10 Of The Best Careers In Neuroscience [2024]

As Seen In

logo of wsj
logo of wsj
logo of business-insider
logo of business-insider
logo of cnn
logo of cnn
logo of fatherly
logo of fatherly
logo of nbc
logo of nbc

Table Of Contents

Starting a career in neuroscience? You're looking at an exciting world where understanding the brain and nervous system isn't just about job titles. It's about making a real difference in how we understand ourselves, treat brain-related illnesses, and improve mental health.

Whether you're thinking about switching careers to something more meaningful or just starting out and drawn to the idea of contributing to important discoveries, there's a place for you in neuroscience. This field has everything from hands-on research and clinical work to cutting-edge tech jobs.

In this guide, we'll walk you through the different career options available, helping you find the perfect fit for your interests and skills. Ready to see how your curiosity about the brain can turn into a rewarding career? Let's dive in.

Quickstart Guide To Landing A Career In Neuroscience

  1. Polish your resume. Before diving into the job market, give your resume a makeover. Consider using a resume writing service to ensure your skills and experiences shine.
  2. Connect with a like-minded community. Join The UnBREAKable Community to network with individuals who share your career aspirations and can offer support and advice.
  3. Search for jobs on ZipRecruiter. Utilize job posting sites like ZipRecruiter to find the latest opportunities in neuroscience. It's a great way to see what's out there and apply to roles that match your interest and expertise.

Discover Your Dream Job

Find jobs near you and apply with 1 click! New jobs posted daily.

Get started with ZipRecruiter
ZipRecruiter logo

10 Of The Best Careers In Neuroscience

1. Neurologist

Median National Salary: $347,714/year

Education Required: Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO), followed by a residency in neurology

Job Duties: A neurologist is responsible for diagnosing and treating disorders of the nervous system, including the brain, spinal cord, and nerves. They use their expertise in neurology, diagnostic testing, and treatment modalities to provide specialized care for patients with neurological conditions, such as epilepsy, stroke, and multiple sclerosis.

2. Neuropsychologist

Median National Salary: $111,325/year

Education Required: Doctoral degree (PhD or PsyD) in psychology with a specialization in neuropsychology

Job Duties: A neuropsychologist is responsible for assessing and treating cognitive, emotional, and behavioral issues related to brain dysfunction or injury. They use their expertise in neuropsychological assessment, rehabilitation, and counseling to help individuals with neurological conditions, such as traumatic brain injury or dementia, to improve their cognitive and emotional functioning.

3. Neuroscience Researcher

Median National Salary: $58,746/year

Education Required: PhD in neuroscience or a related field

Job Duties: A neuroscience researcher is responsible for conducting experiments, analyzing data, and publishing findings to advance understanding of the brain and nervous system. They use their expertise in neuroscience, experimental design, and data analysis to contribute to scientific knowledge and potentially develop treatments for neurological disorders.

4. Neuroscience Nurse

Median National Salary: $55,338/year

Education Required: Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and certification in neuroscience nursing

Job Duties: A neuroscience nurse is responsible for providing specialized care to patients with neurological conditions, such as stroke, head injuries, or brain tumors. They use their expertise in neurology, patient assessment, and symptom management to deliver comprehensive care, educate patients and families, and support rehabilitation efforts for individuals with neurological health issues.

5. Neuropharmacologist

Median National Salary: $54,791/year

Education Required: PhD in pharmacology or related field with a focus on neuropharmacology

Job Duties: A neuropharmacologist is responsible for studying the effects of drugs on the nervous system and developing medications to treat neurological disorders. They use their expertise in pharmacology, neuroscience, and drug development to conduct research, identify potential therapeutic compounds, and contribute to the advancement of treatments for conditions such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and epilepsy.

6. Clinical Neurophysiologist

Median National Salary: $72,002/year

Education Required: MD or DO with specialized training in neurophysiology

Job Duties: A clinical neurophysiologist is responsible for diagnosing and monitoring neurological disorders by performing and interpreting tests such as EEGs (electroencephalograms) and EMGs (electromyograms). They use their expertise in neurophysiology, medical testing, and patient care to assess brain and nerve function, aid in the diagnosis of conditions like epilepsy and peripheral nerve disorders, and contribute to treatment planning for patients with neurological issues.

7. Psychiatrist

Median National Salary: $259,497/year

Education Required: Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) with a residency in psychiatry

Job Duties: A psychiatrist is responsible for diagnosing, treating, and providing care for individuals with mental health disorders. They use their expertise in psychiatry, psychotherapy, and medication management to assess patients, develop treatment plans, and provide support for conditions such as depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia.

8. Neuroscience Sales Representative

Median National Salary: $52,784/year

Education Required: Bachelor's degree

Job Duties: A neuroscience sales representative is responsible for promoting and selling pharmaceutical products or medical devices related to neurological conditions to healthcare professionals. They use their expertise in sales, product knowledge, and customer relationship management to educate healthcare providers, build relationships, and drive sales to support the treatment of neurological disorders.

