Career Discovery Tool
Science Buddies

Bioinformatics Scientist

Overview and Key Facts

man looking at computer analysing DNA data
Education
Education
Master's degree
Median Pay
Median Pay
$82,530
Job Growth
Job Growth
3.80%
(US Average)
Jobs in 2031
Jobs in 2031
52,500

What Do They Do?

A bioinformatics scientist could...

Overview Listen to this section

The human body can be viewed as a machine made up of complex processes. Scientists are working on figuring out how these processes work and on sequencing and correlating the sections of the genome that correspond to the individual processes. (The genome is an organism's complete set of genetic material.) In the course of doing so, they generate large amounts of data. So large, in fact, that to make sense of it, the data must be organized into databases and labeled. This is where bioinformatics scientists step in. They design databases and develop algorithms for processing and analyzing genomic and other biological information. These scientists work at the crossroads of biology and computer science.
Owen White is associate director of bioinformatics at the Institute for Genome Sciences, University of Maryland School of Medicine. In this video, Dr. White discusses what the bioinformatics field includes and why the need for bioinformatics scientists will increase in the future.

Do You Have the Skills and Characteristics of a Bioinformatics Scientist?


  1. Reading Comprehension: ?
  2. Critical Thinking: ?
  3. Active Listening: ?
  4. Complex Problem Solving: ?
  5. Speaking: ?

Core Tasks

Think about if you'd like the typical tasks a Bioinformatics Scientist might do:
  • Develop new software applications or customize existing applications to meet specific scientific project needs.
  • Communicate research results through conference presentations, scientific publications, or project reports.
  • Create novel computational approaches and analytical tools as required by research goals.
  • Consult with researchers to analyze problems, recommend technology-based solutions, or determine computational strategies.
  • Analyze large molecular datasets, such as raw microarray data, genomic sequence data, or proteomics data, for clinical or basic research purposes.
  • Keep abreast of new biochemistries, instrumentation, or software by reading scientific literature and attending professional conferences.
  • Develop data models and databases.
  • Compile data for use in activities, such as gene expression profiling, genome annotation, or structural bioinformatics.
  • Design and apply bioinformatics algorithms including unsupervised and supervised machine learning, dynamic programming, or graphic algorithms.
  • Manipulate publicly accessible, commercial, or proprietary genomic, proteomic, or post-genomic databases.
  • Direct the work of technicians and information technology staff applying bioinformatics tools or applications in areas such as proteomics, transcriptomics, metabolomics, or clinical bioinformatics.
  • Provide statistical and computational tools for biologically based activities, such as genetic analysis, measurement of gene expression, or gene function determination.
  • Create or modify web-based bioinformatics tools.

Salary & Job Openings

Steps to Get There: Becoming a Bioinformatics Scientist

Try it Out with an Activity or Project

On the Job

More Information

Please create a free account to view this career and access our full library of over 160 STEM careers.

Students    Teachers / Parents

With a free account you will have access to our full library of over 160 STEM careers. Each career profile includes detailed information to help you learn about a career and the requirements to get there. You can explore:

  • salary information by state
  • recommended high school coursework
  • fun projects and activities to test out a career
  • videos and interviews with professionals in the field
  • details on what a day on the job is like
Top
Free science fair projects.