Microbiology Job Overview Microbiology is a laboratory discipline that involves studying microscopic organisms such as ...
Microbiology Job Overview
Microbiology is a laboratory discipline that involves studying microscopic organisms such as viruses, bacteria, algae and fungi. There are many different types of microbiology jobs, which can range from research scientist jobs tolaboratory technician jobs, for example. Microbiologists combine the study of biology, physics, chemistry and medicine to perform research projects that lead to the development of vaccines, pharmaceutical drugs, biofuels and even agricultural products. Within the general field of microbiology, scientists often choose to specialize in sub-disciplines, such as immunology or bioinformatics. During a typical workday, a microbiologist might:
- Make cultures of microorganisms and bacteria in a controlled environment to be used in testing
- Investigate the origin of microorganisms, the source of disease and the effect of antibiotics
- Provide clinical laboratory services for healthcare professionals to help diagnose and treat various conditions
- Use complex laboratory equipment such as electron microscopes, high pressure liquid chromatographs and thermo cyclers to study microscopic organisms
- Perform tests on the environment, water and food to detect possible contamination
- Implement and evaluate the outcomes of various clinical trials
- Prepare research papers and reports on the outcome of various clinical studies
- Supervise the activities of other laboratory workers
Microbiology Job Education Requirements
Most jobs in microbiology require a four-year bachelor's degree at a minimum. For jobs in academia or research and development, an advanced post-secondary degree, including post-doctoral work, may be required. Laboratory technicians who work in microbiology labs may only require a two-year associate's degree or certificate to qualify for a job.
Microbiology Job Market
Employment prospects for microbiologists and other related scientists are excellent in Canada. Government and government-funded agencies employ a large number of microbiologists and technical staff, especially for work that involves contamination and disease. In addition, pharmaceutical and healthcare research activities are growing rapidly, offering additional opportunities for microbiology employment. Environmental consulting agencies also provide a growing number of jobs in microbiology. Demand for workers with skills and experience in microbiology is expected to grow at a much higher than average rate over the coming decade.
Microbiology Job Salary Information
The salary range for microbiology jobs is approximately C$31,000 to C$75,000 per year, with a median salary of C$43,000 per year. Factors that affect pay scales for microbiology jobs include educational background and experience, geographic location, and the industry in which a microbiologist or technologist works. Highly skilled microbiologists who manage laboratories or research projects often have annual salaries exceeding C$100,000 per year.