9. Neuroinformatics Specialist

Median National Salary: $114,249/year

Education Required: Master's or PhD in neuroscience, computer science, or related field

Job Duties: A neuroinformatics specialist is responsible for managing and analyzing complex neuroscience data, such as brain imaging and genetic information, to support research and clinical applications. They use their expertise in data management, bioinformatics, and neuroscience to develop tools, algorithms, and databases that enable researchers and clinicians to extract valuable insights from large-scale neurological data sets.

10. Neurobiologist

Median National Salary: $93,442/year

Education Required: PhD in neurobiology or a closely related field

Job Duties: A neurobiologist is responsible for studying the nervous system and its functions, conducting research to understand brain development, neural circuits, and neurological disorders. They use their expertise in biology, neuroscience, and laboratory techniques to investigate the structure and function of the nervous system, contributing to advancements in our understanding of brain function and potential treatments for neurological conditions.

Requirements And Skills To Find A Good-Paying Job In Neuroscience

Educational Requirements

  • Undergraduate Degree: Most careers in neuroscience begin with a bachelor's degree in neuroscience, biology, psychology, or a related field. This foundational education introduces students to the basics of brain science and prepares them for advanced study.
  • Graduate Education: For many positions, especially in research, academia, or specialized clinical roles, a master's or doctoral degree (PhD) in neuroscience or a related discipline is essential. Medical doctors (MDs) interested in neurology or psychiatry will need to complete medical school followed by residency and possibly fellowship training in their specialty.


  • Analytical Skills: The ability to analyze complex data sets, understand scientific literature, and design experiments is crucial in neuroscience. Researchers and clinicians alike must be able to draw meaningful conclusions from their observations and studies.
  • Technical Proficiency: Depending on the role, technical skills can range from proficiency in laboratory techniques (like microscopy or electrophysiology) to advanced computing skills for data analysis and modeling in neuroinformatics.
  • Communication Skills: Clear and effective communication is vital, whether it's writing research papers, presenting findings, or explaining complex neurological conditions to patients and their families.
  • Problem-Solving Ability: Neuroscience professionals often face challenging and sometimes unprecedented problems. The ability to think critically and creatively to solve these problems is key.
  • Attention to Detail: Whether conducting experiments, diagnosing patients, or analyzing data, attention to detail is essential for accuracy and success in neuroscience careers.
  • Empathy and Patience: For those working directly with patients, such as neurologists, psychiatrists, and neuroscience nurses, empathy and patience are crucial in providing compassionate care and support.

Best Places To Find A Career In Neuroscience

Job Posting Sites

Job posting sites, like ZipRecruiter, are a great starting point for finding neuroscience positions. These platforms aggregate listings from various sectors, including academia, healthcare, and biotechnology, making it easier to find opportunities that match your qualifications and interests. They often feature advanced search filters, allowing you to narrow down your search by location, job type, and experience level. This broad access and customization make job posting sites an indispensable tool in your job search arsenal.

For more information, check out our ZipRecruiter review.

Discover Your Dream Job

Find jobs near you and apply with 1 click! New jobs posted daily.

Get started with ZipRecruiter
ZipRecruiter logo

Professional Associations

Professional associations in neuroscience and related fields often have career centers or job boards where members can find specialized openings. These associations are tailored to professionals in the field, meaning the jobs listed are highly relevant and cater to a wide range of experience levels, from entry-level to senior positions. Additionally, membership in these organizations can provide networking opportunities, access to industry news, and resources for professional development, further supporting your career growth.

University Career Services

For students and recent graduates, university career services are a valuable resource for finding jobs in neuroscience. These services may offer access to job postings not widely available elsewhere, as well as internship and fellowship opportunities that can lead to full-time positions. Career advisors can also provide personalized guidance on resume writing, interview preparation, and career planning, helping you to effectively market yourself for neuroscience roles.

Industry Conferences and Networking Events

Attending industry conferences and networking events is another great option for uncovering job opportunities in neuroscience. These events bring together professionals from across the field, from researchers and clinicians to educators and industry representatives. Networking at these events can lead to valuable connections, insider knowledge about open positions, and even direct job offers. Furthermore, conferences often include career fairs or job boards, providing another avenue to discover opportunities.

Research Institutions and University Job Boards

Many neuroscience jobs, especially in research, are found within universities and dedicated research institutions. These organizations typically have their own job boards, where they post vacancies for researchers, lab technicians, and administrative staff. Working in such environments offers the chance to be at the forefront of neuroscience research, contributing to advancements in the field. Additionally, these positions often provide opportunities for professional development and career progression within the institution.

The Bottom Line

Now that you've explored some of the top neuroscience careers, you are armed with knowledge to tackle your next career move.

If you're ready to take the next step, ZipRecruiter has neuroscience careers waiting for you to explore. Start your search on ZipRecruiter today and move one step closer to your dream job in neuroscience.