Do you want to work as an animal biotechnologist?
- Read about the most important info you need to decide on following this career.
- Follow the 7 points below and search for a tertiary institution near you for future studies. If you already are graduated, you may also search through our list of Jobs in the main menu.
- If you want to PLAN the way you need to prepare, then join our community in step 8 where you will learn everything, while chatting with other potential biotechnologists and experts from around the world. Prepare to be amazed!
UPDATED: 31 August 2020
1. What is an animal biotechnologist?
Biotechnologists manipulate organisms or components of a biological system to create new products or processes. They study the physical, genetic, and chemical characteristics of cells and tissues and explore industrial applications for them.
Types of biotechnology include:
- environmental – detecting and controlling pollution and contamination in the environment, industrial waste, and agricultural chemicals, creating renewable energy and designing biodegradable materials to reduce humanity’s ecological footprint
- medical and health – using live organisms or biomolecular processes to develop and improve treatments, identify inherited diseases, cure certain disorders, and even lead to organ regeneration
- industrial – using cloning and enzyme production to preserve and enhance the taste in food and drink, and developing enzymes to remove stains from clothing at lower washing temperatures
- agricultural biotechnology – improving animal feed and genetically modifying crops to increase pest resistance and productivity
- biofuels – using organic compounds to reduce the cost of bio-refining reagents and put biofuels on an equal footing with fossil fuels, and creating chemicals from renewable biomass to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The Animal Byproduct Biofuel Producer is also discussed separately on OZT.
- marine and aquatic biotechnology – increasing the yields of farmed fish and designing disease-resistant strains of oysters and vaccines against certain viruses that can infect fish.
2. What do they do?
Biotechnologists examine the genetic and physical characteristics of cells and organisms to create new products and processes.
- create, conduct and monitor experiments
- use scientific knowledge to achieve results
- perform data analysis on your experiments and interpret findings
- record and share results
- set up, maintain and operate laboratory
- Administration and filing
Where they work:
Animal biotechnologists mainly work indoors, mostly in a laboratory setup.
Places of Employment –
Biotechnologists can work for big pharmaceutical companies, medical research institutions, conservation organizations, universities and government.
On average the income per year is around $45,000. This will differ from country to country. The salary will also vary depending on the area of focus and the industry. Salaries tend to be higher in large companies within the private commercial sector, particularly at senior level.
They do tend to work long hours, and sometimes need to push through weekends and over holidays to get important work done within deadlines.
Future growth and Possibilities:
The yearly growth is 7% for jobs in this sector
3. Which Skills are required?
The skills required for a career as an animal biotechnologist can be divided into two very important groups. The first is the group containing life skills, which are the core skills that are necessary or desirable for full participation in everyday life. The second group is career skills, or the specific skills required to allow a person to enter and operate effectively within a specific career. Some or maybe even all of the life skills can assist in strengthening the career skills, and they might even be the same for specific careers.
- Critical thinking
- Creative thinking
- Decision making
- Problem Solving
- Effective communication
- Interpersonal relationship
- Good business knowledge
- Basic customer service skills
- Good health and physical fitness
- Excellent computer literacy
4. Which Subjects must I have at School?
The subjects you choose at school are important as they lay the foundation for further studies at college or university. While still at school, it’s also important to learn more about the animals you will work with, as well as gain some experience.
OZT has a list of various tertiary institutions where you can study further, after school. Each of these institutions also have their own Group page on OZT where you will find the exact subjects they require of you to have passed in school. Keep these requirements in mind, and discuss it with your school, guidance counselor and parents to ensure that you are prepared!
5. What will I need to Study?
Although there are possibilities of entering this career with a College Diploma, most graduates have at least a Bachelor’s Degree. The level of studies will also be determined by the speciality you want to follow. A career within agricultural biotechnology or health might require further studies, up to at least a Master’s Degree.
Focus on subjects such as biochemistry, physics, biotechnology or microbiology.
Short Courses –
Most biotechnologists will find short courses that fall within the specific direction or field they want to specialize in.
The duration of College and Bachelor’s Degrees can be up to 3 or 4 years. Short Courses are usually between a few weeks and a year.
Possible Career Preparation Paths:
If this is your dream career that you want to pursue, then it’s important to plan the way forward.
Why is planning important?
To ensure that you understand the requirements for your career, and that you are always prepared for the next step on the road towards your dream. A Preparation Path is like your road map to where you want to be.
Possible Combined Career Paths:
It is possible to sometimes combine two or more related careers. This normally happens when you study and practice a specific main career, but the knowledge and experience gained also help you to have a paying hobby or secondary income career.
Possible Alternatives (there are a lot more):
Training and apprenticeship:
Even though it is important to study to get into some of the animal careers, most of the skills you will need as an animal biotechnologist will be acquired through practice. This means that you will learn how to perform some of the daily tasks by actually doing it a few times and learning the steps.
In some cases entry level positions require training sessions even before you are allowed to actually perform your job duties. These sessions are offered by the place of employment, after you have successfully applied.
Join the Animal Biotechnologists Group in STEP 8 to learn more and even interact with the educational institutions that will help you secure your dream career!
Average level of education of all the people who enter the career:
6. Licenses, Certificate, Registration and Professional Associations
Certain animal careers require some form of legal certification to prove that you can indeed do the work, and work with the necessary equipment.
Although not required by law, certifications may help workers establish their credentials and enhance their skills.
Learn more about requirements by joining OZT in STEP 8.
7. Where can I study further?
All of the above information will help you understand more about the Career, including the fact that there are different paths to take to reach it. But if you are almost done with High School (Grades 11 or 12), you also need to start thinking about further studies, and WHERE you will study.
See the List of Universities, Colleges and Online Training Academies who offer courses towards biotechnology.
8. Join the OZT community
Join us as a special member and learn more about becoming an animal biotechnologist.
Members of the Platform have special access to:
- Info on the best places where you can study (colleges, universities and online)
- Expertly designed advice to prepare you for the career, and links to places where you can gain valuable experience. For some career experience is necessary, otherwise you wont get the job!
- Top notch info on each of the different species you will work with
- Make friends around the world and share knowledge
- Compete and win points, badges, games, prizes and certificates. Be the best of the best, while you learn and prepare!
If you have decided on being an Animal Biotechnologist, please click on the JOIN GROUP button. Members will be directed to the Group, while non-members will be assisted to register first.
If this career is NOT the career for you, then you may return to the MAIN CAREER menu, and search for something different.
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