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Microbiologists

Microbiologists
Quick Facts : Microbiologists*
2010 Median Pay$65,920
Entry Level EducationBachelor's degree
Work Experience in Related OccupationNone
Number of Jobs, 201220,300
Job Outlook13% (About as fast as average)
Employment Change2,700


Microbiologists study the growth, development, and other characteristics of microscopic organisms such as bacteria, algae, and fungi. Most microbiologists work on research teams with other scientists and technicians conducting basic research with the aim of increasing scientific knowledge.

What Microbiologists Do

  • Plan and conduct complex research projects, such as developing new drugs to combat infectious diseases
  • Supervise the work of biological technicians and other workers and evaluate the accuracy of their results
  • Identify and classify microorganisms found in specimens collected from humans, water, food, and other sources
  • Monitor the effect of microorganisms on plants, animals, and other microorganisms and on the environment
  • Prepare technical reports, research papers, and recommendations based on their research findings

Work Environment

Microbiologists work in laboratories and offices, where they conduct scientific experiments and analyze the results. Most microbiologists work full time and keep regular hours.
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Job Outlook

Employment of microbiologists is projected to increase by 13 percent from 2010 to 2020, as more will be needed to apply knowledge from basic research to develop biological products and processes that improve our lives.
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Pay

The average salary of microbiologists in May 2010 was $65,920.
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Microbiologists*
Average Annual Salary, May 2010

Microbiologists

65920

Life, Physical, and Social Science Occupations

59516.2857

All Jobs in the U.S.

52312.5223
Microbiologists*
Percent Change in Employment

Microbiologists

13.3005

Life, Physical, and Social Science Occupations

13.36232967887606

All Jobs in the U.S.

15.767561808929724

Becoming a Microbiologists

A bachelor's degree in microbiology or a closely related field is needed for entry-level microbiologist jobs. A Ph.D. is needed to carry out independent research and to work in colleges and universities
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