The study of biological science is the study and study of life. It is one of the broadest subjects that you can study. Biology covers everything, from the molecular study and analysis of life processes to the study of animal communities and plant communities.
Continue reading to learn more about the potential places your biology degree can take you. Also, download our guide on How to Find a Job After University.
What can you do with your biology degree?
As you might expect, biology degrees can lead to many different career options. A biology degree can lead to these careers:
- Research scientist
- Conservation officer
- Forensic scientist
- Roles of government agencies
- Science writer
Biology careers allow you to study living organisms and help to develop biological knowledge and understanding for a variety of purposes. These include treatment of diseases and maintaining the natural environment.
Many biology graduates opt to continue their education at postgraduate level in a related field or specialization to enhance their skills and advance their careers. However, this is often not necessary.
Continue reading to learn more about the variety of biology careers that are available for undergraduates as well as postgraduates.
A biology degree can lead to a variety of jobs.
Research in biology is a career option
Research is an important part of society, but it’s also a stimulating career choice for biology students. Research biologists are able to gain knowledge about the world by studying living organisms. Research is the most versatile career option for a biology major, since it can be done across all specializations.
Research in the medical and life sciences is most common. This includes areas like health and disease and neurology. Researchers are essential to the development of societal knowledge in many areas. They can be found in academia, hospitals, medical facilities, and research institutes as well as within industry and business.
Healthcare careers for biology majors
As a healthcare biologist, you will be responsible for developing campaigns to treat and cure diseases such as AIDS and tuberculosis. Many roles are not available to students with only a bachelor’s degree, such as doctors and practitioners roles. However, the sector has a large hiring pool and biologists are highly sought-after in medicine.
With the right qualifications and experience, healthcare biologists can also be doctors, nurses and dentists. They are not only employed in hospitals and other medical facilities, but are also hired by organizations like the Peace Corps to provide advanced healthcare to war-torn areas.
Careers in biology for environmental conservation
You’ll be an environmental biologist if you are interested in solving environmental problems, protecting natural resources, and maintaining the sustainability of animal and plant wildlife for future generations. This remit includes marine and/or aqua biologist, conservation biologist as well as ecologist and manager of the environment. These roles involve biologists who work with endangered species to recover them and educate the public. These industries include not-for-profit and charitable organizations, government and the private sector, and ecological consultancies.
Education in biology
You will be able to work in education with a degree in biology and teaching qualifications. It will be a pleasure to work with children and encourage them to explore the world. Higher up the education ladder, the more qualifications you will need. For example, a university lecturer may need a master’s or PhD while primary or secondary school teachers will typically only require an undergraduate degree and a teacher-training qualification. You may be able publish your research, do your own research and/or join an advisory board if you choose to continue your education.
A biology degree is less common than other careers.
You will be able to transfer your biology skills into any industry, regardless of whether it is in science or not.
Here are some less common careers that you can pursue after obtaining a biology degree.
Careers in biotechnology
Biotechnology refers to the application of scientific principles to improve technology in a variety of industries, including the consumer goods and technology markets. Biotechnologists are involved in genetic engineering, drug development, and the advancement of medical technologies like nanotechnology.
Forensic science careers
You will be working in the legal sector alongside police officers or law enforcement agencies to process and test evidence collected in criminal investigations. There are many areas of expertise for forensic scientists, including forensic odontology (dental evidence), and forensic anthropology. These areas include the examination of human decomposition, crime scene examination, and medical examiner positions (which require further study).
Government and policy careers
Government jobs in biology will require you to work closely with policy-makers and government officials in order to advise and create legislation on growing topics like biomedical research or environmental regulation. You will ensure that legal changes are based on sound science. As a political advisor to scientific agencies and not-for-profit organizations, you can work at the national or regional level. You can also serve as a representative of a political group or committee.
Business and industry careers
The pharmaceutical industry is multi-billion-dollar and requires biologists to research, develop and test new products. Biologists could also find jobs in marketing, sales, and public relations, as well as in scientific services companies.
Careers in economics
You might consider a career as a biological economist if you are a good student of numbers. You will need to work in government or other organizations to study the economic effects of biological problems on society. This includes issues such as extinction, deforestation, and pollution. Similar roles include those in socioeconomics, which focuses on people, and environmental economics that focuses on conserving natural capital. Ecological economics focuses on the link between natural ecosystems with human economies.
Science publishing and science communication careers
Finally, what are the possibilities for a biology degree that you also have an interest in media and journalism? It might surprise you to learn that journalism and media careers are very diverse with a biology degree. You might be interested in journalism or publishing. Your biology degree can help you become a science writer, or work on a magazine, website, TV show, or newspaper. These roles will allow you to educate and inform the public about current biological issues.