Zoology Majors

Earning a bachelor's degree in zoology is an option to combine your love of science and animals. As a zoology major, you'll undertake a rigorous science curriculum that can prepare you for diverse career options. Continue reading to see sample courses, areas of concentration and how much you could earn. Schools offering Biology degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Which Specializations Can I Choose in a Zoology Major?

Working with an advisor, you can create or select a specialization that matches your primary academic interests and career goals. Zoologists study animal life from the cellular level to the macro level of ecosystems. After taking introductory biology and courses in which these levels of animal life are explored, you may gravitate toward a specialization. Alternatively, you may choose general zoology as a major suitable for pre-veterinary, pre-medical or pre-dental studies. Some potential specializations within a zoology major include:

  • Biomedical science
  • Ecology and evolutionary biology
  • Animal behavior and neurobiology
  • Cell and developmental biology
  • General zoology
  • Genetics
  • Marine biology

Specializations Genetics, ecology, marine biology, animal behavior, biomedical science
Common Courses Biology, calculus, physiology, statistics, evolution
Possible Careers Laboratory technician, science teacher, science writer, animal caretaker, biological photographer
Median Salary (2018)* $44,500 (for biology technicians)
Job Outlook (2016-2026)* 10% increase (for biological technicians)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Courses Will I Take?

As a zoology major, you'll begin taking courses in specialized areas - such as animal behavior (known as ethology), phylogeny or comparative anatomy - as upper-division electives. Some of these are advanced laboratory courses. During your first two years, you'll take foundational courses in biology and supporting sciences, as well as mathematics. You may also have opportunities as an undergraduate to get involved in faculty research. Summer internships related to your major may be encouraged. Some core zoology major courses may include:

  • Biology
  • Evolution
  • Physiology
  • Genetics
  • Organic chemistry
  • Physics
  • Calculus
  • Statistics

What Can I Do with My Degree?

Because of the broad science training you receive as a zoology major, you typically have a wide range of career options as a graduate. However, graduate studies are required to be eligible for many of these possibilities. A Bachelor of Science in Zoology provides a strong foundation for numerous master's degree programs in the biological sciences. If you want to do research in ornithology, ichthyology or entomology - respectively, the study of birds, fish and insects - graduate school will be your next step.

With a bachelor's degree in zoology, you might consider a career as a laboratory technician. According to PayScale.com, research laboratory technicians earned salaries between $30,000 at the 10th percentile and $57,000 at the 90th percentile as of July 2019. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the average salary for a zoologist or wildlife biologist in 2018 was $67,760; however, this career path often requires a graduate degree.

Other career options for a zoology major may include:

  • Animal caretaker
  • Science teacher
  • Science writer
  • Laboratory or research assistant
  • Biomedical salesperson
  • Biological photographer
  • Science illustrator

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:

  • 1. Degree Options:
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