Zoology Overview

If you love watching the Discovery Channel and want to know everything you can about animals, Zoology may be the major for you!

This not necessarily the major to pursue if you want to be a zookeeper; instead you will get the opportunity to study the science and anatomy of animals. Zoology is serious science where you will study whole organisms as well as animal behavior, anatomy and internal makeup. Animals studied range from the sponge to the kangaroo and everything in between. Some of the topics you will encounter include natural habitats, conditions needed for animal survival, adaption and evolution.

Some courses you may take include: animal behavior, ecology, vertebrate zoology, ornithology, the study of mammals, herpetology, genetics, advanced math, chemistry, physics and evolutionary biology.

Concentrations in this major include: Entomology, Animal Physiology, Animal Behavior and Ethology, and Wildlife Biology.

Required Skills

This exciting field allows you to take a look at the most intricate and delicate details of how animals function. As you learn about animals you will also be considering evolution and their environment. Your studies will allow you to see how animals interact with their own species as well as other animals and plants in their environment. You should have good communication skills in this major. Zoology will require you to do a lot of scientific writing with research to back up your ideas, as well as a lot of lab reports. This major will require you to attend lectures and participate in labs. Classes and group work will help you learn to work with others and get comfortable listening to opinions and new ideas.

A clear fascination with the natural world and animals it will help you to succeed. Students who are passionate about the work they are doing tend to do better. You will dissect all sorts of animals as well as collect invertebrates in the field. Hard work is necessary in this major. You need a clear understanding of the basic biology and chemistry as well as advanced math skills to continue on in the field.


After working hard during your undergraduate career, you will be prepared to enter numerous scientific fields. You could work in anything from medicine to environmental science. However, the most popular field is zoology or wildlife biologist.

The job outlook for zoologist is expected to grow up to 7% by 2020. Zoologists will be needed to study the impact of urbanization and population on wildlife habitats. However, competition may be high for positions in some areas. Students with work job experience may have an easier time finding a job.

Graduates with a degree in Zoology average $35,171 as a starting salary with a mid-career salary of $69,916.

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Example Careers

Here is a small sample of the careers that a degree in Zoology might open up.

Biological Science Teachers, Postsecondary
Biological Scientists, All Other
Natural Sciences Managers
Zoologists and Wildlife Biologists
Salary data is estimated by College Factual using 2013 data provided by PayScale.
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