What Do I Need To Consider Before Pursuing a Career as a Marine Biologist?
If you have an interest in the ocean and in science, marine biology could be a great potential career. There are a number of different specializations in the field offering a variety of opportunities to study all manner of marine life. But, while many of us love the ocean and aquatic life, how can you be sure that becoming a marine biologist is right for you? Review the following quiz to see if your interests and qualifications match up.
How many of the following apply to you?
|Do you have an affinity for a variety of sciences and math?||Yes or No|
|Are you tech-savvy?||Yes or No|
|Do you have analytical problem-solving skills?||Yes or No|
|Are you willing to pursue several years of post-graduate study?||Yes or No|
|Are you a creative thinker?||Yes or No|
|Are you open water certified?||Yes or No|
|Have you gained any experience in the field?||Yes or No|
|Have you explored numerous career possibilities in marine biology?||Yes or No|
|Can you take initiative?||Yes or No|
|Are you willing to travel and/or relocate for your work?||Yes or No|
Why Are These Qualifications Important for Marine Biologists?
Do you have an affinity for a variety of sciences and math?
Marine biology is an interdisciplinary field, and the coursework of a marine biology major will often involve not only biology courses but other sciences, such as chemistry, as well.
Are you tech-savvy?
Marine biologists need to have technical know-how to operate the equipment necessary to their work.
Do you have analytical problem-solving skills?
The ability to think and solve problems analytically is important to all scientists.
Are you willing to pursue several years of post-graduate study?
For many careers in marine biology, a master's degree may be the minimum requirement. Those looking to become research scientists leading their own projects will almost always need to possess doctorates.
Are you a creative thinker?
As a marine biologist, you may one day be leading your own expeditions and devising experiments to test your hypotheses. You'll need creativity as a scientist to gain new knowledge.
Are you open water certified?
If you aren't, you will most likely need to be able to earn this certification to pursue your career goals in the field. You may also need to take courses related to scientific diving.
Have you gained any experience in the field?
Getting your feet wet--pun intended--is an essential first step for high school and college students considering majoring in marine biology. By pursuing internships and volunteer opportunities at aquariums or on research projects, you will gain valuable knowledge and perhaps uncover an area that you are interested in specializing in.
Have you explored numerous career possibilities in marine biology?
The field of marine biology can be competitive, and there may be a real shortage in the number of possible jobs for the particular career you are interested in. Be sure to keep an open mind and examine all possibilities; you may find a new interest you didn't know you had.
Can you take initiative?
Your work as a marine biologist may involve pursuing grants, developing projects, and charting a course for future study. You need to have genuine passion and drive to pursue your goals in this field.
Are you willing to travel and/or relocate for your work?
In this competitive field, you may find that you need to relocate to find your dream job. Frequent travel to take part in different expeditions may also be necessary.
Is Marine Biology For You?
If you found yourself answering in the affirmative to many of these questions, you may very well be on the right track to a future in marine biology. Marine biologists may find employment with government and nongovernment agencies and with research institutions among various other outlets.