How to Write a Researcher Cover Letter (Plus Example)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published June 19, 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

A cover letter is an important document accompanying your resume when applying for a research position. A cover letter for a researcher job usually summarizes your research experience and skills. Learning how to write one is important because it is your opportunity to make a good first impression on the research hiring committee. In this article, we discuss who is a researcher, how to write a cover letter for a researcher job, skills to add to it, and some tips to make your application stand out.

Related: How To Become a Medical Researcher (And Salary Expectations)

How to write a researcher cover letter

When writing a researcher cover letter, it's important to focus on your ability to conduct research and find information. Follow this step by step guide to write a research cover letter:

1. Introduce yourself

Start your cover letter by introducing yourself with your full name and contact information. You can also add your website if you have one. It's important to include your contact information so that the employer can easily get in touch with you.

2. Add professional greetings

Once you have introduced yourself, add a professional greeting such as "Dear Mr. or Mrs. Smith." You can also use "To whom it may concern" if you don't know the person's name who can be reading your cover letter. Adding a professional greeting shows that you are polite and have manners.

3. State your purpose

After the greeting, state your purpose for writing the cover letter. For example, mention that you are applying for the researcher position and why you are the ideal candidate. It's important to be specific about what position you're applying for so that the employer knows that you are interested in the job.

4. State your research objectives

It's important to state your research objectives in your cover letter to give an idea of what you hope to achieve through your research. Be specific about the goals of your study and why you're conducting it. This shows that you're well-prepared and have a clear plan for your research.

5. Explain your research experience

In the next section, explain your previous research experience so that the employer can see your capabilities. If you have conducted any especially relevant or impressive research projects, mention them here. You can also include any relevant coursework you've taken. If you have worked as a researcher before, mention where and what research you did. You can also explain your methods of research and why they are effective.

6. Highlight your research skills

After explaining your research experience, highlight the specific research skills that make you a good fit for the job. These might include data analysis, literature reviews, conducting experiments, or using research software. If you have any unique or valuable skills, mention them here.

7. Conclude your cover letter

End your cover letter by thanking the employer for their time and consideration. You can also mention that you look forward to hearing from them soon. Finally, sign your cover letter with your full name.

Skills to add to your cover letter

Some skills that you can add to your researcher's cover letter include:

Research skills

Highlighting your research skills in your cover letter is important for getting a job as a researcher. Be sure to mention any specific skills you have, such as data analysis, literature reviews, conducting experiments, or using research software. You can also mention how you can apply these skills to the job.

Communication skills

As a researcher, excellent communication skills are important for explaining your research and findings to others. Be sure to mention your written and verbal communication skills in your cover letter so that the employer knows that you can effectively communicate your research. You can highlight how you can explain complex information clearly and concisely.

Organizational skills

Researchers stay organized by keeping track of their data, results, and findings. Be sure to mention your organizational skills in your cover letter so that the employer knows you can keep track of your work. You can also cite how you can stay organized when working on multiple projects simultaneously.

Problem-solving skills

As a researcher, you often encounter problems that need solutions. By mentioning your problem-solving skills in your cover letter, you can show the employer that you are capable of finding solutions to problems. You can highlight a time when you encountered a problem and how you were able to solve it.

Time management skills

Researchers manage their time by planning and scheduling their work. They also know how to prioritize their work to get the most important tasks done first. By mentioning your time management skills in your cover letter, you can show the employer that you can manage your time effectively. You can also include how you plan and schedule your work to get things done efficiently.

Numeracy skills

As a researcher, you often deal with numbers and data, so it's important to have strong numeracy skills. This skill helps you to understand and analyze data quickly. You can also mention how you use numeracy skills in your work and how they help you find trends and relationships in data.

Critical thinking skills

Critical thinking is an important skill for all researchers, as it helps you to sift through information and make sound judgments. It also allows you to see different sides of an issue and to think objectively. By mentioning your critical thinking skills in your cover letter, you can show the employer that you can think critically about information.

Related: 11 Skills To Include in Your Cover Letter

Tips for writing a researcher's cover letter

Here are some tips to keep in mind when writing a researcher's cover letter:

Format it correctly

Your cover letter represents you and your professional achievements, so it's important to format it correctly. Write it professionally and concisely, and be sure to proofread it for any grammar or spelling errors. Make sure to use the correct font size, spacing, and margins. You can use a cover letter template to help you format your cover letter correctly.

Tailor it to the position

When you are applying for a specific researcher position, tailor it according to the job description. Mention how your skills and experience match the job requirements to show the employer that you're a good fit. This can help you stand out from other candidates who have applied for the same job.

Highlight your achievements

In your cover letter, highlight your most significant achievements to give the employer an idea of your skills and abilities. For example, you can mention awards you've won, papers you've published, or any other relevant achievements to the position you want to apply for the job. Plus, you can also mention how your accomplishments can benefit the employer.

Use persuasive language

Persuasive language can help convince the employer that you are the best candidate. Use compelling words and phrases such as "I'm confident that I can..." or "I'm certain that I can be a valuable asset to your team." This can help create a strong case for why they might hire you for the job.

Related: 12 Tips for Crafting a Great Cover Letter

Cover Letter Template

[First name] [Last name], [Degree or certification if applicable]

[Phone number] | [Email address] | [City], [Province] [Postal code]

[Date]

[Company name]

Option 1

Dear [Hiring manager's first name] [Hiring manager's last name]

Option 2

Dear hiring manager,

[Express excitement for the position, including the role title and the company name]. [Introduce yourself by explaining why you're applying for the job and how the job aligns with your career goals, and what specifically draws you to the company].

[Explain your relevant experience and qualifications without repeating what's in your resume]. [Highlight one to two relevant achievements with facts and data when possible.] [Explain why you'd be a good fit for the company]. [Optional - address employment gap or career transition].

[Express gratitude]. [Summarize qualification]. [Restate interest in role]. [Call to action + availability and preferred contact method]

[Complimentary close],

[Signature]

Example of researcher's cover letter

Here's an example of a researcher's cover letter:

Anna Paul

555-555-1212, annapaul@email.com, Toronto, Ontario, M4Y 2K1

Dear hiring manager,

I'm writing to apply for the researcher position at your company. I'm confident that I'm the ideal candidate for the job because of my excellent research skills and experience.

I have a strong track record of conducting successful research projects. I have experience with all aspects of the research process, from planning and designing studies to collecting and analyzing data. My research skills are top-notch, and I'm confident that I can contribute to your company's success. In addition to my research experience, I have also taken several relevant courses. I have a Bachelor's degree in Psychology, and I'm currently pursuing my master's degree in research methods. My coursework has provided me with the skills and knowledge necessary to conduct successful research projects.

I'm excited to apply my research skills to help your company achieve its goals. Therefore, I can confidentially say that I'm the best candidate for the job and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Sincerely,

Anna Paul

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