment Tier: Tier 1
FLSA: Exempt
Grade: 15

This is a description of a Staff Position Classification. It is not an announcement of a position opening. To view descriptions of current openings, please go to UNMJobs and Search Postings to view positions that are currently accepting applications.

The following statements are intended to describe, in broad terms, the general functions and responsibility levels characteristic of positions assigned to this classification. They should not be viewed as an exhaustive list of the specific duties and prerequisites applicable to individual positions that have been so classified.


Independently interprets, organizes, executes, and coordinates research assignments. Formulates and conducts research on problems of considerable scope and complexity. Explores subject area and defines scope and selection of problems for investigation through conceptually related studies or series of projects of lesser scope.

Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Applies diversified knowledge of scientific research principles, practices, and protocols in research projects; makes recommendations and conclusions which serve as the basis for decision making in a specialty area.
  2. Collaborates with users and principal investigators on design, analysis, application, and reporting of research projects; teaches and advises on techniques.
  3. Interprets, organizes, executes, and coordinates scientific research assignments concerned with unique or controversial problems.
  4. Formulates and conducts systematic problem analysis and resolution in an area of considerable scope and complexity through series of complete and conceptually related studies, or through a variety of projects of lesser scope.
  5. Develops model concepts and approaches as an individual researcher and acts independently on technical matters.
  6. Supplies technical leadership and consultation to professional co-workers, collaborators, and graduate students.
  7. Prepares analyses, reports, and other documentation for publication; presents findings at local, national, and/or international meetings.
  8. Prepares grant proposals to obtain funding in support of research activities.
  9. Serves as principal investigator on single or multiple projects of complexity and scope consistent with above criteria, and/or manages a research unit.
  10. Maintains currency of knowledge with respect to relevant state-of-the-art technology, equipment, and/or systems.
  11. Performs miscellaneous job-related duties as assigned.

Minimum Job Requirements

  • Master's degree; at least 7 years of experience directly related to the duties and responsibilities specified.
  • Completed degree(s) from an accredited institution that are above the minimum education requirement may be substituted for experience on a year for year basis.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities Required

  • Knowledge of current technological developments/trends in area of expertise.
  • Ability to provide technical guidance and leadership to professional personnel in area of expertise.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills and the ability to work effectively with a wide range of constituencies in a diverse community.
  • Knowledge of scientific approach and methodologies.
  • Ability to develop and deliver presentations.
  • Ability to draw conclusions and make recommendations based on research data and findings.
  • Ability to develop scientific reports and manuscripts based on original research.
  • Skill in organizing resources and establishing priorities.
  • Skill in educating others in research methods and techniques in area of expertise.
  • Knowledge of contracts and grants preparation and management.
  • Ability to conduct systematic analysis and develop solutions to complex scientific and/or engineering problems.
  • Ability to utilize advanced computer statistical and technical applications.
  • Knowledge of engineering and/or scientific research principles, practices, and protocols.
  • Knowledge of management principles and practices.
  • Ability to use independent judgment to develop model concepts and approaches for research.
  • Comprehensive knowledge of engineering, scientific, and/or mathematical concepts and theories in area of specialty.
  • Ability to plan, develop, and coordinate multiple projects.

Distinguishing Characteristics

    Position requires: a) interpretation, design, organization, and implementation of integrated and complex research programs of broad scope and significance; b) development, modification, and extension of advanced scientific theories and practices; c) definition of scope and direction of research investigations; d) technical management of other scientists and/or research staff; e) leadership in the development and submission of multifaceted budgets and broadly defined grant proposals; f) principal authorship of broadly-based manuscripts based on original research; g) external collaboration, representation, and professional leadership within the field of study.

Conditions of Employment

  • Successful candidate must submit to a post-offer, pre-employment physical examination and medical history check. Additional health screenings may be required, dependent on the nature of the research conducted, as determined by Employee Occupational Health Services.

Working Conditions and Physical Effort

  • No or very limited physical effort required.
  • Work environment involves minimal exposure to physical risks, such as operating dangerous equipment or working with chemicals.
  • Work is normally performed in a typical interior/office work environment.

The University of New Mexico provides all training required by OSHA to ensure employee safety.

Revised Date: 07/31/2018