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Philippines Universities & Colleges Guide

BS in Biology in the Philippines

The Bachelor of Science in Biology is a four-year college course that offers general education in different biological sciences such as zoology, botany, physiology, genetics, histology, microbiology and ecology. The program offers strong foundation for advancement and specialization in biotechnology, genetic engineering, computational biology, genomics, molecular biology, and neurobiology.

Biology is offered as a Bachelors Degree either in Science or in Arts. The Bachelor of Science (BS) in Biology offers more comprehensive science subjects as foundation and is preferred by those who wish to pursue scientific careers or continue into graduate programs. In comparison, the Bachelor of Arts (AB) in Biology is ideal for students planning a career in health care, law, policy or secondary science teaching and offers lesser science units but additional liberal arts subjects such as history and foreign language.

The BS Biology curriculum presents balance treatment of various topics such as the CHED-mandated general subjects; the essential Biology-core courses with laboratory classes; non-Biology tool subjects; science electives and Special Problem or Thesis Presentation. Students will be exposed to the different aspects of Biology through lectures, laboratory work, research, and field trips.

Graduates of BS Biology can work in research, academe and Biology-based industry, or choose to continue with Medical education.

Is Biology a profession?


Biology is not a profession, but working in this field does require very unique knowledge.
Many people would go on to professional jobs in various related fields, depending on their specialization and/or masters degree education.

What are the admission requirements for BS Bio?


Requirements at each school may differ, but these are the common requirements:
  • Must be a high school graduate.
    Those who did not complete high school education may opt to first attend Alternative Learning System (ALS) and pass the Philippine Educational Placement Test (PEPT) to qualify for college. However, some universities only offer selected courses for PEPT passers admission.
  • Must pass the college entrance examination
  • Must pass the interview conducted by the college / university admission officer
  • Medical laboratory results and health certificate
  • Good Moral certificate from the previous school (sometimes from enrollees Barangay)
  • Some schools require particular rating in the National Secondary Assessment Test (NSAT)
  • Some schools require particular high school grade or gross point average


What skills will help you succeed in this course?


  • Critical, analytical and problem solving skills
  • Ability to carry out mathematical and statistical computations
  • Adequate technical writing skills
  • Be able to make observations and distinguish small differences between samples and events
  • Objective viewpoint for discerning information and analyzing biases of other people
  • Ability to perform various laboratory task independently or as part of a team
  • Effective oral communication abilities


How difficult is this course?


Most students of BS in Biology describe this course as difficult yet interesting. The program requires lot of critical thinking and analysis, especially in laboratory classes and research. It is also necessary to understand and memorize numerous scientific names, terms and procedures. However the investigative approach in the curriculum makes this course very engaging.

How long does it take to complete BS in Biology in the Philippines?


The BS Bio program takes 4 years to complete. Schools which use the trimester system complete the program in a shorter time.

On the Job training / Internship


On-the-job training (OJT) or practicum for BS Bio is not mandated by CHED, however there are schools that offers 300 hours of Practicum Program to assist students with securing internship positions in different workplaces, by coordinating their affiliation to a variety of clinical areas/agencies.

Specializations:


