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Embryologist Career Profile

Do you want to work as an embryologist?

READ: This page helps you to read about the career and the info you need to decide on whether this is indeed the career you want to follow.

RESEARCH: ​Learn about the skills required and minimum subjects to enter this career, as well as the places where you can study further after school.

PREPARE: If you want to plan and prepare for the career, then join the OZT Community! Members have access to tools, while chatting with other students and experts from around the world. Prepare to be amazed!

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24 April 2024

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What is an embryologist?

An animal embryologist is a scientist who specialises in the study of animal embryos, which are the earliest stages of development in an organism before it is born or hatched. Animal embryologists study various aspects of embryonic development, including fertilisation, cell division, differentiation, and morphogenesis.

Animal Health 1

Alternative Names

Animal embryologists may also be referred to by several alternative names, depending on their specific area of focus or the context in which they work. Some alternative names for an animal embryologist include:

  • Developmental biologist: Focuses on the broader study of development in animals, including embryonic development.
  • Reproductive biologist: Specializes in the study of reproductive processes in animals, which may include embryonic development.
  • Animal reproduction specialist: Experts in animal reproduction, including the processes involved in embryonic development.
  • Animal reproductive physiologist: Studies the physiological processes involved in animal reproduction, which encompasses embryonic development.
  • Animal fertility expert: Focuses on aspects related to animal fertility, including embryonic development and reproductive technologies.
  • Veterinary embryologist: Specializes in animal embryology within the context of veterinary medicine and animal health.
  • Animal developmental geneticist: Investigates the genetic mechanisms underlying animal development, including embryonic stages.
  • Embryo technician: Individuals who work directly with animal embryos in laboratory settings, performing various techniques and procedures related to their manipulation and study.

Career Categories

The Embryologist career can be found in the following career categories:

  • Health
  • Farming & Livestock Management
  • Marine Conservation
  • Wildlife Conservation
  • Zoos, Aquariums, Museums and Theme Parks

Micromanipulator?

A robotic devise used to interact with embryos and cells under a microscope

Comparative embryology?

Comparative embryology is the comparison of embryo development across species

What does an Embryologist do?

Groups of animals an Embryologist works with

Cats List Icon
Cats
Dogs List Icon OZT
Dogs
Critters List Icon OZT
Critters
Farm Animals Icon OZT
Farm Animals
Mammals List Icon OZT
Mammals
Birds List Icon OZT
Birds
Fish List Icon OZT
Fish
Reptiles List Icon OZT
Reptiles
Amphibians List Icon OZT
Amphibians
Crustaceans List Icon OZT
Crustaceans
Mollusks Link Icon OZT
Mollusks

What is the level of Interaction with the Animals?

With who does an Embryologist work?

Besides working with all of the animals, Embryologists will need to interact with other people while doing their daily tasks. The people might include fellow staff members or the public.

Fellow staff might include:

  • Supervisors/Managers
  • Operational staff, such as Human Resources, Finance and Maintenance
  • Veterinary staff
  • Scientific Researchers
  • Lab Technicians

What does an Embryologist focus on?

The primary focus of embryologists is to study the egg cells or embryos of specific species to assist in fertility and future conservation.

What are the daily tasks of an Embryologist?

  • Discuss brief with clients or fellow staff
  • Research the development of embryos
  • Assist in the in vitro fertilization of animals
  • Study and assist in freezing embryos for future study or fertilization
  • Monitor fertilized embryo development and select embryos for transfer to selected female animals
  • Assist with the actual implant of fertilized eggs
  • Maintain laboratory and equipment
  • Administration and filing

The working environment of an Embryologist

Where does an Embryologist work?

Environment –

Animal embryologists will spend most of their working hours indoors, within a laboratory setup. They might also be called to travel and perform implants at places where animals are kept.

Places of Employment –

They can be permanently employed by fertility clinics, animal hospitals, research laboratories, universities, marine and wildlife conservation organizations, zoos and aquariums, as well as government.

What is the average annual salary of an Embryologist?

On average the income per year is around $75,000. This will differ from country to country.

Can an Embryologists be promoted?

Advancement in the field typically depends on work experience. First-year scientists often fit their training commitments around daily work demands.

The levels of each promotion might differ from organization to organization, but generally are the following:

Intern -> Junior Embryologist -> Senior Embryologist -> Manager

What difficulties can an Embryologist face?

The most difficult part is working under a lot of pressure, as results of work done is extremely important. They may also work long hours and over weekends and holidays to finish work within tight deadlines.

​Future growth and Possibilities

Entry into this career is very competitive and demanding, but the current yearly growth of this career is around 6%. It might grow even faster as embryo preservation of endangered species becomes critical.

Availability of Jobs

Average

Which Skills are required by an Embryologist?

The skills required for a career as an embryologist 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.

