Wildlife Biology Masters Degrees

A wildlife biology master's degree program can prepare you to work as a wildlife biologist and study mammals, birds, fish or reptiles. See what the program prerequisites are, explore the classes you'll take, read about the job outlook in this field, and see about the possibility of studying online. Schools offering Biology degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Are There Any Prerequisites for a Wildlife Biology Master's Degree Program?

To apply to a master's degree program in wildlife biology, some programs require that you earn a bachelor's degree in biology or a related field, such as ecology or zoology. Other programs may allow you to apply to a school if you hold a degree in an unrelated field as long as you have a record of relevant coursework. You must also submit scores from standardized tests, including the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and, in some cases, the GRE subject test in biology.

PrerequisitesBachelor's degree, relevant coursework, GRE
CourseworkWildlife management, wildlife diseases, conservation techniques, original thesis
Online Degree OptionsGraduate wildlife biology programs aren't typically available online, but general biology programs are
Job Outlook 4% growth from 2014-2024 for all zoologists and wildlife biologists

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Type of Coursework Can I Expect?

During a master's degree program in wildlife biology, you'll perform extensive research, including field assignments that might require you to travel to specific ecosystems. Your wildlife research is complemented by lecture-based coursework. The program might conclude with an original thesis project that ties together coursework and independent research. Classes will teach you about theories and current issues in wildlife biology. Common subjects of study include:

  • Wildlife management techniques
  • Wetlands management
  • Wildlife diseases
  • Mammalogy
  • Conservation techniques
  • Biometrics

Can I Earn This Degree Online?

Master's degree programs in wildlife biology are not typically available online. This is due to the hands-on laboratory requirements, which may include animal dissections and observations. In addition, the field research components to these programs limit the potential for distance learning.

You can, however, earn an online master's degree in biology. Courses cover topics like wildlife management and ecology. Programs are delivered entirely online, but exams might need to be taken in a proctored environment. To participate remotely, you might need a microphone, DVD player and webcam.

What Is the Job Outlook?

Although your options could improve if you complete a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Wildlife Biology, research positions can still be available to you with a master's degree. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), biological scientist positions were expected to increase by 4% between 2014 and 2024 (www.bls.gov). This was slower than the average for other jobs. The median annual salary for zoologists and wildlife biologists was $58,270 as of 2014, reported the BLS.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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