Is A Biology Degree Worth It? Even though you worry that you might become a mad scientist, you are considering declaring biology as one of your majors before the conclusion of your second year in college. You know deep down that you love science and would like to work in the STEM sector someday. However, you might be questioning the value of a biology degree.
For undergraduates who want to go to medical school or get a master’s in healthcare, biology is a good major. A bachelor’s degree in biology, however, can lead to a variety of job prospects due to the large number of majors offered. Hard Working students are suited for a degree in biology.
A biology degree might be a fantastic fit for anyone who has ever enjoyed science and considered turning it into a career. You will examine germs, people, animals, and plants as you investigate life and living things. Your path to a profession in environmental protection, agriculture, education, healthcare, or another industry may be aided by this degree.
You may decide to enter the workforce right away after earning your biology bachelor’s degree or continue your education at the master’s level.
What Is A Biology Major?
A degree in biology emphasizes living things including plants, animals, and bacteria. Students may focus on studying a certain specialty or the field as a whole. Students can prepare for a range of vocations in the scientific, environmental and medical domains by majoring in biology. They could also choose to work in laboratories and pursue careers as researchers.
Biology Majors’ Course Work
Although no two biology programs are the same, some might have comparable courses. You might take general biology classes or ones that concentrate on a particular subject, depending on the biology major you choose and the university you attend. Programs may also include courses in math and other sciences in addition to biology classes. Some programs may demand that students perform independent research, complete a lab internship, or study abroad in addition to their coursework.
If you’re a biology major, you can expect to take the following courses:
- Principles of molecular cell biology
- Principles of ecology and evolution
- Human anatomy and physiology
Biology Careers And Salaries
Biology majors can work in a range of scientific fields. Technician positions are frequently entry-level ones. You might help scientists with their fieldwork, laboratory work, or other responsibilities as a technician.
For technicians in food science, environmental protection, or agricultural science, formal schooling is frequently not necessary. While pursuing your biology degree online, you could very well be able to work in one of those roles.
Practicing as a biological technician after graduation may be a sensible next step. A bachelor’s degree is normally required for such a position. Studies in biology are important for many different scientific fields. Microbiologists, zoologists, and wildlife biologists are possible careers for biology majors.
Consider working as an environmental specialist if you are passionate about eliminating pollution. You might aid in solving crimes if you work in forensic science. Here are a few careers associated with the study of biology, together with their median incomes, as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
|Careers||Annual median salaries|
|Forensic Science Technicians||$61,930|
|High School Teachers||$61,820|
|Environmental Scientists and Specialists||$76,530|
|Zoologists and Wildlife Biologists||$64,650|
|Agricultural and Food Scientists||$74,160|
|Clinical Laboratory Technologists and Technicians||$57,800|
|Environmental Science and Protection Technicians||$47,370|
A biology bachelor’s degree could also help you become eligible for employment as an agricultural scientist or a food scientist. You could choose to focus on plant, animal, or soil science within the field of agricultural science.
Other scientific positions normally ask for at least a master’s degree, though hiring requirements differ amongst firms. An excellent example is working as an epidemiologist. The positions of biophysics, medical scientist, and biochemist also call for extensive education. After receiving your Bachelor’s degree in Biology, you might think about pursuing a master’s or doctoral degree to qualify for such positions.
Biology majors can consider teaching as an alternative to working as field scientists. Teachers of biological science are needed in middle and high schools. A degree and a state teaching certificate are typically required for teaching positions. If you decide to further your study, you might consider switching to teaching college biology.
General Requirements For A Biology Degree
Students who enjoy nature, plants, and animals are frequently drawn to biology as their first area of study. You’ll spend a lot of time investigating and discovering behaviors and the life that accompanies them. You shouldn’t be intimidated by working with animals or in the field. Additionally, you will have the chance to use sophisticated scientific equipment like microscopes.
While biology is an intriguing and stimulating subject, it can also involve spending a lot of time in the lab completing monotonous chores. Your coursework will consist largely of math and science. Don’t neglect English just because science is your first love. Writing clearly about scientific concepts is a crucial ability that can set you apart from other candidates.
For this major, collaboration with others is crucial. You will frequently collaborate with a lab partner and in study groups. You’ll need acute recall and critical thinking skills to succeed. Students must take meticulous notes about their experiments and accurately document the results.
Program Entry Requirements For Biology
Most biology degree programs normally demand a high school diploma or its equivalent and depending on the school, many applicants will also need to have a minimum GPA and SAT/ACT score. To work in some biology fields, you might need additional certification in addition to any of these fundamental requirements from the standard biology program.
