Position Classification Description

Position Class Code / Title: L3001 / Research Scientist 3
Recruitment Tier: Tier 1
FLSA: Exempt
Grade: 13

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.


Under general supervision, employs a broad knowledge of principles, practices, and procedures in a particular field of specialization to plan, coordinate, and conduct research.

Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Plans, coordinates, and conducts scientific research requiring judgment in the independent evaluation, selection, and substantial adaptation and modification of standard scientific techniques.
  2. Applies an analytical approach to the solution of a wide variety of problems, or applies specialized techniques or ingenuity in selecting and evaluating approaches to unforeseen or novel problems.
  3. Demonstrates and applies thorough understanding of scientific methods, research protocols, assessment instruments, and data interpretation.
  4. Designs, performs, and/or oversees experiments and data collection to ensure data integrity, quality control, and protocol compliance.
  5. Collects, analyzes, and interprets data; prepares statistical and narrative reports and/or graphs, as appropriate to the specific position; prepares manuscripts for publication; presents research results to scientific conferences and other groups.
  6. Independently performs most research assignments with instructions as to the general results expected; receives guidance on unusual or complex problems.
  7. Ensures proper care in the use and maintenance of equipment and supplies; promotes continuous improvement of workplace safety and environmental practices.
  8. Maintains currency of knowledge with respect to relevant state-of-the-art technology, equipment, and/or systems.
  9. Serves as principal investigator, as appropriate, on sub-projects of complexities consistent with above criteria.
  10. May lead, guide, and train staff/student employees, interns, and/or volunteers performing related work; may participate in the recruitment of volunteers, as appropriate to the area of operation.
  11. Performs miscellaneous job-related duties as assigned.

Minimum Job Requirements

  • Bachelor's degree; at least 3 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 scientific approach and methodologies.
  • Ability to develop and follow research methodology and protocol.
  • Knowledge of current technological developments/trends in area of expertise.
  • Skill in the use of personal computers and related software applications.
  • Ability to develop scientific reports and manuscripts based on original research.
  • Ability to conduct systematic analysis and develop solutions to complex scientific problems.
  • Knowledge of scientific research principles, practices, and protocols.
  • Ability to design, organize, and coordinate scientific research projects.
  • Ability to read, understand, follow, and enforce safety procedures.
  • Ability to perform independent, original research in an advanced area of scientific expertise.
  • Ability to use independent judgment to adapt and modify research concepts and approaches to specific projects.

Distinguishing Characteristics

    Position requires: a) utilization, adaptation, and modification of scientific methods, techniques, and procedures in the performance of research involving both multiple variables and broad scope and/or complexity; b) independent conception, design, and implementation of research programs of standard scope, or broadly-defined, unusually complex research projects within a major, multifaceted research program; c) utilization of advanced knowledge and expertise within a specified scientific field of research to establish model concepts; d) oversight and leadership of self-initiated research sub-projects; e) authoring or co-authoring of reports and manuscripts based on original research.

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 some exposure to hazards or physical risks, which require following basic safety precautions.
  • 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