9 Science Careers

Scientist using micro pipette with DNA
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Science careers include those in the life sciences, which encompasses the study of living organisms, and in the physical sciences, which deals with non-living matter. Whichever branch you want to work in, you have many choices. Take a look at some of them.

Biochemist or Biophysicist

Biochemists and biophysicists study the chemical and physical properties of living things and biological processes. To work in this field, you will need, at least, a bachelor's degree in applied science.

This will qualify you for a job in applied research, product development, management or inspection. You will need to earn a Ph.D. if you want to do independent research. Biochemists and biophysicists earned a median annual salary of $84,940 in 2014.
Learn More About Becoming a Biochemist or Biophysicist


Chemists studies chemicals and how they can be used to improve our lives. You will need a master's degree or a Ph.D. in chemistry for most jobs, but you might be able to find one with a bachelor's degree. This will limit your choices, however. Chemists earned a median annual salary of $73,480 in 2014.
Learn More About Becoming a Chemist


Conservationists help landowners and governments find ways to protect natural resources such as soil and water. To get a job in this field, you will have to earn a bachelor's degree in ecology, natural resource management, agriculture, biology or environmental science.

 Conservationists earned a median annual salary of $61,860 in 2014.
Learn More About Becoming a Conservationist

Environmental Scientist

Environmental scientists identify, reduce and eradicate pollutants and hazards that threaten the environment or the population's health. You can get an entry-level job with a bachelor's degree in environmental science, biology, engineering, chemistry or physics, but if you hope to advance, you will need a master's degree.

 Environmental scientists earned a median annual salary of $66,250 in 2014.
Learn More About Becoming an Environmental Scientist

Environmental Technician

Environmental technicians monitor the environment and investigate sources of pollution, working under environmental scientists' supervision. You will have to earn an associate degree or a certificate in applied science or science-related technology, but some jobs require a bachelor's degree in chemistry or biology. Environmental technicians earned a median annual salary of $42,190 in 2014.
Learn More About Becoming an Environmental Technician

Forensic Scientist

Forensic scientists investigate crimes by collecting and analyzing physical evidence. They are sometimes called crime scene investigators. Many employers prefer applicants who have at least two years of specialized training or an associate degree in applied science or science-related technology. Others will only hire those who have a bachelor's degrees in chemistry, biology, or forensic science. Forensic scientists earned a median annual salary of $55,360 in 2014.
Learn More About Becoming a Forensic Scientist


Geoscientists search for natural resources or help environmental scientists clean up the environment.

To get an entry-level research position you will need to get a master's degree in geology or earth science. Geoscientists earned a median salary of $89,910 in 2014.
Learn More About Becoming a Geoscientist


Hydrologists study bodies of water, both on the earth's surface and underground. They look at their circulation, distribution and physical properties. To work in this field, you will need a master's degree in geoscience, environmental science or engineering with a concentration in hydrology or water sciences. Hydrologists earned a median annual salary of $78,370 in 2014.
Learn More About Becoming a Hydrologist

Medical Scientist

Medical scientists do research to determine the causes of diseases. They also look for ways to prevent and cure them. To work as a medical scientist, you will need either a Ph.D.

in a biological science or a medical degree (M.D.). Median annual earnings were $79,930 in 2014.
Learn More About Becoming a Medical Scientist

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/oco/ and
Employment and Training Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, O*NET Online, on the Internet at http://online.onetcenter.org/ (visited April 6, 2015).

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Comparing Science Careers
 Minimum EducationMedian Salary (2014)
Biochemist or BiophysicistBachelor's Degree in Applied Science$84,940
ChemistMaster's Degree or Ph.D. in Chemistry$73,480
ConservationistBachelor's Degree in Ecology, Agriculture, Environmental Science or Related Fields of Study$61,860
Environmental ScientistBachelor's Degree in Environmental Science, Biology, Engineering, Chemistry or Physics$66,250
Environmental TechnicianAssociate Degree or Certificate in Applied Science or Science-related Technology$42,190
Forensic ScientistAssociate Degree or 2 years of Specialized Training in Applied Science or Science-related Technology.$55,360
GeoscientistMaster's Degree in Geology or Earth Science $89,910
HydrologistMaster's Degree in Engineering, Geoscience or Environmental Science With a Concentration in Hydrology or Water Sciences$78,370
Medical ScientistPh.D. in Biological Science or M.D. (Medical Degree)$79,930

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