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Factors to Consider When Selecting Parasitology Graduate Schools and Colleges

Higher Education Articles April 28, 2015

The study of parasites and their effects on their hosts is referred to as parasitology. Parasitologist career options are dynamic, vast, and available in numerous industries. Those interested in a career as a parasitologist should look into one of the many graduate degree programs, including biology, public health, medicine, and pathology.

Selecting Parasitology Graduate Schools and Colleges

Students enrolled in parasitology are imparted education in several disciplines, including technology, chemistry, and biology. Students are exposed to a broad academic background in numerous fields of study to impart a basis for the skills necessary for working in various veterinary, agricultural, medical, and public settings as a parasitologist.

Schools offer basic coursework in parasitology through undergraduate degree programs in zoology, botany, and biology to train students for graduate programs offered by research universities and colleges across the country. In this article, we take a look at some important factors to consider when you choose a parasitology graduate school or college.

Facilities Offered

Students would benefit from enrolling in programs with capacious clinical research facilities, such as disease clinics and observation laboratories.

Career Map

Some parasitologists seek careers in academia and research. Others may aim for careers in veterinary medicine, dentistry, or medicine. The career map that a student may plan for himself or herself will help in structuring an academic course of study based on the most applicable and diverse choices offered. A doctorate or master’s degree is a requirement for veterinarians, physicians, educators, and researchers.

Schools also offer dual-degree options at the graduate level to assist students interested in obtaining a Master of Social Work (M.S.W.), Doctor of Dental Surgery (D.D.S.), or Doctor of Medicine (M.D.). Students may also obtain a Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) or a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree. Schools offer numerous educational opportunities, whereby broad instruction is available for many career options relating to parasitology.

Teaching Assistantships Offered

Those seeking teaching careers would benefit from enrolling in schools offering preparation courses to train prospective teachers or teaching assistantships. In these programs, enrolled students are offered hands-on training through the creation of assignments and curricula.

Degree Overview: Graduate Degrees in Parasitology

Master’s Degree Programs for Parasitologists

Schools offer numerous master’s degree programs with educational tracks in parasitology, including those in entomology, cellular biology, and other related biology and health fields of study. Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a bachelor’s degree in chemistry or biology, although majors such as agricultural studies, botany, or zoology would be more relevant to the career interests of aspiring parasitologists.

Graduates of a master’s program may seek continuing education by enrolling in a doctoral program or embark on a career in wildlife control or public health care. Core coursework may include topic areas such as:

•Bacteriology
•Molecular biology
•Virology
•Microbiology

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) Programs for Parasitologists

Schools offer doctoral programs with research opportunities in parasitology via select programs in pathology studies or cellular biology. Coursework in parasitology typically covers instruction about genetic considerations for contraction and disease, the history of human parasites, treatment and control of parasites and host systems, and potential diseases that parasitic organisms cause.

Academic positions or lab research are often opted for by graduates of Ph.D. programs, although some prefer fieldwork. Students complete core coursework and lab work in areas such as the following:

•Anatomical structures of living organisms
•Neurobiology
•Biological reproduction
•Immunology

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