Different Biology Majors
The following are some examples of biology majors:
- General Biology
A general major enables you to build a foundation in biology by studying a range of subjects without concentrating on any one field. This can be a good strategy if you’re enthusiastic about biology but aren’t sure what job path you want to take after graduation because it gives you the chance to explore a variety of specialties and occupations.
Since it might offer the required courses you need to be admitted to a master’s program, a general biology major may also be a useful choice if you’re interested in obtaining a doctorate in biology or a related topic. Additionally, if you want to work as a high school teacher, it can be a beneficial degree.
Students majoring in microbiology often learn about microscopic creatures like bacteria and viruses. They might research contagious diseases or learn about campaigns for public health. Coursework for this degree may include topics in genetics, immunology, organic and inorganic chemistry, and other sciences. A microbiology degree can help you become ready for a career as a public health officer or lab researcher. To reach your career goals, it may be required to obtain a master’s or Ph.D. in microbiology since employers in this field occasionally demand advanced degrees from applicants.
Students majoring in zoology learn about animals and the ecosystems they live in. You can complete the prerequisite coursework for a graduate degree, such as a master’s or doctorate, by majoring in zoology. You can work as an animal researcher or directly engage with animals by working in a zoo after earning a master’s or doctorate in zoology. A zoology bachelor’s or undergraduate degree could also qualify you for a profession as an animal nutritionist or veterinarian.
- Molecular Biology Or Biochemistry
If molecular biology or biochemistry is your chosen field of study, your coursework may concentrate on life as it exists at the cellular level, like how chemical processes occurring within cells might impact how an organism functions. A career in sales or management for a pharmaceutical company is possible with a bachelor’s degree in this field. As an alternative, you can choose to continue your study and earn a graduate degree in molecular biology so that you can work as a scientist and carry out biochemical research.
- Pre-Medical Courses
Premed programs, like general biology, give students a broad overview of biological concepts while equipping them for careers in the medical field. The prerequisite classes for medical school, like chemistry, cell biology, anatomy and physiology, arithmetic, and physics, are frequently included in this major. You can also think about a career as a respiratory therapist, sonographer, or emergency medical technician if you have a degree in pre-medical studies.
- Ecology And Evolutionary Biology
Taking courses in ecology or evolutionary biology can be the best option for you if you’re interested in the environment and sustainable science. The study of large-scale creatures is frequently covered in the coursework for ecology and evolutionary biology majors. Additionally, you might study the effects of particular chemicals on various habitat types as well as how plants and animals interact. This education can help you pursue a job as a soil technician, science journalist, or environmental planner.
Is A Biology Degree Worth It?
For many students, a biology degree is valuable. Over the next ten years, science employment is expected to rise at an average pace of 8%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Even more rapidly growing jobs in biology include epidemiologists (30%), forensic science technicians (16%), animal scientists (10%), soil and plant scientists (10%), and zoologists (10%). Numerous subfields make up biology. You can enroll in classes in college that focus on conservation, bacteria, animals, and plants.
You might pursue a variety of job paths after graduating college because you had the opportunity to study so many different subjects. Working in labs, classrooms, or the vast outdoors is a possible alternative.
What Jobs Are Available for Biology Majors?
According to Bureau of Labor Statistics data, biological technologists are employed by a variety of industries. Universities, government entities, hospitals, and pharmaceutical corporations are the most frequent employers.
Numerous scientists work for academic institutions or governmental organizations, including zoologists, microbiologists, and environmental experts. Consulting and engineering organizations could be additional options for employment. Graduates in biology who choose teaching careers might work as teachers in elementary, secondary, or postsecondary institutions, depending on their level of education.
What Can You Do With A Biology Degree
Biology, which is the study of living things, is a broad field with numerous employment options. Numerous biology-related occupations are available in academics, editing and writing lab research, healthcare, and pharmaceuticals. It could be necessary to continue your education after receiving your four-year degree, depending on your chosen position and professional path.
Here are several careers with biology degrees that range in income potential from the lowest to the highest.
- High School Science Teacher
Primary responsibilities include teaching biology basics to high school pupils. Teachers in high school often have great organizational, time-management, and communication skills and work with students from grades 9 through 12. High school teachers frequently have to prepare lesson plans, deliver lectures, respond to inquiries, give homework assignments, and grade exam materials daily.
