Qualifications of a Scientist
What are the qualifications of a scientist?
The word itself will assist. ===> S-C-I-E-N-C-E
Study skills that should be already sharply honed by now
Curiosity and a willingness to revise one's opinions when the facts lead
counter to your pet beliefs
Intelligence, because the knowledge base of science is very demanding
Enthusiasm to carry you through those inevitable research disappointments
Never-ending attention to detail that will make your research able to
withstand the scrutiny of your peers
Commitment to a life of personal and professional honesty and responsibility
Enduring respect and appreciation for the work of those who paved the way
The most important qualification to be a scientist is a strong urge to want
to know how something works, and why it works the way it does, and not some
other way. The personality of scientists comes in all "flavors" from the
quiet introvert like Albert Einstein, to the fun loving extrovert like
Richard Feynman. A scientist needs to know as much math as he or she can
get -- for two reasons: 1. A lot of science is expressed in terms of
mathematics, and 2. math gives the person mental discipline that is needed
to examine a problem. A scientist needs to know how to write!!! Surprised?
It does not matter how brilliant a research scientist is, if that person
cannot express her or his ideas coherently and clearly, those ideas will not
be communicated to others. A scientist has to be a skeptic. Always ask the
question, "Show me your data.". This does not mean that a scientist must be
cynical, but scientists must base their (or some other's) claims on some
sort of testable experimental information. This does not mean that a
scientist cannot speculate and ask "What if?" because that is where new ideas
come from. But the speculation, the guessing creative part of science, needs
to be clearly labels as such.
There is a long list of other qualifications that some scientists need to a
greater or lesser extent, but I believe these certainly belong on any list
of qualifications needed.
Well educated...need good math skills especially...etc.\
The most important qualification is to enjoy science. Many scientists are
very good at math, especially those in the physical sciences like chemistry
and physics. Scientists are usually good at figuring out how to solve
problems. Scientists need to know how to make decisions and how to organize
and perform experiments and record data. Of course, a scientist needs to
know how to write so that he/she can record information and share ideas with
other scientists. Because scientists may also give presentations to others,
public speaking skills also help. Being able to get along with other people
is also crucial, because scientists often work with other people, such as
other scientists, mathematicians, historians, writers, the general public,
teachers, reporters and students.
Big question. Lots of answers.
From the basic definition of scientist, Webster's "A person specializing in
science", it could be anyone who is interested in studying science.
Usually someone who wants to be a scientist has to decide what field he or
she would like to study. There are lots, Physics, Biology, Chemistry,
Geology, and more. All these sciences are broken down into other
specialties; molecular biology, astrophysics, hydrology for example. There
are a zillion to pick from. Most scientists go to college o get a degree in
their favorite science. Some work in labs trying to find cures for
sicknesses. Some try to discover how things are put together. Others are
making new things. Most scientists go on to get their Masters degree in
their special fields.
If you are interested in being a scientist, take as much science in school
as you can. If you are still interested in science when you go to college,
you can study more there. Eventually, you will find the kind of science you
like the best.
I hope I have answered your question.
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Update: June 2012