The most common type of marine biologist qualification is a bachelor’s degree. These degrees are usually only available at the graduate level, not at the undergraduate level. Other skills, such as the ability to work underwater or the ability to design marine biology tools, can assist a biologist in moving up the career ladder. Even so, they aren’t required for working as a marine biologist.
The most basic qualifications for a marine biologist are educational. This type of biologist usually needs a Ph.D. or at least a master’s degree. When applying to more advanced programs, having an undergraduate degree in biology or at least a scientific field is advantageous in some cases, but an undergraduate degree alone is rarely sufficient for work in this field. A Ph.D. is one of the most versatile marine biologist credentials because it denotes a high level of knowledge. This enables a person to teach, conduct research, or work in the field of marine biology in almost any capacity.
Other than academic degrees, educational marine biologist qualifications may be required in some cases. Some jobs, for example, may require academic experience working with maps or specific marine species. Obtaining this experience after graduation is also a viable option. As qualifications, concrete examples of one’s experience, such as working on a paper or dissertation, can be useful.
Internships and special training programs in marine biology are not required, but they are advantageous when looking for work. Certification or positive recommendations can help make a person appear more qualified for a job. Obtaining any type of experience is a necessary part of becoming a marine biologist, but experience that can be easily quantified and evaluated is easier to include on a resume.
Qualifications unrelated to the study of marine biology may also be required of marine biologists. Scuba training, for example, is usually required in any situation where a biologist works deep underwater. Similarly, depending on the research being conducted, boating licenses may be valuable. Because some biologists never work in actual water, these credentials are frequently optional.
Certain aspects of marine biology necessitate specialized training. Aquarium workers require not only broad marine biology knowledge, but also artistic and engineering skills in order to create environments for captive species. Biologists who work with marine animals or mammals in general must have prior experience with animal training and safety. Because jobs in marine biology can require a wide range of skills, obtaining the necessary qualifications often entails focusing on a specific area of the field.