Major Overview

If you find studying the smallest particles that makeup living organisms fascinating, a major in Biochemistry, Biophysics and Molecular Biology could be for you.

This major dives into minuscule details undetectable to most observers. You get to look at organisms as a whole, but also break them down to look at the chemical reactions that keep the organism alive. Included in this major is the study of chemistry, molecules, biology, and chemical processes. You will learn about different enzymes and how genetic codes are made. You will also learn about different substances like proteins or fats and how they affect the living process. Chemicals that are considered the building blocks of life will be studied in great detail as you advance in your degree.

Some courses that you may take are: genetics, cell biology, biochemistry, microbiology, physics, inorganic chemistry, advanced mathematics, and organic chemistry.

Concentrations of this major include: Molecular Biochemistry, Molecular Biophysics, Structural Biology, Photobiology, and Radiation Biology.

Required Skills

A fascination with the natural world will greatly aid you in your classes. You will get to look at organisms as a whole and break them down to specific chemical reactions. You will need to be able to conduct research and work independently. Although some projects will involve working with a group or a lab partner, you will also spend a lot of time on your own finishing lab work or writing reports.

Working in the lab will allow you to apply what you've learned during class. You will get practice putting theory into practice in order to reinforce the ideas you learn. Writing reports and oral presentations will also be a part of your program. These presentations may be individual or in groups. Work on your writing and public speaking skills while still in college to make this easier for you.

Students with a passion to understand how things live and function will thrive in this major. Don't be intimidated to ask for help when solving unique puzzles. As you get closer to graduating, many programs will offer one-on-one research or independent studies that will allow you to dig deeper into an area of interest. This is a great opportunity to take advantage of to meet personal goals, as well as to attract future employers.

Careers

This degree will set you up to continue your education. If you want to become a biochemist you will need to get a minimum of a master's degree, but most biochemists have a Ph. D.

Other career tracks you could take could be becoming a biological scientist, a clinical laboratory technologist, a forensic scientist, a medical scientist, a pharmacist, a science technician, a physician's assistant, pharmaceutical laboratories, or a nurse. Most jobs in this field will require you to continue your education.

The average reported salary for graduates with a degree in Biochemistry, Biophysics and Molecular Biology is $40,680 as a starting salary and $86,412 as a mid-career salary.

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Major at a Glance

Top statistics for this major

College Ranking by Major

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Yearly Graduations
 11,245
Average Starting Salary
$40,680
Average Mid-Career Salary
$86,412

Example Careers

Here is a small sample of the careers that a degree in Biochemistry, Biophysics & Molecular Biology might open up.

Biochemists and Biophysicists
Biological Science Teachers, Postsecondary
Biological Scientists, All Other
Medical Scientists, Except Epidemiologists
Microbiologists
Natural Sciences Managers
Salary data is estimated by College Factual using 2013 data provided by PayScale.
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