  • Botany – provide students with an extensive knowledge in the science of plants and their interrelationships with other organism, its classification, evolution, structure and functions.
  • Cell and Molecular Biology – focuses on the study of cells, its physiology, histology and various genetic information at the molecular level
  • Ecology – concentrates on the study of concepts, principles and laws of environmental science and the interaction between organisms and the environment.
  • Entomology – focuses on the study of insects, including integrated pest management, insect pathology, environmental assessment, toxicology, apiculture, and insect ecology.
  • General Biology – is a program designed for students with broad interests in Biology yet do not wish to be constrained by the specialized requirements of the other majors and who desire maximum freedom to pursue a particular educational goal.
  • Genetics – concentrates on the mechanism of heredity and its variation, cytogenetic, mutation, nature of genes, population genetics and evolutionary genetics, biometrical procedures.
  • Human Biology – focuses on the application of biological principles to practical human concerns. The course underlines human physiology and the role that humans play in the biosphere.
  • Marine Biology – concentrates on the scientific study of organisms in ocean and other brackish body of water; its ecology, evolution, and physiology.
  • Plant Biology – a program designed to develop the ability of the students to understand the basic principles of plant science for better appreciation of plants as an integral component of various ecosystems.
  • Systematics – concentrates on the principles of nomenclature and classification of various organisms; the nature of categories (species through family); phylogeny and phylogenetic methods
  • Wildlife Biology – provides extensive learning about the principles, methods, and tools of wildlife research, management, and conservation.
  • Zoology – concentrates on the general principles of animal biology with emphasis on the understanding of development and the evolutionary blueprint of the animal kingdom.


Is there a board examination for BS Bio?


There is no board examination for BS in Biology graduates.
Those who wish to teach Biology subjects in Elementary or High school level should take the Licensure Examination for Teachers after taking additional 18 Education units.

To work in the government sector, one have to pass the Civil Service Examination to qualify for civil service eligibility necessary for admission to government service such as in the Bureau of Ecosystems Research and Development, or at the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

Career opportunities for BS Biology graduates


  • Entry Level jobs

    Jobs requiring no prior to minimal level of experience:
    • Research Assistant – helps science researchers in developing and experimental use of products or procedures
    • Teaching Laboratory Technician – supports science teachers and students at the academe by ensuring that that all laboratory equipments are ready and functioning properly, and that the right materials are available for a particular lesson
    • Scientific Laboratory Technician – assist laboratory-based investigations by doing routine technical and experimental tasks.
    • Quality Control Lab Technician – test product samples for chemical and physical properties and analyze data for normal and abnormal results
    • Junior Clinical Research Associate – works on pre-trial procedures, by setting up and organizing clinical trial sites (with some supervision), archiving documents and correspondence.
    • Animal Technologist – is responsible for the care and welfare of laboratory animals used in medical, veterinary and science research and experiments.
  • Mid-Level Positions

    Require trainings and prior job experience of a few years:
    • Science / Biology teachers – teach Biology or other science subjects at elementary or high school level after taking additional Education unit and passing Licensure examination for Teachers.
    • Clinical Research Associate – employed by pharmaceutical companies to run clinical trials to test new or existing drugs for their effectiveness, risks, benefits, and to ensure they are safe to allowed on to the market.
    • Medical Research Scientists – work to develop new, or improve existing, drugs, treatments or other medically related products to increase scientific knowledge on topics related to medicine through the use of experiments.
    • Pharmacologists – investigate how potential medicines interact with biological systems, using cells or whole animals to predict what effect the drug might have in humans
    • Product Development Scientists – work with research scientists to develop new ideas and scientific discoveries, which can be utilized in the manufacture of new products.
    • Process Development Scientists – responsible for identifying and developing new procedures for product manufacture, as well as implementing process controls to ensure that quality products are manufactured in a reproducible manner.
    • Field Trials Botanical Officers – develop and manage research trials on plants in the field or laboratory.
    • Plant breeders/geneticists – work to improve the quality and performance of existing agricultural and horticultural crops as well as create new varieties.
    • Ecologists – are concerned with ecosystems as a whole, the abundance and distribution of organisms (people, plants, animals), and the relationships between organisms and their environment.
    • Soil Scientist – gathers, interprets and evaluates information about the chemistry, biology and physics of soils to inform and influence issues as diverse as agricultural production, environmental quality, human health, climate change, land remediation and biodiversity.
    • Toxicologists – plan and carry out laboratory and field studies to identify, monitor and evaluate the impact of toxic materials and radiation on human and animal health, the environment, and the impact of future technology.
    • Technical authors – interprets and writes technical information or applications in a way that is easy to understand.
    • Science Writer or Scientific Journalist – researches, writes and edits scientific news articles and features for business, trade and professional publications, scientific and technical journals, and the general media.
  • Advanced Positions

