Position Classification Description

Position Class Code / Title: L4020 / HS Sr Research Specialist
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.


Designs, organizes, and executes research protocol of a nature requiring a level of technical qualification and skill that is unique and/or in particularly high demand within an advanced area of health sciences research. Independently develops protocols, procedures, and techniques. Coordinates all day-to-day aspects of specific research assignments, and participates in the analysis, interpretation, and reporting of research findings. Provides technical oversight and instruction to lower level technologists and/or visiting researchers, as appropriate.

Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Independently performs highly complex laboratory data acquisition, manipulation, reduction, and analysis within an advanced or pioneering area of scientific specialty.
  2. Compiles data and computes results, ensuring quality control and compliance with protocol, and provides comprehensive analyses of results to researchers; makes authoritative recommendations for improvements in techniques and interpretation, as appropriate.
  3. Directly collaborates with faculty researchers in experiment design; provides technical leadership in the development and coordination of research and/or computer protocols.
  4. Uses complex and/or advanced specialized statistical and scientific programs to process experimental data.
  5. Selects, designs, develops, modifies, and/or adapts equipment, facilities, and/or instrumentation to specific project requirements.
  6. 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.
  7. Practices safety, environmental, and/or infection control methods.
  8. Performs miscellaneous job-related duties as assigned.

Minimum Job Requirements

  • High school diploma or GED; at least 9 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

  • Ability to develop and follow research methodology and protocol.
  • Advanced knowledge and understanding of experimental procedures and data analysis, manipulation, and reduction, within an area of research specialty.
  • Authoritative knowledge of research principles and methodology within area of specialty.
  • Knowledge of advanced data analysis and statistical applications, programs, and techniques.
  • Ability to analyze research methodology, protocol, and procedures and make recommendations for improvements and modifications.
  • Ability to develop creative solutions to unique, unprecendented operational research problems.

Conditions of Employment

  • For individual positions in which driving is a job requirement, a valid NM driver's license and valid UNM driver's permit will be required.
  • Successful candidate must submit to post-offer, pre-employment physical examination and medical history check.

Working Conditions and Physical Effort

  • Work may, on occasion, involve exposure to unusual elements, such as extreme temperatures, dirt, dust, fumes, smoke, unpleasant odors, and/or loud noises.
  • Moderate physical activity. May require physical effort including lifting up to 25 pounds and some extended periods of standing or walking.
  • Work may on occasion involve exposure to potentially dangerous materials and situations that may require following extensive safety precautions and may include the use of protective equipment.

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

Revised Date: 03/20/2017