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Career and Education Opportunities for Social Research Assistants in Madison, Wisconsin

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for social research assistants in the Madison, Wisconsin area. There are currently 660 jobs for social research assistants in Wisconsin and this is projected to grow 6% to about 700 jobs by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for social research assistants are expected to grow by about 17.8%. Social research assistants generally assist social scientists in laboratory, survey, and other social research.

Social research assistants earn about $17 per hour or $35,360 yearly on average in Wisconsin and about $17 per hour or $35,650 annually on average nationally. Incomes for social research assistants are the same as in the overall category of Social Science Technical in Wisconsin, and the same as the overall Social Science Technical category nationally. Jobs in this field include: data specialist, research specialist, and research associate.

The Madison area is home to thirteen schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Madison where you can get a degree as a social research assistant. Given that the most common education level for social research assistants is a Bachelor's degree, it will take about four years to learn to be a social research assistant if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Social Research Assistant

In general, social research assistants assist social scientists in laboratory, survey, and other social research. They also may perform publication activities, laboratory analysis, or data management.

Social research assistants furnish assistance with the preparation of project-related reports and presentations. They also ready tables and written reports summarizing research results. Equally important, social research assistants have to conduct internet-based and library research. They are often called upon to perform data entry and other clerical work as required for the completion of projects. Finally, social research assistants edit and submit protocols and other required research documentation.

Every day, social research assistants are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they read and understand documents and reports.

It is important for social research assistants to verify the accuracy and validity of data entered in databases; correct any errors. They are often called upon to present research findings to groups of people. They also furnish assistance in the layout of survey instruments such as questionnaires. They are sometimes expected to ready and oversee extensive databases. Somewhat less frequently, social research assistants are also expected to supervise the work of survey interviewers.

Social research assistants sometimes are asked to screen potential subjects in order to establish their suitability as study participants. They also have to be able to edit and submit protocols and other required research documentation And finally, they sometimes have to track research participants, and perform any needed follow-up tasks.

Like many other jobs, social research assistants must have exceptional integrity and be thorough and dependable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Madison include:

  • Community Planner. Compile data from various sources, such as maps, reports, and field and file investigations, for use by city planner in making planning studies.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Social Research Assistant Training

Edgewood College - Madison, WI

Edgewood College, 1000 Edgewood College Drive, Madison, WI 53711-1997. Edgewood College is a small college located in Madison, Wisconsin. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,544 students and an admission rate of 76%. Edgewood College has a bachelor's degree program in Social Sciences which graduated six students in 2008.


Certified GIS/LIS Technologist: This is certification is for technicians who integrate a variety of spatial data sets into a GIS format designed for graphic output or analysis.

For more information, see the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing - Imaging & Geospatial Information Society website.


Madison, Wisconsin
Madison, Wisconsin photo by Dori

Madison is situated in Dane County, Wisconsin. It has a population of over 231,916, which has grown by 11.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Madison, 86, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Madison are valued at $243,800 on average, which is near the state average. In 2008, one hundred forty-eight new homes were constructed in Madison, down from three hundred seventy-four the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Madison are educational services, health care, and finance and insurance. For men, it is educational services, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 18 minutes. More than 48.2% of Madison residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 20.9%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Madison is 5.2%, which is less than Wisconsin's average of 7.7%.

The percentage of Madison residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 52.5%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Gates of Heaven Synagogue, Abundant Life Church and Grace Episcopal Church are some of the churches located in Madison. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the United Methodist Church.

Madison is home to the Allen Centennial Gardens and the Annie C Stewart Memorial Fountain as well as Bordner Park and Brigham Park. Shopping centers in the area include Brookwood Village Shopping Center, Whitney Square Shopping Center and Walnut Grove Shopping Center. Visitors to Madison can choose from Comfort Inn Madison, Howard Johnson-Plaza Hotel and Country Inn Sts Madison for temporary stays in the area.