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Career profile Biology Professor

Also known as Anatomy Instructor, Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Biological Sciences Professor, Biology Instructor, Biology Professor, Instructor, Lecturer, Physiology Instructor, Professor

Biology Professor

Also known as Anatomy Instructor, Assistant Professor, Associate Professor

Interests Profile
  • Social
  • Investigative
  • Artistic
Pay Range
$46,430 - $179,450 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Speaking
  • Learning Strategies
  • Instructing
Knowledge Areas
  • Biology
  • Mathematics
  • Chemistry
Core tasks
  • Evaluate and grade students' class work, laboratory work, projects, assignments, and papers.
  • Prepare and deliver lectures to undergraduate or graduate students on topics such as anatomy, therapeutic recreation, and conditioning theory.
  • Plan, evaluate, and revise curricula, course content, course materials, and methods of instruction.
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What does a Biology Professor do?

Biology Professors teach courses in biological sciences.

In addition, Biology Professors includes both teachers primarily engaged in teaching and those who do a combination of teaching and research.

What kind of tasks does a Biology Professor perform regularly?

Biology Professors are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:

  • Evaluate and grade students' class work, laboratory work, projects, assignments, and papers.
  • Prepare and deliver lectures to undergraduate or graduate students on topics such as anatomy, therapeutic recreation, and conditioning theory.
  • Plan, evaluate, and revise curricula, course content, course materials, and methods of instruction.
  • Prepare materials for laboratory activities and course materials, such as syllabi, homework assignments, and handouts.
  • Initiate, facilitate, and moderate classroom discussions.
  • Supervise students' laboratory work.
  • Maintain student attendance records, grades, and other required records.
  • Keep abreast of developments in the field by reading current literature, talking with colleagues, giving presentations at conferences, and serving on committees in professional associations.
  • Compile, administer, and grade examinations or assign this work to others.
  • Supervise undergraduate or graduate teaching, internship, and research work.
  • Assist students who need extra help with their coursework outside of class.
  • Advise students on academic and vocational curricula, and on career issues.
  • Maintain regularly scheduled office hours to advise and assist students.
  • Conduct research in a particular field of knowledge and publish findings in scholarly journals, books, or electronic media.
  • Collaborate with colleagues to address teaching and research issues.
  • Select and obtain materials and supplies, such as textbooks and performance pieces.
  • Serve on academic or administrative committees that deal with institutional policies, departmental matters, and academic issues.
  • Provide students course-related experiences, such as field trips, outside the classroom.
  • Write grant proposals to procure external research funding and review others' grant proposals.
  • Review papers for publication in journals.
  • Participate in student recruitment, registration, and placement activities.
  • Maintain or repair lab equipment.

The above responsibilities are specific to Biology Professors. More generally, Biology Professors are involved in several broader types of activities:

Training and Teaching Others
Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
Working with Computers
Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
Processing Information
Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others
Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.

What is a Biology Professor salary?

The median salary for a Biology Professor is $85,600, and the average salary is $101,320. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Biology Professor salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Biology Professors earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Biology Professors earn less than $46,430 per year, 25% earn less than $61,380, 75% earn less than $126,200, and 90% earn less than $179,450.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Biology Professors is expected to change by 12.7%, and there should be roughly 6,700 open positions for Biology Professors every year.

Median annual salary
$85,600
Typical salary range
$46,430 - $179,450
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)
12.7%

What personality traits are common among Biology Professors?

Interests

Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.

Compared to most occupations, those who work as a Biology Professor are usually higher in their Social and Investigative interests.

Biology Professors typically have very strong Social interests. Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.

Also, Biology Professors typically have very strong Investigative interests. Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

Values

People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Compared to most people, those working as a Biology Professor tend to value Working Conditions, Independence, and Recognition.

Most importantly, Biology Professors very strongly value Working Conditions. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions.

Second, Biology Professors strongly value Independence. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions.

Lastly, Biology Professors strongly value Recognition. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious.

Psychological Demands

Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.

In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as Biology Professors must consistently demonstrate qualities such as achievement/effort, integrity, and persistence.

Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of Biology Professors, ranked by importance:

Achievement/Effort
Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Persistence
Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Independence
Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.

What education and training do Biology Professors need?

Many Biology Professors have earned a graduate degree. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a doctoral degree, such as a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D..

Biology Professors may need some on-the-job training, but most candidates will already have the required skills, knowledge, work-related experience, and/or training.

Educational degrees among Biology Professors

  • 0.6% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 1.4% completed high school or secondary school
  • 2.0% completed some college coursework
  • 1.8% earned a Associate's degree
  • 14.6% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 32.1% earned a Master's degree
  • 47.4% earned a doctorate or professional degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Biology Professors

Biology Professors may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as biology, mathematics, or chemistry knowledge.

The list below shows several areas in which most Biology Professors might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.

Biology
Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
Mathematics
Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Chemistry
Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
Education and Training
Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Computers and Electronics
Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

Important Abilities needed by Biology Professors

Biology Professors must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.

For example, Biology Professors need abilities such as oral expression, oral comprehension, and written comprehension in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Biology Professors, ranked by their relative importance.

Oral Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Oral Comprehension
The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Written Comprehension
The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Written Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
Speech Clarity
The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.

Critical Skills needed by Biology Professors

Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.

Biology Professors frequently use skills like speaking, learning strategies, and instructing to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Biology Professors, ranked by their relative importance.

Speaking
Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Learning Strategies
Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.
Instructing
Teaching others how to do something.
Writing
Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Active Learning
Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

What is the source of this information?

The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.

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