What Do You Learn in Biology? Coursework & Career Opportunities

October 20, 2021

Are you thinking about earning a degree in biology, wondering “Is a biology degree worth it?


Whether you’re researching ideas for your college major or asking yourself, “What can I do with a major in biology?”, this article will give you a broad overview of biology coursework and career opportunities.


Biological science is a broad field of study with boundless opportunities for your future professional journey. Simply defined, biology is the study of life in all its fascinating forms—from microorganisms to mammals.


The beauty and intricacies of life (i.e., God’s creation) are worthy of exploration and are sure to inspire awe and wonder. When studying biology, there’s always more to examine and discover.


Because it’s such a vast discipline, biology is organized into dozens of sub-fields of study, such as botany, zoology, ecology, genetics, exercise science, health science, physiology, biochemistry, genetics, microbiology, marine biology, and more.


Students majoring in general biology will broadly study several of these sub-fields, while others might choose to go deeper into medical biology or sports science, for example.


Biology: a branch of knowledge that deals with living organisms and vital processes

—Source: Merriam-Webster


What do you learn in biology?

Biology is an academically rigorous field of study. Bachelor’s and master’s degrees in biology and health sciences include hands-on coursework heavy on mathematics and science. 


Depending on your specific major, core curriculum typically spans the following subjects:

  • Ecology
  • General Biology
  • General Chemistry
  • Genetics
  • Organic Chemistry
  • College Algebra
  • Applied Statistics
  • Calculus  
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology
  • Biomechanics
  • Exercise Physiology
  • Epidemiology
  • Physics


In addition to math and science coursework, important skills for biology majors entering the field include reading comprehension, critical thinking, and active listening, according to Data USA. Computer skills are also crucial, especially for research positions.


If you have a passion for science or strong interest in a specific healthcare occupation, such as a physician, a degree in biology could be an ideal foundation for further education and a satisfying career.


Learn more about Biological + Health Sciences at Crown College >


Biology majors also pair well with many minors, which allow you to expand your studies, personalize your degree, and open additional avenues for future employment.


Here are a few minors that pair nicely with a biology major:

  • Chemistry
  • Math
  • Sociology
  • Data Analytics
  • Health
  • Environmental Science

What do you learn in biology?

What can you do with a biology degree?

Jobs with a biology degree, including bachelor’s level and above, are plentiful and diverse. 


Common careers with a biology degree include medicine, veterinary science, research, forensic science, dentistry, nursing, and teaching. Workplace settings also vary from field and laboratory work to hospital, university, and office environments.


Employment opportunities of course will depend on your goals, experiences, and education level. Some of the top-employing occupations for biology majors require a doctoral or professional degree, meaning you’ll need additional training beyond a bachelor’s degree.


The following are the three most common biology-related jobs:

  1. Physicians
  2. College teachers
  3. Physical scientists


In addition to the most common, physicians are the highest paid, with an average annual salary of over $220,000 (source: Data USA).


Currently, health education is the top growing job among jobs with a biology degree—projected to increase 21% by 2029, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics


Clinical laboratory technologists and technician jobs are also expected to grow faster than average (7%) and are accessible with a biology bachelor’s degree.


In general, employment opportunities are available in the science, health, and technology industries as well as environmental nonprofits and government organizations. Studying biology ensures you’ll gain a holistic perspective that will apply across many employment sectors.


Is a biology degree worth it?

In general, biology employment opportunities are available in the science, health, and technology industries as well as environmental nonprofits and government organizations.


Studying biology ensures you’ll gain a holistic perspective that will apply across many employment sectors. If your career goals lie in these areas, a biology degree is for sure worth it.


Is a master’s degree in biology worth it?

Some biology majors do go on to earn an advanced degree, including a master’s, doctoral, or professional degree. Whether you need education beyond a four-year degree depends on your personal and professional aspirations. 


If your dream is to work as a surgeon or in a health-related profession such as physical therapy, optometry, or dentistry, you’ll choose a pre-professional program that will prepare you for further study at the master’s level and beyond.


You may also choose to pursue a biology master’s degree for career advancement opportunities. If you’re wondering, “Is a masters degree in biology worth it?”, consider your career and academic ambitions.


Scheduling an appointment with an academic advisor and a biology professor is also an ideal way to learn more about the curriculum and your career prospects after graduation.


Is biology a good major?

Biology may be an excellent choice for your college major, especially if you have an aptitude or strong interest in math, science, and—most importantly—in discovering and applying specialized knowledge that promotes life and human flourishing.


At Crown College, we encourage students in biology majors to examine God’s creation from a biblical perspective. Our holistic approach produces graduates of high integrity and sound ethics, who are well prepared to teach, work in the field or continue on to graduate school.


Learn more about Biological + Health Sciences at Crown College or get in touch with us for additional information about our Biology majors.