Types of Human Test Subject Jobs

Updated July 19, 2017

If you are unemployed or you are simply seeking to bolster your current income, you may be able to find temporary employment by taking on a variety of human test-subject jobs. In many psychological and sociological studies as well as scientific trials, experimenters need a constant influx of human test subjects to further their studies, and these human test subjects are often well-compensated for their time.


Human test subjects help researchers to more fully understand the effects of their research on the human mind and body. For instance, while drug researchers can test their drugs on rats or other animal test subjects, before they can actually put the drug out onto the market it is important that they run a drug trial with human test subjects to verify that they will see the same results in human beings that they do in animal test subjects.


The jobs available to someone who is interested in working as a human test subject vary in type and in scope. Nearly all trials that require human test subjects involve human health in one way or another. Psychological trials and drug trials are especially common.

Time Frame

The amount of time that you will spend working as a human guinea pig will vary from trial to trial. Some psychological trials may consist of a single brain scan, while in-depth drug trials can run for several months. You should be aware of the nature of your time commitment before you sign up for a human guinea pig job.


Trials requiring human test subjects can be found all across the nation and the world. These trials will generally be based at a college, university, hospital or institutions where new studies are undertaken all the time. Check with the universities and hospitals in your area to see if there are any ongoing studies that you may be eligible for.


While working as a human test subject can be lucrative (according to Adil Shamoo, who works as a chairman at an organisation that oversees human research, some studies pay up to £6,500), it also comes with certain dangers. Because of the experimental nature of the tests and procedures being tried out on pharmaceutical trial subjects means that at times they have catastrophic and irreversible health impacts. Before you sign up to work as a human test subject for any test you should inquire about the nature of the trial and any possible side effects. It is important to weigh the salary against the possible ill effects that may result from your stint as a human guinea pig.

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