If you like Biology, and don’t want to study medicine to become a doctor, do not be afraid, that is not the end of your biology dream. Step into the world of Life Sciences and experience Biology at its fullest. Life Sciences is the study of every aspect of living things right from tiny microbes to the giant blue whale! It is a comprehensive study of biology unlike traditional courses such as botany and zoology that offer a limited scope.
In a BSc course of Life Sciences, one would typically be studying subjects such as Genetics, Molecular Biology, Immunology, Developmental Biology, Neurobiology, Biochemistry and Environmental Science. The subjects would vary according to the syllabus of each university, but they would ensure that a wide variety of sciences of living things would be covered. A Bachelor’s degree in Life Sciences would then prepare you for a Master’s degree in any field of specialization of Life Sciences.
The Traditional Academic path- Pursuing Pure Sciences
According to the Traditional Academic Path, after a BSc, one would join an MSc. The MSc could either be in Life Sciences itself with a specialization e.g. MSc in Life Science with specialization in Aquaculture or MSc in a more specified field such as MSc in Genetics or MSc in Biochemistry.
Such a degree will equip you with the necessary skills and Qualifications to Apply for a PhD programme in India as well as abroad. A PhD programme in usually lasts for about 5 years. One could also Apply for an Integrated MSc-PhD programme right after a BSc. During this period, you would be conducting research in the field of interest that you have applied for. Most Premier Institutions that offer PhD programmes would have an entrance test. If you really like your subject and are really interested in studying further, this should not scare you.
The satisfaction you will get after a PhD will come from discovering something absolutely new. After a PhD, you can join a lab of your interest and continue more research as a Post Doctoral Fellow.
Eventually, you may also get involved in teaching and may become a professor in a college
The Alternative Path
Instead of conducting research in Pure Sciences you may conduct research in the applied field. Here you would be involved in the various industries or Pharma companies that try to develop products for consumers. You may be involved in anything from inventing the best face creams to creating stem cell medicine techniques to reversing ageing.
The Third Path
The Third Path is to do whatever you want. During your BSc, you would have learnt essential skills such as critical thinking, analytical skills, writing skills etc that you can put to use even if you don’t want to continue with research. You can become a science communicator or a science journalist. You can also study law and become a patent lawyer. You may also take other short courses and get into food and quality assurance or get into laboratory management.
You can become an environmental Scientists, A Conservation Biologist and help make a difference to Earth. You can also live an exciting crime-solving life by becoming a forensic scientist!
The world is open to you.
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Saunri Dhodi Lobo is pursuing M.Sc in Life Sciences with specialization in Neurobiology. Her interests include writing poetry, going for nature walks and swimming. Currently she is involved in research on Alzheimer’s Disease in fruit flies.
Read all Articles by Saunri Dhodi Lobo