Starting A Career with a Zoology Degree? Here's What You Need To Know

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If animals have a special place in your heart, you should consider pursuing a zoology degree. Zoology refers to the study of animal science and anatomy. Topics like animal biology, behavior, adaptation, and conservation are explored in this study. Zoology majors prepare for a career in zoology by developing practical skills in field research and laboratory techniques and gaining hands-on experience working with all kinds of animals. This article will explore the skills needed to start a career in zoology, required courses, types of zoology degrees, and the career paths that await zoology graduates.

Required Skills

A career with a zoology degree often involves studying, analyzing, observing, and handling animals. That is why you need to possess the following skills:

  • Communication skills
  • Critical-thinking skills
  • Emotional stamina and stability
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Observation skills
  • Outdoor skills
  • Problem-solving skills

Aside from several core abilities and skills, your success in this field relies on your passion for studying the animal kingdom.

Required Courses

Since zoology is a science-based study, you will need to have solid background knowledge. Courses generally required for zoology include the following in order to look at all aspects of the animal kingdom:

  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Animal Development
  • Cell Biology
  • Comparative Physiology
  • General Biology
  • General Chemistry
  • Invertebrate Biology
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Physics
  • Vertebrate Biology

Types of Zoology Degrees

Zoology degrees vary in length and intensity. It is available at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Here are the types of zoology degrees you can take depending on your desired level of educational attainment:

Associate Degree

There are community colleges that offer an Associate of Science degree in zoology. Job opportunities for this program include animal caretaking or zookeeping. If you want to continue your studies and complete a bachelor's degree, you can transfer the college credit you have earned in the associate program.

  • Bachelor's Degree in Zoology

A bachelor's degree program usually requires students to complete a capstone research project in their chosen specialization before graduating. Earning a bachelor's degree in zoology allows you to work for laboratories, museums, wildlife recreation centers, or veterinary technicians.

Master's Degree

A master's degree in zoology allows you to further hone your knowledge and skills in your chosen field or specialization. It takes at least two years of full-time study and requires a bachelor's degree. Before graduation, you may be given the option to either produce a project or a thesis and then take an oral examination. Completing a master's degree in zoology may land you at a higher level and higher-paying roles such as an administrator of zoos or national parks.

Doctorate Degree

After completing a master's degree, you may study for another five years to earn a doctorate degree in zoology. After completing your coursework, you will be required to take a comprehensive examination and then produce a dissertation on your original research in zoology. A doctorate degree gives you the chance to work in the academe or land an executive role in zoos, parks, or government agencies.

Job options

For zoology graduates, there are a lot of career options for you in universities, zoos, and government agencies. Here are some jobs you can get after completing a zoology degree:

  • Academic researcher
  • Animal nutritionist
  • Animal physiotherapist
  • Biomedical scientist
  • Ecologist
  • Environmental consultant
  • Environmental education officer
  • Environmental manager
  • Higher education lecturer
  • Field trials officer
  • Marine biologist
  • Nature conservation officer
  • Research scientist
  • Science writer
  • Veterinary nurse
  • Veterinary surgeon
  • Zookeeper
  • Zoologist
  • Toxicologist

Do you see yourself in any of these jobs? Do you have the skills needed to pursue a career in zoology? Do you care about animals? If your answer is yes to any (or all, even!), consider studying zoology now!

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