PHARMACOLOGISTS study the effects of drugs and other chemical agents of therapeutic value on biological systems. Pharmacologists conduct clinical research trials for new drugs. They study the effects of a medicine over a period of time. Pharmacologists work closely with other scientists and health professionals to ensure that new products are as safe and effective as possible. Pharmacologists may also evaluate new drugs for pharmaceutical companies. They may develop new or improved drugs and medicines. They work to standardize procedures for the manufacture of drugs and medicinal compounds.
Salary, Size & Growth
- $74,500 average per year ($35.75 per hour)
- A medium occupation (93,600 workers in 2010)
- Expected to grow rapidly (4.0% per year)
To become a PHARMACOLOGIST, a Ph.D. degree or other doctoral degree is required. Earning a Ph.D. degree generally takes four to five years. Since pharmacology is not offered in most undergraduate programs, students are advised to earn a bachelor's degree in chemistry, one of the biological sciences, or in pharmacy. Before taking permanent positions, most Ph.D. graduates complete two to four years of further research training. No special licensing or certification is required for pharmacologists.