Zoology Degree: Career Options for Graduates with a Zoology Degree

Published Aug 31, 2009

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Zoologists, also known as animal biologists or animal scientists, study animals in their natural habitats or in laboratory settings, learning as much as possible about animal life. Zoology is a broad field and candidates training to become zoologists will typically focus their study on one group of animals or area of animal life while completing their training. The degree level attained in Zoology will directly affect the responsibility the graduate will handle in his or her career.

Associate's Degree in Zoology Career Summary

An associate's degree in Zoology is a general program that focuses on the scientific study of animal biology. The basic biology classes taken will reference molecular and cellular systems, anatomy, physiology and animal behavior. Many colleges offer generalized animal biology and Zoology training classes through associate's degree programs that cover topics such as scientific research and observation, animal handling and data collection and analysis. Graduates of an associate's program are qualified to work as a veterinary assistant. Also, with an associate's degree, one can easily transfer to a 4-year Zoology bachelor's degree program.

Bachelor's Degree in Zoology Career Summary

The coursework for completing a bachelor's degree in Zoology includes biology, genetics, general chemistry, organic chemistry and ecosystems (marine and terrestrial). Degree programs, which take four or five years to complete, often feature a mix of classroom study and field research. After completing a bachelor's degree, graduates can work as zookeepers, teachers, fishery managers, wildlife researchers, medical researchers, industrial researchers and conservation officers.

Master's Degree in Zoology Career Summary

A master's degree program in Zoology will build upon knowledge gained at the undergraduate level and allow students to concentrate on a singular aspect of Zoology. Among these are conservation biology, ecology and ecosystem studies, evolutionary biology and systematics, fisheries biology and aquaculture, environmental toxicology and wildlife ecology management. The graduate curriculum consists of a program of courses, seminars and research planned in conjunction with the student's adviser and advisory committee. This program will allow graduates to teach at the university level, perform research or work as a biologist, conducting animal research. A master's degree may also prepare students for placement in a Ph.D. or veterinary program, which will allow them to become a veterinarian.

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