    Require years of extensive experience and practice:
    • Microbiologists – study microorganisms, including viruses, bacteria, fungi, algae and protozoa. They focus on the biology of microorganisms at both the molecular and cellular level, as well as their ecology.
    • Clinical Biochemists – carry out complex analytical work. They analyze and interpret data relating to patients' samples to assist with the investigation, diagnosis and treatment of diseases.
    • Clinical Scientists in Histocompatibility and Immunogenetics (H&I) – are specialists in tissue typing, a critical role in haemopoietic stem cell and organ transplantation.
    • Higher Education Professors – facilitate learning and carry out research activities in universities and some colleges of further education. They teach academic subjects to undergraduate and postgraduate courses.
    • Clinical Molecular Geneticists – examine DNA to identify genetic abnormalities which may be part of inherited diseases and help predict whether any abnormal genes can be passed on to the next generation.
    • Environmental Health Practitioners – act as advisers, educators, consultants, managers and enforcement officers, ensuring people are able to live, work and play in safe, healthy environments.
    • Senior/Chief Laboratory Technicians – undertake similar technical tasks but more complex duties, which may involve some analysis and will generally include supervision and management responsibilities for a team of staff and the laboratory.
    • Senior Clinical Research Associate – responsible for any of the Clinical Research tasks plus supervising, training and mentoring junior staff, project management of whole trials possibly on an international scale, protocol development and design of case report forms.
  • Jobs not related to biology, that graduates can apply to

    • Call center agent – answers phone calls and inquiries of clients and provides customer support, usually to people from other countries
    • Administrative Staff – personnel responsible for the organization and management of office duties and tasks; positions that include office secretary, personal assistant and office clerk
    • Freelancer working online – doing online jobs for clients abroad, such as data entry, article writing, SEO, customer support, administrative support etc., which mainly depends on your skills
  • Career Opportunities Abroad

    There is limited demand for Filipinos in Biology-related jobs abroad. Only a handful of vacancies are available for jobs such as biologist, microbiologist, zoologist, laboratory technician, industrial microbiologist, soil-testing lab technician, water purification lab technician, food technologist and product development officer (source).

    The countries where jobs are available are Singapore, Malaysia and the Gulf countries.
  • Salary Levels

    For fresh graduates of BS Biology in the Philippines, the salary range for entry level jobs with no experience in the science industry such as Laboratory Technician is about php10,000-php14,000 monthly (source). A non-experienced Research Assistant may earn php9,000-php15,000 while those with 1-4 year experience have a salary range of about php10,000- php17,000 monthly (source). A Science Research Specialist earns about php18,000 monthly and the more experienced Research Associate have a monthly salary of php32,500 (source). Microbiologist salary is 6th on the most highest earning job in the Philippines with an average of about Php34,000 monthly (source).

    Salaries for those who work abroad are generally much higher.

Reviews of BS in Biology graduates:

Angela Pendre
Studied BS in Biology
at Centro Escolar University , Manila
Graduated: 2010

About my college education:
The first thing I still remember in my college life is the professors. They were very good to all the students. Actually, my field of study is not basically as hard as others. Only needed was focus. I really enjoyed exploring myself with this my education because it taught me how to get myself in control whenever there's a temptation around me. The BS in Bio is basically learning and discussing the different forms of lives. How it exist and how it formed.

My current job:
I'm currently working as a team leader in a call center.

Am I using what I learned in college:
I think so. I got trained well.

How long did it take to find a job after graduation:
3 months

Do I recommend studying BS in Biology:
I would love to recommend my course but the sad thing is it is limited in terms of job opportunities as it is a premed course. We need professionals that have PRC license. It's better to take a course that has specialization. Well that was what I observed.
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