The Average Salary of a Pharmaceutical Scientist

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Pharmaceutical scientists are not to be confused with pharmacists who prepare medications that physicians prescribe for their patients and advise patients about the proper way to take their medicine. Pharmaceutical scientists are involved in the research, development, design, testing and manufacturing of new drugs. Most are employed at universities, teaching hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology firms, research institutes and government agencies.

Average Salaries for Pharmaceutical Scientists

  • Pharmaceutical scientists who work in academic institutions typically earn lower wages than those who work in industry and other settings. In 2013, the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists conducted a salary survey of full-time pharmaceutical scientists. The results showed that respondents working in academia earned the following national average annual salaries: $90,400 at the 25th percentile of the study, $107,200 at the 50th percentile and $151,500 at the 75th percentile. Respondents who worked in industry and other non-academic sectors earned the following national average annual salaries: $105,000 at the 25th percentile, $135,000 at the 50th percentile and $180,000 at the 75th percentile.

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