Biological Scientists, All Other
Licensure, Registration, or Certification Requirements:
Generally licensure/certification is not required for Medical Scientists positions.
Educational Training and Learning Opportunities:
The Department of Labor provides the following information:
Students planning careers as medical scientists should have a bachelor's degree in a biological science. In addition to required courses in chemistry and biology, undergraduates should study allied disciplines such as mathematics, physics, and computer science, or courses in their field of interest. Once they have completed undergraduate studies, they can then select a specialty area for their advanced degree, such as cytology, genomics, or pathology. In addition to formal education, medical scientists usually spend several years in a postdoctoral position before they apply for permanent jobs. Postdoctoral work provides valuable laboratory experience, including experience in specific processes and techniques such as gene splicing, which is transferable to other research projects. In some institutions, the postdoctoral position can lead to a permanent job.
A Ph.D. degree in a biological science is the minimum education required for most prospective medical scientists, except epidemiologists, because the work of medical scientists is almost entirely research oriented. A Ph.D. degree qualifies one to do research on basic life processes or on particular medical problems or diseases, and to analyze and interpret the results of experiments on patients. Some medical scientists obtain a medical degree instead of a Ph.D., but may not be licensed physicians because they have not taken the State licensing examination or completed a residency program, typically because they prefer research to clinical practice.
The Virginia Area Health Education Centers Program lists four Virginia educational institutions that offer programs as a medical research scientist. Those schools are University of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and Virginia Wesleyan College.
For more information, see:
The data sources for the information displayed here include: Virginia Career VIEW Research.