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Life Scientists examine the anatomy, physiology and biochemistry of humans, animals, plants and other living organisms to better understand how living organisms function and interact with each other and the environment in which they live.
Studies the origin, anatomy, physiology, reproduction and behaviour of living organisms and the ways in which they interact with the environment in which they live.
Studies the anatomy and physiology of humans.
Specialisations: Embryologist, Neuroanatomist
Studies the biochemistry of living organisms and the molecular structure and function of related components.
Specialisations: Enzyme Chemist, Protein Chemist
Studies the anatomy, physiology and characteristics of living organisms and isolated biological molecules, and develops new materials for applying to a range of purposes.
Specialisations: Cell Geneticist, Molecular Biologist, Molecular Geneticist
Studies the anatomy, physiology, biochemistry and ecology of plants.
Specialisations: Plant Pathologist, Plant Physiologist, Plant Taxonomist
Studies the anatomy, physiology, functions, characteristics, behaviour and environments of all forms of life living in the sea and connected water bodies.
Studies microscopic forms of life such as bacteria, viruses and protozoa.
Specialisations: Bacteriologist (Non-medical)
Studies the anatomy, physiology, characteristics, ecology, behaviour and environments of animals.
Specialisations: Entomologist, Mammalogist, Ornithologist
Includes Anatomist, Animal Behaviourist, Neuroscientist, Parasitologist, Pharmacologist (Non-clinical), Physiologist, Toxicologist
Earnings are for full-time workers before tax, excluding superannuation. Earnings are a guide only and can vary greatly.
Likely change in the number of jobs over the next 5 years, based on the Department of Jobs and Small Business projections.
Skill Level is the education or training usually needed to do well in this job. Relevant experience is sometimes viewed just as highly.
Employment Size is the number of people who work in this job in Australia.
An above average unemployment rate shows people who do this job are more likely to be out of work than people who do other jobs.
Full-time workers usually work 35 hours or more a week (in all their jobs combined).
This is a very small occupation employing 6,600 workers. The number of workers has fallen over the past 5 years. Over the next 5 years (to May 2022) the number of workers is expected to grow moderately to 6,900. Around 3,000 job openings are likely over this time from workers leaving and new jobs being created (a large number for an occupation of this size).
A Bachelor Degree or higher is required and nearly all workers have a university degree. Sometimes relevant experience or on-the-job training is also needed.
If you are interested in this style of work, there are a wide range of training options available that could lead to this or a similar job. The pathway that is right for you will depend on your skills and interests.
It is a good idea to speak to industry bodies, employers, and workers to learn more about the skills and qualifications you will need.
Employers look for Life Scientists who can communicate clearly, work well in a team and have strong interpersonal skills.
The topics, subjects, or knowledge areas workers rate as most important are shown below.
Plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, how they rely on and work with each other and the environment.
Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change. Danger signs and disposal methods.
English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.
Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Skills can be improved through training or experience. The skills workers rate as most important are shown below.
Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
Reading work related information.
Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
The physical and social abilities workers rate as the most important are shown below.
Use rules to solve problems.
Make general rules or come up with answers from lots of detailed information.
Read and understand written information.
Come up with different ways of grouping things.
Order or arrange things (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 19-1020.01 - Biologists.
Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.
The work activities workers rate as most important are shown below.
Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.
Looking at, working with, and understanding data or information.
Comparing objects, actions, or events, looking for differences between them or changes over time.
Giving information to supervisors, co-workers, and staff by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
The physical and social demands workers face most often are shown below.
How often do you use electronic mail?
How often do you work indoors with access to heating or cooling?
How often do you talk with people face-to-face?
How often do you talk on the telephone?
How important is being very exact or highly accurate?
Work values are important to a person’s feeling of satisfaction. All six values are shown below.
Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.
Advancement and the potential to lead. Workers are recognised for the work that they do, they may give directions and instructions to others, and they are looked up to in their company and their community.
Work alone and make decisions. Workers are able to try out their own ideas, make decisions on their own, and work with little or no supervision.
Serve and work with others. Workers usually get along well with each other, do things to help other people, and are rarely pressured to do things that go against their sense of right and wrong.
Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.
Supportive management that stands behind employees. Workers are treated fairly by their company, they are supported by management, and have supervisors who train them well.
Interests are the style or type of work we prefer to do. All interest areas are shown below.
Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.
Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants, animals, and materials like wood, tools, and machinery.
Following set procedures and routines. Working with numbers and details more than with ideas, usually following rules.
Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.
Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.
Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.