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Biological Scientist Interview Questions

25 Biological Scientist Interview Questions
Question 1 of 25
Describe a difficult project and how you overcame it?
How to Answer
The interviewer wants to know how you approach, evaluate and resolve a work problem or complicated project. Telling the interviewer how you overcame the problematic project will show your problem-solving skill as well as prove that you are one that can take on responsibility.

Entry Level Example
"I recently had a challenging school project with a tight deadline. It was on a topic that I was not overly knowledgeable in. I decided to hire a tutor to help me through the outline creation and final edits. I will go the extra mile whenever necessary."
Experienced Example
"I have had many challenging projects in my eight years as a biological scientist. When I am faced with a task more challenging than usual, I will create a step by step plan and follow it to a tee. I call in reinforcements when needed and also have an industry mentor who I call upon from time to time."
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Question 2 of 25
How do you handle a larger than average workload?
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How to Answer
The interviewer wants to know that you can handle the workload required of you in this position and that you will not become overwhelmed if/when workloads unexpectedly increase. When workloads increase, stress levels do too. How do you react?

Answer Example
"When I have a large workload on my plate, I do not stress over the tasks that are in front of me. Rather, I make a simple plan of which tasks are a high priority and which tasks are a lower priority. The higher priority tasks, I complete first. Through this system, I can focus on my tasks individually, rather than stress out by the multitude of tasks ahead of me."
Entry Level Example
"Here are some suggestions on how to handle a large workload: - List your tasks and prioritize them - Think of which jobs add to the company's bottom line, and start there (Closest to the money!) - Exhale. Relax for a minute and collect yourself - Organize your tasks by which ones you can complete independently and which ones you need help with - Take sufficient breaks, so you do not exhaust yourself - Communicate your struggles with your leadership or team "
Experienced Example
"I first take a step back and make a list of all the deliverable work that I have. Then, I prioritize the list by deadline and ease of completion. I always try to hit the easy tasks first and get them off my to-do list. Feeling like I am making progress keeps me motivated."
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Question 3 of 25
What are your salary expectations for this biological scientist role?
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How to Answer
The best thing that you can do when asked about your salary expectations is to be open and honest about what you are currently earning, and where you want to be in the future.

Answer Example
"I can share with you what I am currently earning, and where I would like to be in my next position. Currently, I am earning a base salary of $78K plus an annual bonus opportunity of an additional 10%. Last year my earnings were $85K, and I'd like to earn a bit above that in my next position."
Entry Level Example
"As I am a recent graduate, I would like to be offered a fair salary that reflects my recent education. I am most concerned with joining an organization that will help me to grow my career in (industry). Compensation is not my primary driver."
Experienced Example
"I am currently making $100,000 per year with two bonus opportunities. I am looking for compensation that is aligned with the role and provides an opportunity for growth."
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Question 4 of 25
What questions do you have for me?
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How to Answer
It's always a great idea to have questions ready for the interviewer. Review the company website and other online resources to ensure the questions you are asking are not mundane, or redundant. The last thing an interviewer wants to hear is a list of questions you could have found the answers to from simply watching a video on their company site!

Answer Example
"I have been a fan of your company's projects and research for as long as I can remember and I am curious what the vision is for introducing your research to new markets?"
Entry Level Example
"Here are some sample questions: - When would you like to have this position filled? - How long has this role been vacant? - Is this a replacement search or a newly created role? - What is your favorite part of working here? - What is the company's primary goal for this position in the next 12 months? - Is there anything from my background and experience that I can clarify for you? - What do you see as the most significant change in this industry over the past three years? - Is there any reason why you would not hire me? "
Experienced Example
"Thank you for asking - I do have a few questions. What is top of mind when it comes to filling this role? Also, what types of career growth opportunities would follow this position? And lastly, do you have internal candidates who are also interviewing for this position?"
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Question 5 of 25
Have you ever broken a confidentiality agreement?
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Question 6 of 25
How will you earn the trust of your coworkers?
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Question 7 of 25
How do you encourage creative thinking with your fellow scientists?
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Question 8 of 25
What feedback did you receive from your most recent manager?
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Question 9 of 25
As a biological scientist, you will face a significant amount of diversity among your coworkers. Are you accustomed to this?
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Question 10 of 25
Tell me about a career related goal that you set and did not reach. How did you recover from the disappointment?
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Creators of Biological Scientist Answers and Questions

Heather Douglass
Heather Douglass has over 20 years experience recruiting and hiring candidates. She has a knack for resume writing. You can find her on twitter at @heatherinidaho.
Rachelle Enns
Rachelle Enns is an executive head-hunter and job search expert. Utilized by top executives from Fortune 100 & 500 companies like Fitbit, Microsoft, General Electric, Nestle, and more, she helps professionals position themselves in a competitive marketplace. Rachelle founded Renovate My Resume, a company that focuses on helping job seekers get their edge back. Renovate My Resume creates stand-out resumes, cover letters, LinkedIn profiles and professional summaries for new grads, all the way to corporate executives. Rachelle spends much of her time training career coaches, recruiters, and resume writers. She also holds interview workshops for students and interns, globally. For great tips and tricks, follow Rachelle on Instagram @_rachelle_e or @renovatemyresume.
First written on: 06/23/2013
Last modified on: 08/21/2018

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Question 11 of 25
When conducting scientific research, how often do you create alternative scenarios for potentially unexpected outcomes?
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Question 12 of 25
Do you prefer to work in the field, or in a lab setting?
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Question 13 of 25
How do you believe you will complement our department, if you were hired?
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Question 14 of 25
What is the most challenging part of supervising biological technicians and junior scientists?
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Question 15 of 25
Why have you chosen to specialize in (enter your specialty)?
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Question 16 of 25
Share an experience in which you presented to a group. What was the situation and how did it go?
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Question 17 of 25
What do you know about the study of wild animal populations?
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Question 18 of 25
What are your strengths as a biological scientist?
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Question 19 of 25
As a scientist, team communication is key to your success. What experience do you have using team-based messaging applications?
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Question 20 of 25
Tell me about yourself.
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Question 21 of 25
When you suffer a setback, how does that emotionally affect you and your work?
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Question 22 of 25
What was the biggest change you have had to deal with in your career?
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Question 23 of 25
Describe a time when you went above and beyond the requirements for a project.
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Question 24 of 25
Why should we hire you?
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Question 25 of 25
How do you handle stress and pressure?
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About Biological Scientist

August 17th, 2017

As a Biological Scientist you are a person who loves nature, plants, and animals and wants to study and understand how organisms live and act. Biochemists and biophysicists study the chemical and physical principles of living things and of biological processes such as cell development, growth, and heredity. Your research typically relates to finding a way to promote, cure, treat or improve plant and animal habitats. In the lab, you must be able to use tools like microscopes, cell counters or robotic equipment.

Education needed to be a successful Biological Scientist is a Bachelor's degree in a biological science for entry-level positions but most biological scientists hold master's degrees or doctorates in their field of specialization. Skills needed to be a Biological Scientist should be able to work independently or as part of a team and be able to communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing. If you choose private industry you may hold a management or administrative positions. Strong business and communication skills and being familiar with regulatory issues and marketing and management techniques will be an added bonus you can speak to during the interview. You must have patience and self-discipline to conduct long and detailed research projects.

To prepare for your interview you'll want to research the company that you are applying to. What projects are they currently working and how can you contribute to the outcome? Have the common interview answers ready to go for your interview: Tell us about yourself and strengths and weaknesses and what do you know about our company.


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