Research Specialist

Maryland, United States
$17.03 - $23.40 per hour
04 Oct 2018
End of advertisement period
04 Dec 2018
Academic Discipline
Life sciences, Biological Sciences
Contract Type
Full Time

Role/Level/Range: ACRP/03/MA 
Starting Salary Range: $17.03 - $23.40 per hour
Employee group: Full Time 
Schedule: TYPICALLY M-F/37.5 
Exempt Status: Non-Exempt  
Location: 01-MD:Homewood Campus 
Department name: 10001376-Psychological and Brain Sciences 
Personnel area: School of Arts & Sciences

This position involves conducting behavioral and neurobiological experiments with animal models primarily in studies of aging, learning, and memory, maintaining the research facilities and organizing the various projects within the scope of the laboratory research programs.

Essential Duties & Responsibilities:

Scientific Research and Reporting

Perform all aspects of experiments including, but not limited to:

  • Coordinating with members of the various laboratory programs
  • Acquiring animals from collaborators and vendors
  • Maintaining a colony of pathogen free animals
  • Maintaining animal inventories and monitoring their health status and environment
  • Maintaining an animal testing facility.
  • Planning and scheduling of experiments on various behavioral tasks, where duties related to behavioral testing include
    • Handling, and placing the animals in experimental chambers for experimental sessions
    • Data collection and analysis on behaviorally tested animals includes scoring of behavior from videotapes and the use of simple computer analysis programs, spreadsheets, and statistical/graphical software packages
    • Transfer of behavioral data to a central data management facility, and providing the collaborators with the data from the experiments.
  • Neuroanatomical and histological procedures include surgery, fixation, dissection, slicing, and staining brain material from laboratory animals.
  • Responsible for the screening of data from said experiments, for experimenter error and/or tracking error before supplying data to other personnel and collaborators and thorough record keeping


  • Responsible for instructing the laboratory personnel on various laboratory protocols and procedures as well as training students, staff and scientists on various methods.
  • These may include animal perfusion and histology such as brain slicing and immunohistochemistry; appropriate cleaning of glassware, preparation of stock solutions and buffers according to standard protocols.
  • Assists in hiring and training and supervising undergraduate researchers, including organizing and scheduling experiments.

Information Technology Support

  • Instruct lab personnel in the use of various computer software packages and computer interfaces.
  • Maintains the computer automated animal behavioral testing facilities, including consultation for usage, software and/or hardware modifications and/or upgrades.
  • Ensures that computers and other behavioral testing equipment are operating correctly and that data are being appropriately and accurately compiled for analysis.

Lab Space & Safety

  • Responsible for maintaining a clean and safe lab space.
  • This includes cleaning and maintaining experimental rooms and equipment; proper labeling of new supplies/materials and proper disposal of chemicals and other waste.
  • Remains up to date on training and safety requirements.
  • Other duties as assigned.



  • Bachelor's degree in biology, chemistry or related field.
  • One year of laboratory experience performing relevant techniques.
  • Master's degree, with related graduate research, may substitute for experience to the extent permitted by the JHU equivalency formula.

JHU Equivalency Formula: 

30 undergraduate degree credits (semester hours) or 18 graduate degree credits may substitute for one year of experience.


  • Laboratory experience with methods identified under primary research duties and/or techniques and familiarity with some of listed equipment is highly preferred.

Special Knowledge and Skills:

  • Working knowledge of one or more of the following disciplines achieved through coursework and laboratory experience: behavioral psychology, biology, biochemistry, neuroscience and/or genetics. 
  • This individual must be able work independently with little or no supervision as well as communicate well with others.
  • Excellent organizational skills are required and proficiency with standard word processing and data analysis (e.g. excel) programs in both Macintosh and PC computers is expected.
  • Preferred knowledge of the following techniques/equipment: animal behavioral experiments (and associated equipment such as HVS-Image Tracking system, Med-pc and Colbourn behavioral testing apparati); surgical and histological skills; immunohistochemistry; microscopy; imaging/scanning; windows-based and Macintosh computers (for automated behavioral testing, data analysis, and general lab work)
  • Exceptional organizational skills with attention to detail

The successful candidate(s) for this position will be subject to a pre-employment background check.

If you are interested in applying for employment with The Johns Hopkins University and require special assistance or accommodation during any part of the pre-employment process, please contact the HR Business Services Office at For TTY users, call via Maryland Relay or dial 711.

The following additional provisions may apply depending on which campus you will work.  Your recruiter will advise accordingly.

During the Influenza ("the flu") season, as a condition of employment, The Johns Hopkins Institutions require all employees who provide ongoing services to patients or work in patient care or clinical care areas to have an annual influenza vaccination or possess an approved medical or religious exception. Failure to meet this requirement may result in termination of employment.

The pre-employment physical for positions in clinical areas, laboratories, working with research subjects, or involving community contact requires documentation of immune status against Rubella (German measles), Rubeola (Measles), Mumps, Varicella (chickenpox), Hepatitis B and documentation of having received the Tdap (Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis) vaccination. This may include documentation of having two (2) MMR vaccines; two (2) Varicella vaccines; or antibody status to these diseases from laboratory testing. Blood tests for immunities to these diseases are ordinarily included in the pre-employment physical exam except for those employees who provide results of blood tests or immunization documentation from their own health care providers. Any vaccinations required for these diseases will be given at no cost in our Occupational Health office.

Equal Opportunity Employer

Note: Job Postings are updated daily and remain online until filled. 

EEO is the Law

Learn more:

Important legal information: