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What are some biology-related majors?

I took a biology class coming into high school and after taking physical science I realized I liked it. I wanted to know some majors that kinda deal with or are related to biology but not a nurse or doctor. (I hope that makes sense)

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Doc’s Answer

Graduating with a degree in biology La'Kayla is going to open up a variety of career opportunities for you. If you are someone that loves to learn about living things and enjoys science in general, then check out these five amazing careers I've outlined below.

BIOCHEMIST
Biochemists study biological processes, both the chemical and physical components. You'd perform lab work and research, manage lab staff and processes, and publish their findings. Typical work may involve isolating and analyzing certain fats or proteins, using advanced technologies to develop new drugs. They command a very high salary on average – just under six figures. You'll also likely need an advanced degree to land a job and will certainly need one to advance further in your career. In addition you'll also need a strong understanding of chemistry along with biology.

GENETIC COUNSELING
If you have an interest in counseling or helping others in addition to the biological sciences, the career of a genetic counselor might be a good option. Genetic counseling is a profession that has grown significantly in recent years as a greater scientific understanding of the human genome has allowed people to understand their individual genetics. Like most counselors, genetic counselors have to enjoy working with people and be highly empathetic, as they often must guide clients who have just received devastating medical news. They also must have a strong understanding of the science behind human genetics.

WILDLIFE BIOLOGIST/ZOOLOGIST
If you love animals may want to consider a career as a wildlife biologist or zoologist. These professionals study animals, their behavior and how they interact with their ecosystems. They also study the human impact on wildlife. Like in other scientific professions, wildlife biologists commonly write papers on their findings and occasionally must apply for grants or other sources of funding. Their work can be used for conservation purposes and scientific studies. A bachelor’s degree is suitable for entry-level positions, but advanced degrees will be needed for higher-level work or research positions.

MICROBIOLOGIST
Microbiologists conduct laboratory analysis and monitoring of microbial cultures, samples, and new drugs using special computer software. You'll investigate the growth, structural development, and other characteristics of microscopic organisms. Microbiologists study how microorganisms such as bacteria and viruses live, grow, and interact with their environments. Microbiologists typically work in laboratories with sophisticated instruments and equipment, while some work in offices and industrial settings. For entry-level jobs, microbiologists need a bachelor’s degree in microbiology or a related field, such as biology. Demand for microbiologists is expected to increase as a result of the increasing need for pharmaceuticals and biotechnology companies to produce new drugs.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENTIST
Environmental scientists or environmental specialists also belong to the bracket of biology jobs that pay well. You'll typically work with policymakers to address pollution and waste reduction problems. Using your knowledge of the natural sciences to develop plans to mitigate environmental issues that have a significant effect on public health. While some environmental scientists work in laboratories, others spend time in the field gathering data and monitoring environmental conditions. The hazards facing the environment, specifically in the context of climate change, will affect the demand for environmental scientists and specialists. Their knowledge will be indispensable in analyzing environmental problems and finding ways to protect our environment.

La'Kayla if none of the careers speak to you as a biology major, keep in mind that this is just a small sampling and by no means everything you'd be qualified for as a biology major.
Thank you comment icon Thank you, Doc for the advice. La'Kayla
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Erica’s Answer

La'Kayla,

Think about what interested you most in biology class. Was it plants? Animals? Disease? What I would suggest is doing a simple google search: what is the study of plants? Something more specific could be: what is the study of how plants affect the human body? Experiment with that and see what pops up!

In high school, I was most interested in infectious disease and how the immune system responds. I studied microbiology (this included immunology) and biochemistry.
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William’s Answer

Hi La'Kayla!

I also enjoyed biology quite a lot in high school; I took biology honors and AP biology back then. So, in terms of majors that deal with biology itself, the naming may vary on the institution. My undergraduate school (UC Santa Barbara) had a general biology major that did not focus on a particular specialty within the program. You would still take the same general biology course, biochemistry, genetics, and electives. In terms of more specialized fields at UCSB, there were:
1. Marine Biology-Focusing more upon aquatic animal biology
2. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology-Focusing more on the inner chemical mechanics behind cellular processes
3. Ecology and Evolution-Focusing more on how the environment affects and leads to change within populations
4. Microbiology- Focused on microorganisms and their role in infectious diseases
5. Pharmacology- Study of the chemistry behind medications and their effects
6. Physiology- Study of tissue/organ function in organisms
7. Zoology- Deeper analysis of the animal kingdom
All these listed courses had the same pre-biology major prerequisite courses, which included general chemistry, physics, calculus, organic chemistry, etc.

So, to answer your question, there are many majors under a University biology department- with each school having differing majors. I did Biochemistry as an undergraduate since I was interested in the chemical mechanisms behind concepts such as cellular respiration. In college, you can pursue research with a professor to gain a deeper understanding of the field; perhaps that can help guide your journey in school. Research is an amazing journey many of my peers have dived deep into; biology isn't just a major designed for someone attending medical school.