Education requirements: A bachelor’s degree is necessary for biology teachers in high schools, and most public schools also demand state-issued certification or license.
- Environmental Scientist Or Specialist
An environmental scientist’s main responsibilities include creating technologies to safeguard ecosystems or the environment at large. A climate or environmental scientist could also serve as a consultant for advice on public policy.
Education required: You can find entry-level employment in the field of environmental science with a biology bachelor’s degree. To develop their careers more swiftly, many professionals opt to complete graduate-level studies in environmental science.
- Food Scientist
Food scientists’ main responsibility is to develop food additives that increase food safety and storage efficiency. To assure product quality, food scientists frequently test items in laboratories and evaluate data. These scientists frequently collaborate with governmental organizations, food producers, and academic research centers.
Education requirements: A bachelor’s degree from an authorized institution or university is frequently needed for employment as a food scientist. Many people acquire postgraduate degrees to specialize and develop their careers.
- Health Educator
The main responsibilities of a health educator are to inform the public about health and wellness by using their expertise in areas such as exercise, diet, and disease. Health educators are frequently tasked with gathering information, researching various health issues, and developing educational materials and practical training programs. In contexts like public health institutions, community centers, educational institutions, and even private organizations, health educators frequently use their communication and leadership skills to simplify difficult information.
The minimum educational requirements for health educators are a bachelor’s degree. The Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) certification may also be necessary for some employers.
- Biological Technician Or Research Assistant
Primary responsibilities: For biologists or medical professionals, biological research assistants gather and prepare biological samples including blood, food, and microorganisms. Additionally, biological technicians help scientists with additional laboratory duties like equipment upkeep, research findings documentation, and fieldwork.
BS in Biology vs BA in Biology
The bachelor’s degree in biology is often offered as a Bachelor of Science (BS), while some institutions also offer it as a Bachelor of Arts (BA).
|BS in Biology||BA in Biology|
|Largely focuses on the natural sciencesPossibly preparing pupils for careers in medicine or dentistryMore targeted for individuals who desire to pursue careers in scientific research||Includes more courses from different disciplinesInclude electives, which help prepare for a variety of graduate school tracksDesigned for career pathways that span different academic fields, such as bioengineering law or biology education|
Obtaining A Biology Bachelor’s Degree Online
There are many specialized areas in biology that can be explored. You can follow your passion by receiving a biology degree, regardless of whether cells, animals, bacteria, or ecosystems most appeal to you.
In their roles as scientists, lab technicians, or instructors, experts in this field frequently advance scientific knowledge and discoveries. Regardless of where this course of study may lead you in the future, you can consider beginning your academic career with an online college degree.
The option to receive a thorough, reliable education online in a flexible way is provided by several approved schools. If you’re prepared for a thorough science education, you can look into reputable online biology programs right now.
Is A Degree In Biology Worth It? Consider investing in a biology degree if you’re curious to learn more about plants, animals, and their habitats. Students may study micro or macro-level organisms depending on their institution or university. You can decide if a biology degree is worth it by knowing what you might learn in a biology school.
Even if a career in biology can be found with merely a bachelor’s degree, the truth is that there is always still more to learn as science and technology advance. Anyone who wants to work in research in academia, business, or government labs, in particular, needs an advanced degree. But in fields other than academia and research, higher degrees are equally important. Advanced degrees are typically required for forestry professionals, forensic scientists, environmental scientists, and microbiologists.
This article defines this major, explains the kinds of biology majors, and identifies the coursework biology students frequently take. The benefit of earning a biology degree is that you will always have possibilities for your profession.
Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)
Is Getting A Biology Degree Worth It?
- For undergraduates who want to go to medical school or get a master’s in healthcare, biology is a good major. A bachelor’s degree in biology, however, can lead to a variety of job prospects due to the large number of majors offered. Hard Working pupils are suited for a degree in biology.
How Do You Know If Biology Is Right For You?
- You adore the natural world, creatures, and vegetation.
The study of animals, plants, and nature, animals are called biology (oh and also humans). Therefore, it’s a terrific indication that Biology would be a good fit for you if you have a natural curiosity or aptitude toward these things.
Is BA in biology worse than BS?
- A bachelor of arts in the sciences is more diverse than a BS since it enables students to focus on their major while also exploring a wider range of topics. As a result, a biology BA combines fundamental science courses with the chance for additional optional study in subjects like languages, history, and philosophy.
You can also read, “Is An Accounting Degree Worth It In 2023?”