Degree Overview: Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree in Biological SciencesMajors Overview April 19, 2014
Many areas of life science, including ecology, biochemistry, and microbiology, are examined in Biological Science bachelor’s degree programs. Students are able to customize the program with many pre-professional courses and specializations to fit their occupational and future education goals. Plenty of technical and entry-level jobs are offered to bachelor’s degree program graduates, but a career as a biological scientist requires a doctorate degree.
Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree Programs in Biological Sciences
Students enrolled in Biological Sciences Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree programs are imparted knowledge in a wide range of biology-related subject areas, such as genetics, evolution, and cells and molecules. Many concentrations are available to students, for the purpose of providing a focused educational experience through various available concentrations, including human biotechnology, human biology, and molecular biology and microbiology.
Students can prepare for graduate programs by completing pre-professional programs in several areas, including Physical Therapy, Pharmacy, Forestry, Medicine, Optometry, and Dentistry. A comprehensive understanding and appreciation of the interconnectivity and diversity of different forms of life on our planet can be developed by those who successfully complete a bachelor’s degree program.
Students enrolled in a BS in Biological Sciences are required to complete 106-125 credit hours of coursework. Coursework combines physics, math, chemistry and biology courses, and may include additional general education classes in the humanities, history and English. Coursework may include subject areas such as:
•Molecular biology and genetics
•Whole plant physiology
•Human anatomy and physiology
•Principles of microbiology
•Ecology, evolution and biodiversity
Graduates of the BS program in Biological Sciences enjoy broad employment options with different recruiters in biotechnology firms, food processing companies, zoos, museums, animal rescue centers, pharmaceutical companies, universities, hospitals, and State and Federal Government agencies. There is a demand for individuals with formal training in biology, in various industries including publishing, marketing and sales. Bachelor’s degree graduates can choose from specific career options such as:
•Medical laboratory technologist
•Secondary school biology teacher
Job and Wage Outlook
A job growth rate of 14% has been projected for biological technicians during the decade between 2010 and 2020 (The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)). Corresponding projected growth rates are 15% for medical and clinical laboratory technicians, and 11% for medical and clinical laboratory technologists. During the same period, a below-average job growth rate of 7% has been projected for high school teachers. In May 2012, biological technicians earned an average annual wage of $39,750; during that year, clinical technicians took home $37,240, clinical technologists $57,580 and secondary school teachers $55,050.
Continuing Education Choices
An undergraduate degree in Biology can serve as a foundation for further education in a graduate program at a health-related school, such as dental, veterinary or medical. The baccalaureate study of Biology imparts a broad knowledge base that can be used to enroll into more focused and fine-tuned advanced degrees such as the above. Students who aspire to continue their biological education can pursue a graduate degree in Biological Sciences. Those aspiring to become teachers at the postsecondary level, or independent researchers or biological scientists would be best served by earning this type of advanced degree.