Career Options for Biology Majors
The career options for biology majors depend on their specialization area within the field, as well as whether or not they choose to pursue advanced studies after graduation. Biology can be divided into three major areas: cellular and molecular, organismal, and field biology. Within these branches are several sub-disciplines, including microbiology, botany, and zoology. Because biology is composed of many branches and sub-disciplines, career options for biology majors can vary greatly. Biologists specializing in microbiology may work in areas, such as biomedical research, medicine, or public health. Biologists specializing in zoology can find jobs in areas like animal behavior, botany, marine biology, and ecology. It is important to note that career options for biology majors also vary according to degree level.
A major in biology provides a broad education that is relevant to a wide range of careers. Here are some possible job titles for individuals who have earned a bachelor's degree in biology.
- Laboratory technician
- Environmental technicians
- Food and dairy quality control specialists
- Animal technician
- Environmental consultants
- Greenhouse curators.
Career Options for Graduates
A degree in biology can also serve as good preparation for a graduate degree in healthcare. For instance, after graduation, graduates may apply to medical school, veterinary school, dental school, physical therapy school, or pharmacy school. Biology majors can also apply to research-focused master's or Ph.D. programs if they want to pursue academic research and/or teaching careers. Those holding master's degrees or Ph.D.'s may have one of the following job titles:
- Research associate
- Research scientist
- Environmental scientist
- Biotechnology research scientist
- Postsecondary professor
Salaries of Biology Degree-Holders
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), veterinary technologists and technicians made a median salary of $32,490, while microbiologists earned a median annual income of $66,850 as of May 2015. The BLS also reported that during this time, postsecondary biology teachers earned a median salary of $76,650 and environmental scientists made a median wage of $68,910 per year, as of May 2015.
There are a wide range of job titles available for individuals who majored in biology, some of which require graduate-level study. Salary expectations vary based on the career.