Career Advice on How to Become A Microbiologist

General Career Information

If you are grossed out by the thought of millions an billions of little things that you can only see with a microscope, then a career as a microbiologists is probably one for you to go ahead and skip.  Microbiologists are, of course, biological scientists who specialize in the study of the tiniest of “critters,” such as bacteria and fungi.  It is common for microbiologists to choose a specialty in which to focus their attention at study.  One example would be a virologist who studies viruses. Another example would be an immunologist, which is a microbiologist that studies how the immune system works.  If you don’t think it sounds very sexy on paper, you should try talking about it at a party.

Career Facts:

The very nature of the work means that many microbiologists study how living organisms interact with their environment, and how they impact and interact with humans.  This of course, means that much of their work is spent in the area of research, which often takes place at universities and colleges, within the federal government or at private companies.  Nearly forty percent of all biologists are employed by either local government, state government or the federal government. Thus, before starting your job search it is important to note that government is one of the largest employers of microbiologists in the country.

Many microbiologists dedicate their lives to working to solve a variety of medical and scientific problems.  Often this work is done at universities and colleges and the end result, benefits all people in the long run.


Career Opportunities and Job Outlook- Average:

So what else do you need to know for career planning? Microbiologists should see about an average rate of growth between now and 2016.  In general, a degree of competition is expected, due to the fact that less funding for research is expected in the coming years. Obviously, the biological sciences depend heavily upon research.
Job Outlook is Fair

A Day in The Life:

One of the first facts that should be understood about microbiologists is that the average day for these highly-educated scientists can very dramatically depending upon their field of study.  Once a microbiologist has chosen a field of study, his or her research and work is likely to be quite different from another microbiologist in another field.  Further, whether or not one is working for a university or a private corporation is another major factor in determining the nature of the work.

Regardless of where they are employed, microbiologists are likely to find their workdays spent performing research within their discipline or running around the world while being chased by mysterious evil people, (well not really, that’s just in the movies).  In the real world, most biologists and microbiologists spend their time using cutting edge equipment to explore biological mysteries and solve biological problems.


Average Salary:

The average salary for microbiologists in 2006 was roughly $58,000, with the top ten percent earning about $108,000 per year.



Career Training and Qualifications:

A considerable degree of education is required to become a microbiologist.  A PhD in biology is required for most positions. However for some research jobs, a master’s degree may be sufficient for these careers.

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