Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

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M_Law

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Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby M_Law » Fri Mar 24, 2017 2:00 am

I am just curious if some people can share their hourly pay rates for Research Assistant positions with a law professor.

And I am fully aware it's not much lol. Thanks all!

runinthefront

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby runinthefront » Fri Mar 24, 2017 2:44 am

At Cornell I believe the standard rate is $15-16/hr, and it's uniform across professors. I may be wrong, though.
Last edited by runinthefront on Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

cavalier1138

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby cavalier1138 » Fri Mar 24, 2017 6:40 am

Pretty damn low.

The only circumstances that make being an RA a good idea are being really interested in the subject area or working with a professor who will be a good resource for job/clerking connections. Preferably both.

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Slytherpuff

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby Slytherpuff » Sat Mar 25, 2017 11:46 am

It's only $12/hour at my school but the (practically) automatic recommendation from a professor is pretty nice!

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Mr. Blackacre

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby Mr. Blackacre » Mon Apr 03, 2017 8:51 pm

Georgetown's is $16.90/hour (why .9? No one knows). Woop woop.

Edit: I think profs. also have discretion to go higher. I know at least one prof goes up to $30/hour for complex/arcane research stuff.

acr

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby acr » Mon Apr 03, 2017 8:58 pm

Hearsay, but WUSTL's is $8/hr. Seems pretty low.

lawlorbust

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby lawlorbust » Mon Apr 03, 2017 8:58 pm

HLS = $11.5

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NCGuy

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby NCGuy » Mon Apr 03, 2017 9:37 pm

$10-12 per hour seems standard.

I'd take it, even if the pay isn't what you want. I landed my post-graduation job in large part because of my RA experience.
Last edited by NCGuy on Sat Jan 27, 2018 11:06 am, edited 1 time in total.

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UVA2B

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby UVA2B » Mon Apr 03, 2017 9:39 pm

You rarely do an RA job for the experience and career building: you do it because it pays pittances and ensures you don't have to pay multiple rents over the summer.

acr

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby acr » Mon Apr 03, 2017 9:44 pm

Maybe I should make a different thread for this but I'll just ask here. How do you go about setting up an RA position with a professor? I will be in my school's market over the summer and would like to do 10-20 hours of research for the money and resume line. Do I have to wait for a school posting, or is it common to contact the professor (who you're on decently good terms with) to set something up?

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UVA2B

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby UVA2B » Mon Apr 03, 2017 9:54 pm

acr wrote:Maybe I should make a different thread for this but I'll just ask here. How do you go about setting up an RA position with a professor? I will be in my school's market over the summer and would like to do 10-20 hours of research for the money and resume line. Do I have to wait for a school posting, or is it common to contact the professor (who you're on decently good terms with) to set something up?


Reach out, they'll probably happily take you on. I know of several people who asked a prof, got a job, and spurred them to reach out for more RAs because it hadn't crossed their mind yet that it's that time of year.

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Nonconsecutive

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby Nonconsecutive » Mon Apr 03, 2017 10:27 pm

UVA2B wrote:
acr wrote:Maybe I should make a different thread for this but I'll just ask here. How do you go about setting up an RA position with a professor? I will be in my school's market over the summer and would like to do 10-20 hours of research for the money and resume line. Do I have to wait for a school posting, or is it common to contact the professor (who you're on decently good terms with) to set something up?


Reach out, they'll probably happily take you on. I know of several people who asked a prof, got a job, and spurred them to reach out for more RAs because it hadn't crossed their mind yet that it's that time of year.


Just as a personal anecdote in agreement with this - I've had two RA positions, one for the first half of 2L, and one that has lasted all of 3L. Neither of these were posted, I simply asked the professors if they had any work. The year long professor I hadn't even had a class or any real interaction with, but I had a good reason for wanting to work in their topic area.

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby cavalier1138 » Tue Apr 04, 2017 5:58 am

UVA2B wrote:You rarely do an RA job for the experience and career building


I strongly disagree with this. Working for a well-regarded academic in a specific field gives you a big talking point at interviews, and more importantly, it gives you a letter-writer for clerkships, etc. down the line. Most (good) professors treat recommending their RAs and generally helping their RAs with career matters as an inherent part of the relationship.

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UVA2B

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby UVA2B » Tue Apr 04, 2017 7:11 am

cavalier1138 wrote:
UVA2B wrote:You rarely do an RA job for the experience and career building


I strongly disagree with this. Working for a well-regarded academic in a specific field gives you a big talking point at interviews, and more importantly, it gives you a letter-writer for clerkships, etc. down the line. Most (good) professors treat recommending their RAs and generally helping their RAs with career matters as an inherent part of the relationship.


I mean, that's totally fair, but it's also what I meant by rarely. RA is a solid gig if you're building a specific career narrative, are looking to leverage into a clerkship, or some mixture of the two. And I was assuming this was a summer 1L RA job*, not one done during 2L or beyond. RA jobs are a good option for some during 1L summer, but most would be better off doing something slightly less academic, particularly if they have less otherwise substantive work experience.

You can strongly disagree with my generalized premise if you want, but I stand by an RA gig not being the best move in most cases for 1L summer. The same absolutely doesn't apply for during the 2L and 3L year, but that's for the reasons you mentioned, not because it's better than other alternatives.

ETA*: and I was assuming this was their only summer employment. Doing it as a side hustle also changes it quite a bit

M_Law

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby M_Law » Tue Apr 04, 2017 2:35 pm

UVA2B wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:
UVA2B wrote:You rarely do an RA job for the experience and career building


I strongly disagree with this. Working for a well-regarded academic in a specific field gives you a big talking point at interviews, and more importantly, it gives you a letter-writer for clerkships, etc. down the line. Most (good) professors treat recommending their RAs and generally helping their RAs with career matters as an inherent part of the relationship.


I mean, that's totally fair, but it's also what I meant by rarely. RA is a solid gig if you're building a specific career narrative, are looking to leverage into a clerkship, or some mixture of the two. And I was assuming this was a summer 1L RA job*, not one done during 2L or beyond. RA jobs are a good option for some during 1L summer, but most would be better off doing something slightly less academic, particularly if they have less otherwise substantive work experience.

You can strongly disagree with my generalized premise if you want, but I stand by an RA gig not being the best move in most cases for 1L summer. The same absolutely doesn't apply for during the 2L and 3L year, but that's for the reasons you mentioned, not because it's better than other alternatives.

ETA*: and I was assuming this was their only summer employment. Doing it as a side hustle also changes it quite a bit


Original Poster here. The RA position is merely for extra cash/easy work through the course of 2L summer (already have a paid summer gig) and into at least 3L fall, and perhaps beyond. I was just wondering about standard pay rates, but at least it's not less than minimum wage for law students.

Thanks for everybody's input and responses.

BlackRBG

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Re: Pay Rate for Research Assistant Positions

Postby BlackRBG » Tue Apr 18, 2017 8:18 pm

$14/hr at Boston U



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