Social Science Research Assistants

Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics > Science and Mathematics

Projected Growth: Faster than average

Projected Job Openings

Considerable Preparation Needed

Job Description

Your job is to Assist social scientists in laboratory, survey, and other social science research. May help prepare findings for publication and assist in laboratory analysis, quality control, or data management.

Common job titles of Social Science Research Assistants include:

Experience and Education

A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for this occupation. For example, a person in this occupation must complete four years of college and work for several years in industry to be considered qualified.

  • 52.73% said they needed a Bachelor's Degree.

  • 36.7% said they needed a Master's Degree.


    Perform data entry and other clerical work as required for project completion.

    Conduct internet-based and library research.

    Prepare, manipulate, and manage extensive databases.

    Recruit and schedule research participants.

    Allocate and manage laboratory space and resources.

    Collect specimens such as blood samples, as required by research projects.

    Supervise the work of survey interviewers.

    Track research participants, and perform any necessary follow-up tasks.

    Administer standardized tests to research subjects, or interview them to collect research data.

    Screen potential subjects to determine their suitability as study participants.

    Code data in preparation for computer entry.

    Perform descriptive and multivariate statistical analyses of data, using computer software.

    Obtain informed consent of research subjects or their guardians.

    Perform needs assessments or consult with clients to determine the types of research and information required.

    Track laboratory supplies and expenses such as participant reimbursement.

    Design and create special programs for tasks such as statistical analysis and data entry and cleaning.

    Edit and submit protocols and other required research documentation.

    Verify the accuracy and validity of data entered in databases, correcting any errors.

    Provide assistance in the design of survey instruments such as questionnaires.

    Present research findings to groups of people.

    Develop and implement research quality control procedures.

    Prepare tables, graphs, fact sheets, and written reports summarizing research results.

    Provide assistance with the preparation of project-related reports, manuscripts, and presentations.


Transcription equipment

Tablet computers

Photocopying equipment

Personal computers

Multi-line telephone systems

Desktop computers

Computer laser printers

All Tools

Computer data input scanners


Adobe Systems Adobe Illustrator

Adobe Systems Adobe InDesign

ESRI ArcGIS software

IBM SPSS Statistics

Microsoft SQL Server



All Technologies

The MathWorks MATLAB

Graphics software

Online library databases

StataCorp Stata

Video development software

Web browser software


Reading Comprehension

Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.


Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Critical Thinking

Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Active Listening

Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.


Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Complex Problem Solving

Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.


Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.


Using mathematics to solve problems.

Active Learning

Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Judgment and Decision Making

Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Learning Strategies

Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.

Systems Analysis

Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.


Listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Comprehension

Read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Written Comprehension

Communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Expression

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