There are so many possibilities within biology, but this list doesn't cover all the options- it really does depend on which University you want to go to.

Hope that helps!
Thank you comment icon Thank you, this is amazing! I really needed it. La'Kayla
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Ryan’s Answer

There are several resources you can check out:

1. **College Factual**: They provide detailed reports on various biology-related majors. Here are some concentrations within general biology and other related fields:

- **Biology Concentrations**:
- **Biochemistry, Biophysics & Molecular Biology**: This major focuses on the study of biological molecules, their structures, and functions.
- **Neurobiology & Neurosciences**: Explore the nervous system and its complexities.
- **Physiology & Pathology Sciences**: Dive into the study of bodily functions and diseases.
- **Ecology, Evolution & Systematics Biology**: Learn about ecosystems, evolution, and biodiversity.
- **Cell Biology & Anatomical Sciences**: Understand cellular processes and anatomical structures.
- **Microbiological Sciences & Immunology**: Explore microorganisms and the immune system.
- **Biotechnology**: Discover applications of biological processes in various industries.
- **Zoology**: Study animal life and behavior.
- **Biomathematics & Bioinformatics**: Combine biology with mathematics and computer science.
- **Genetics**: Investigate heredity and genetic variation.
- **Pharmacology & Toxicology**: Explore drug interactions and toxic substances.
- **Botany/Plant Biology**: Focus on plant life and ecology.
- **Molecular Medicine**: Investigate molecular aspects of diseases.

- **Other Biological & Biomedical Sciences Majors**:
- This category includes additional majors related to biological and biomedical sciences.

You can find more information and explore specific programs on the [College Factual website](https://www.collegefactual.com/majors/biological-biomedical-sciences/general-biology/related-majors/).

2. **Explore a catalog at a college near you**: For example, they might offer various undergraduate majors, including:
- **Biochemistry and Molecular Biology**
- **Biological Sciences**
- **Cell Biology**
- **Evolution, Ecology and Biodiversity**
- **Genetics and Genomics**
- **Human Biology**
- **Marine and Coastal Science (Marine Ecology and Organismal Biology)**

3. **Pathways to Science**: If you're interested in internships, research opportunities, scholarships, and fellowships in biology, they have a comprehensive directory. Check it out [here](https://www.pathwaystoscience.org/discipline.aspx?sort=MED-Biology_Biology).

Remember to choose a major that aligns with your goals, interests, and strengths. Happy exploring! 🌿🔬🧬

Sources:
(1) Top Majors Related to General Biology - College Factual. https://www.collegefactual.com/majors/biological-biomedical-sciences/general-biology/related-majors/.
(2) Majors and Minors | College of Biological Sciences. https://basc.biology.ucdavis.edu/undergraduate/majors-minors.
(3) Biology: Directory of Internships, Research Opportunities, Scholarships .... https://www.pathwaystoscience.org/discipline.aspx?sort=MED-Biology_Biology.
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Nduagu’s Answer

Hey there! So, if you're into biology but not sure about becoming a doctor or nurse, don't worry, there are plenty of cool options you can explore! Check these out:

1. Biomedical Sciences: have you ever wondered how our bodies work on a microscopic level? Biomedical scientists study exactly that! They work in labs, figuring out how diseases happen and finding new ways to treat them.

2. Biotechnology: This one's like science fiction come to life! Biotechnologists use living things to make cool stuff like medicines, and foods, including environmentally friendly products.

3. Bioinformatics: If you're into computers and biology, this is your jam! Bioinformaticians use computer programs to understand DNA and all sorts of genetic stuff. They help make breakthroughs in medicine and genetics.

3. Environmental Science: Love nature and want to save the planet? Environmental scientists study how humans affect the Earth and find ways to keep it healthy for future generations.

4. Ecology: It's all about understanding how living things interact with each other and their environment. Ecologists get to explore ecosystems, study animals, and even help protect endangered species.

5. Microbiology: Have you heard of the fascinating world of bacteria and viruses? Microbiologists are the experts who study them! They help find cures for diseases and keep our food safe from germs.

6. Genetics: It's like solving genetic mysteries! Geneticists explore how traits are passed down from parents to kids and even help solve crimes using DNA.

7. Biomedical Engineering: This one's for the creative minds who love science and technology! Biomedical engineers design cool gadgets and devices to help doctors and improve healthcare.

8. Marine Biology: Dream of exploring the oceans? Marine biologists study underwater life, from tiny fish to massive whales. They help protect marine habitats and keep our oceans healthy.

9. Pharmacology: If you are curious about how medicines work? Pharmacologists investigate how drugs affect our bodies and help develop new treatments, and drugs for diseases.

I hope this helps you see all the amazing paths you can take with your love for biology!
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