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Botanist Job Description

A botanist is a scientist who studies the genetics, structure, function, habitation, ecology, adaptation and evolution of plants. Botanists study different types of plants including algae, fungi, lichen, ferns, and mosses to understand and explain their structures and functions, and their interactions with us, and to find out information useful for producing food, fiber and medicine for a growing human population.

A botanist should be curious, analytical, methodical, patient and persistent, and have the ability to handle and operate scientific equipment. They should be able to work outdoors in the field, collecting samples or performing field trials, and indoors in a laboratory, performing experiments with plants species.

Famous botanists include Theophrastus (ancient Greek scientist who is considered as the father of botany), Robert Hooke (discovered cells in living plant tissue), Charles Darwin (evolution by natural selection), Richard spruce (Amazon flora), Luther Burbank (pioneer in agricultural science), and Barbara McClintock (genetic structure of maize).

Pursue a career in botany if you have aptitude for science and interest in the scientific study of plant. You should be someone who is interested in working with microscopes.

What does a Botanist do?

Botanists may do some or all of the following:

Where does a Botanist work?

Places of work for botanists include:

Working Conditions

Botanists may work normal office hours or flexible hours including evenings and weekends. They work indoors in laboratories, classrooms, and offices and outdoors in the field collecting samples or performing field trials. Botanist may travel for field work to explore and study plants.

What is Required to Become a Botanist?

To become a botanist, you will need a master’s degree in botany or a related discipline. A PhD is required for administrative positions and to conduct independent research.

Secondary school students interested in studying botany should take preparatory subjects such as English, biology, geography, agricultural science, physics, chemistry, algebra, calculus and statistics.

Modules

Just to give you an idea, some of the classes that you’ll be taking in college may include:


Specializations

A botanist may specialize to become any of the following:

Knowledge, Skills and Attributes

Botanists need to have:



References

Alternative Careers


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