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Getting started in Biology

What are the first few steps I should take to start working in Biology.

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Raghdaa’s Answer

Hi Ethan!
If you're interested in a career as a scientist, or you're interested in Biology, here are some suggestions:

1. Figure out what kind of biology you are interested in studying. There are many different specializations:
- Molecular & Cellular Biology
- Biochemistry
- Microbiology
- Genetics or Computational Genomics
- Anatomy & Physiology
- Neurobiology
- Immunology or Pathobiology
- Marine Biology or Zoology
- Ecology or Environmental Biology
- Biomedical Engineering
Start by looking into the different fields, maybe watch a YouTube video about each field, or read a few articles.

2. Once you know what kind of Biology you are interested in, go to undergraduate college and major in that field.

3. Look for extra-curricular activities that will help boost your resume. Join an organization on campus that focuses on specific specialization you are interested in.

4. Apply for research positions available on campus in the Biology labs. You will need to develop good professional relationships with the professors that run the labs, by taking their classes, going to office hours, etc. This will help you stand out when they are looking to take on new research assistants.

5. If you wish to work in applied research or teach at a high school level, a postgraduate degree in biology is required. This is typically a Master's degree.
In this case, you would start studying for the GRE. This is similar to the SATs or ACTs except you take it in college to get accepted to grad school.

6. Start looking into which graduate schools you would like to attend. While in college, you will figure out what you are interested in and what you don't like, and this will help you find a graduate school that offers the specialization you are interested in. This can be a more specific area of the Biology specialization, or you would go get a Master's in Education to be able to teach high school.

7. While you are in graduate school, utilize networking available and school resources to find openings. Make sure to get referrals through networking or recommendations from your professors when looking for scientist jobs available in the area you would like to work.

Hope this helps!

Raghdaa recommends the following next steps:

If you want to undertake independent research or teach at a university level, then you will need to obtain your PhD in biology.
If you would like to obtain your PhD, you would need to apply to PhD graduate programs when looking into which graduate schools to apply to.
After completing your PhD program, you would look for post-doc positions at research universities.
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Oksana Ksenia’s Answer

While biology in itself is fascinating and also very challenging branch of science to study, you certainly can take steps in high school to prepare. You need to start by taking courses in mathematics (precalculus, calculus and higher, statistics) as well as AP in chemistry, biology if available, AP in physics. It helps if your grades are good enough to get into program of your choice and you need to maintain both grades and gain knowledge as you go. You will be required to take General Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, General Physics 1 and 2, variety of courses in biology up until your graduation. Then you will proceed into master's program, leading to your PhD program.
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