Life Skills

  • Self-awareness
  • Empathy
  • Critical thinking
  • Creative thinking
  • Decision making
  • Problem Solving
  • Effective communication
  • Interpersonal relationship
Life Skills
40%

Career Skills

  • ​Good knowledge of laboratory equipment
  • Good care and handling of animals
  • Basic customer service skills
  • Good health and physical fitness
  • Excellent computer literacy (drawing software)
Career Skills
60%

Which Subjects must I have at School to prepare for this career?

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!

What will I need to Study to become an Embryologist?

Minimum Requirements

​To become an Animal Embryologists requires at least a Bachelor’s degree, though further studies towards a master’s or doctoral degree may be required for some positions.

Study Focus

Major –

One of the following majors can be pursued, including biology, animal physiology, animal science or biomedicine.

Short Courses –

Even though one will study everything related to embryos and fertility, their will always be short courses on different techniques and equipment used in this field.

Study Duration

The duration of a Bachelor’s Degrees can be up to 4 years, with an additional 3 to 4 years for masters and doctorate. Short Courses are usually between a few weeks and a year.

FREE Career Path Plans

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 a road map to where you want to be.

Possible Paths:

Here’s a possible career preparation path for a high school student interested in becoming an animal embryologist:

1. Attend career Guidance Sessions:

Attend career guidance sessions at school or local community centres to learn about various career options, including animal embryology.

2. Research Possible Careers:

Research the field of animal embryology and related careers to understand the requirements, job prospects, and educational pathways.

3. Explore Educational Paths:

Explore different educational paths to become an animal embryologist, such as obtaining a bachelor’s degree in biology, animal science, or a related field, followed by graduate studies in embryology or reproductive biology.

4. Align High School Subjects:

Take science courses such as biology, chemistry, and physics in high school to build a strong foundation for future studies in animal embryology. Math courses will also be beneficial.

5. Obtain High School Diploma or Equivalent:

Focus on completing high school with good grades and obtaining a high school diploma or equivalent qualification.

6. Learn About Animals:

Learn about different animal species and their reproductive biology, as well as the specific animals commonly studied in animal embryology, such as livestock, poultry, and laboratory animals.

7. Align Post-School Path:

Decide whether to enter the job market directly after completing education, pursue further studies (such as graduate or professional degrees), or start a business related to animal embryology.

8. Gain Experience:

Gain experience through volunteering at animal shelters, farms, or research laboratories, participating in internships, or seeking mentorship opportunities with professionals in the field.

9. Pursue Extracurricular Activities:

Participate in extracurricular activities related to science, biology, or animal care, such as science clubs, animal clubs, or volunteer work at veterinary clinics.

10. Join Professional Associations:

Join professional associations related to animal science, biology, or embryology to network with professionals and stay updated on industry trends and research.

11. Gain Specialised Skills:

Acquire specialised skills in techniques such as embryo manipulation, in vitro fertilisation, and genetic engineering through additional training or coursework.

12. Network with Professionals:

Network with professionals in the field of animal embryology through conferences, workshops, and online forums to learn from their experiences and build connections.

13. Enter the Job Market or Continue Studies:

After completing education and gaining the necessary experience, enter the job market by applying for positions in research institutions, universities, government agencies, or private companies. Alternatively, consider pursuing further studies to advance career opportunities.

14. Stay Updated and Pursue Continuing Education:

Stay updated on advancements in the field of animal embryology by attending conferences, workshops, and continuing education courses to maintain knowledge and skills throughout your career.

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 laboratory skills you will need as a embryologist 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 on selected species. These sessions are offered by the place of employment, after you have successfully applied.

Apprenticeship is also possible where you need to learn skills from a more senior embryologist or expert.

Join the Embryologists Group in the OZT Community 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

High School Certificate 0%
Diploma or Short Courses 0%
Degree or Higher Studies 0%

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 the OZT Community.

Professional Associations

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 embryology and fertility.

How do I start to prepare for this Career?

If you do decide on following this career, then OZT can assist you in figuring out a path to prepare, as well as help you to gain further knowledge about the career and the animals you will be working with. We do this by offering you FREE career development tools. There are almost a dozen free tools, but these are the three primary ones:

CAREER PATH PLAN

Use the career path plan above on this profile as an example to follow, or to work out your own path.

COST; Free

ACCESS: Open to visitors and Members 

SHORT COURSES

Access easy-to-use short courses to make your career preparation easier! The basic information in each course is free, but the rewards can only be unlocked as an OZT member!

COST; Free

ACCESS: Open to visitors and Members 

STUDY GUIDE

Get a supercharged study guide that fits into the career path plan! Now that's really upping your preparation game! Join us for free to gain access!

COST; Free

ACCESS: Members Only

But, if you are still uncertain about choosing this specific career, and even where to start, then have a look at our special series of WHAT NEXT courses (link below). They take you through all of the questions you might have on how to choose the right career, what to do while at and after school, and even how to start your own business.

Join the OZT community and Embryologist Group

Join us as a special member and learn more about becoming an embryologist.

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 Embryologist, 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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Contributions by expert members are always appreciated to allow the Students to make informed decisions. Please add your contribution through the attached Form:

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