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Bioscience is the section of science that relates to living organisms. There are many different disciplines within it.
Some bioscience relates to animals and plants, such as botany (the study of plants), zoology (animal science) and ecology (ecological science).
Some are concerned with the human body and health, such as immunology (the study of the immune system), and biomedical engineering (a form of scientific engineering that is used to solve problems in medicine through such actions as designing instruments and software).
Forensic science is the use of a broad range of sciences to provide evidence to help solve a case within the justice system.
A career in bioscience could result in a candidate working in a laboratory, or working in the wild observing animals – the possibilities are vast.
Employers of bioscientists include pharmaceutical companies, food and drink companies, cosmetics and toiletries businesses, contract laboratories, hospitals, cancer research institutes and universities.
How to get into bioscience
It is necessary to get a degree in biology, however there are many different courses in the various specific disciplines, so it is possible for a candidate to choose the correct course to tailor their training towards the area that they wish to get into.
Some courses will require their students to undertake work experience placements. It can also be beneficial for students to organise their own experience separately during the holidays if their course doesn’t require them to do so, as professional experience will help make a candidate’s application stand out.
There are even bursaries and grants available to do this. Go to the ‘Undergraduate Studentships’ page on the Society of Biology website for further information on this.
Qualifications and experience
Entrance requirements to a bioscience course will vary between institutions and subjects and should be checked on UCAS, however biology should have been studied at A-Level, and other science and maths subjects can be beneficial as well.
The average salary of a candidate who works in bioscience is £25,000, however the salaries vary across the careers. A forensic scientist’s average salary is £55,000, while a botanist with a few years’ experience can earn between £25,000 and £30,000.