Research officers plan and conduct research into a variety of issues or areas.
To become a research officer you usually have to complete a degree with a major that is relevant to the field in which you wish to conduct research. Research can be conducted into any field of learning but you could consider studies in arts, biology, economics, Indigenous studies, mathematics, medicine, political science, science and geology. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your Senior Secondary Certificate of Education. Universities have different prerequisites and some have flexible entry requirements or offer external study. Contact the institutions you are interested in for more information.
Research officers may perform the following tasks:
Research officers can work in a wide variety of research fields, including medical, biological, educational, social, academic, economic, mathematical, legislation and human rights, human resources, business operations, the arts and creative arts, exploration and mining, communications technologies, logistics, information sciences, operations and political areas.
Research officers are employed by federal, state and territory government departments and organisations as well as trade unions, political parties, universities and non-profit organisations. Some work in the private sector for organisations that provide consultancy services to other organisations. Employment prospects for research officers are affected by the level of funding available in their chosen areas. With experience and sometimes further training, promotion to managerial positions is possible. For more information about joining the public service, see the separate entries for Public Servant - Australian Public Service and Public Servant - State Government.
An operations researcher develops methodologies for analysing and solving problems in government, business and industry, often using mathematical tools, statistical analysis and computers.