Jump to content

Menu

Courses for career in zoology?


Tohru
 Share

Recommended Posts

My ds has mentioned several times that he is interested in a career in zoology. I don't really know what courses or books that might help him build on that interest.

 

He doesn't like the biology aspect, but rather is interested in habitat and behaviorism. We own the Apologia Zoology set and he's read them several times. He really needs something a bit more advanced.

 

I'm thinking maybe some biologies of scientists/naturalists, a course that would guide him through general zoology or specific animals, maybe a book on zoology careers...may I please have some other ideas or recommendations? Would prefer secular, but don't really mind too much Christian content.

 

Thanks :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Does he know what zoology (pronounced zo long O ology) is? Having a pre-vet degree, I took zoology in college and was unpleasantly surprised to find it all about evolution and cell biology. If he wants to work in a zoo, he should have a good background in biology and animal husbandry. If he really wants zoology, biology/microbiology and chemistry are going to be the emphasis.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My ds has mentioned several times that he is interested in a career in zoology. I don't really know what courses or books that might help him build on that interest.

 

He doesn't like the biology aspect, but rather is interested in habitat and behaviorism. We own the Apologia Zoology set and he's read them several times. He really needs something a bit more advanced.

 

I'm thinking maybe some biologies of scientists/naturalists, a course that would guide him through general zoology or specific animals, maybe a book on zoology careers...may I please have some other ideas or recommendations? Would prefer secular, but don't really mind too much Christian content.

 

Thanks :)

 

Hi. I have a degree in Biological Sciences and my emphasis was genetics/cellular biology. However, I also worked at the Field Museum in Chicago - the Department of Zoology. Zoology is just a part of Biology. You really get the whole package when you major in Biology. In college, I had to take several years of Chemistry - Inorganic and Organic (in fact, I was only 1 class away from a Minor in Chem), also I had to take 4 Physics classes, college-level Calculus and the Biology classes themselves were supposed to be well-rounded...I took 2 semesters of Basic Biology, Mendelian Genetics, Human Genetics, Microbiology, Zoology, etc, 2 semesters of internships - one was spent working in a genetics lab on DNA Microsatellites - one was spent in the Zoology Dept...

 

Anyway, in a nutshell...the biological sciences are VERY geared towards medical applications, microbiology, biochemistry and there's been a huge burst in genetics.

 

As far as Classical Biology...they're out there (my boss at the Field Museum was a Zoologist), but there's not a lot of money. It's either teaching, writing, some research with teaching - lol.

 

To show how weird the Biology field is, when I graduated from college, I was offered a job as a chemist at Exxon Mobil. :confused:

 

I don't have specific curriculum suggestions. Apologia is really good. 4H has some good material - and someone was saying that they have a vet medicine class. Also, zoos and museums will take volunteers. This is probably the best way to see if you're going to like the field. We had high schoolers come into our lab once for a field trip and some of them were just gagging.

 

Sorry I wrote a book - lol. :tongue_smilie: I think what I'm trying to say is just lots of math and science and try to look for some internships/volunteer work. :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

He doesn't like the biology aspect, but rather is interested in habitat and behaviorism.

 

My B.S. is in Zoology (though I've never had a career in Zoology) and if your son is serious about it, he is going to take a lot of biology classes! Anatomy, Physiology, Cytology, Genetics, Microbiology are some of the courses I took in college, not to mention lots and lots of Chemistry.

 

I'm not entirely sure what you mean by behaviorism, but if what you're getting at is that your son loves learning about animals and their environment and their behavior in that environment, then I would personally choose the word "naturalist" over "zoologist". I'm not being nit-picky, but rather trying to give you an alternative for when you are searching for books. For example, there is a great little paperback book from Usborne called The Young Naturalist that has some really fun activities for budding nature observers. It's a very small book, but it has some good stuff packed into it. I'm not sure if it's at your son's level, though.

 

Anyway, my point is just to try searching for things along that line rather than zoology. I would make sure he has plenty of field guides, and consider having him start his own nature notebook or journal. That is what all the great naturalists through history have done, recording their observations in detail. Of course he can be as detailed - or not - as he wants. I think a good pair of binoculars and/or a microscope might be as good for him as any book. And to the extent possible, let him get out and ramble and explore. I'm thinking of E.O. Wilson as a child down on his belly watching ants with fascination for hours. And the way Darwin cataloged all those barnacles! Those guys were serious about learning about animals. And they did it hands-on.

 

I will try to think of some other books your son might like. Good luck!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My son plans to major in Zoology, then go to Graduate school and ultimately become a Herpetologist. He doesn't want to major in biology, but is very aware of all the non-animal science he will have to take. To prepare he is reading lots of books about Evolution. He reads everything out there about his passion - reptiles.

 

You may want to find some college texts for Zoology courses.....maybe at a used bookstore. My ds read the Abeka Biology book over the summer just for "fun".:001_huh: When he takes Biology next year we'll use Apologia.

 

The DK and Usborne Animal Encyclopedias are chock full of info and fun pictures.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

For well-written, accessible books on natural history, try:

Gerald Durrell (start with My Family & Other Animals)

Berndt Heinrich

Stephen Jay Gould

Konrad Lorenz

Sy Montgomery

Sue Hubbell

 

All the Attenborough books and documentaries

 

The Zoology Coloring Book

 

If he has an interest in birds, I highly recommend the Manual of Ornithology; the illustrations are awesome.

 

I also recommend checking Amazon and other used bookstores for cheap copies of older editions of college zoology textbooks. Some of the text will be over his head, but he can learn a ton from the illustrations, plus it will give him an idea of what a college zoology course is all about. I've picked up several texts for just a few dollars each.

 

Jackie

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, he'll need a solid biology foundation eventually. . .

 

An anatomy course could be fun. Maybe a "comparative anatomy" course doing a series of dissections? And coloring books? Would he enjoy that? It could be very valuable.

 

Beyond basic biology & anatomy, he might enjoy an Ecology text, or Evolutionary Biology. Those were a couple of my favorite courses in undergrad. Evolutionary Bio texts often compare various animal forms in a 'functional morphology' context which is really interesting if you are interested in critters. . . Learning how various bones/features/functions in various animals evolved and how they compare to each other. . . This joint in the dog = this joint in the horse = this joint. . . It sounds weird, but it is incredibly fascinating. :)

 

Ecology is very interesting in that it largely focuses on relationships between organisms. . . mutualism, predation, etc, etc. It's all pretty intriguing, IMHO.

 

Unfortunately, the only texts (on that kind of stuff) that I have are mid/upper level (300-400) college texts & grad school stuff, but I could dig them up & give you titles if you want to search up recent editions (these would be circa 1990). But, if you can find an appropriate level course that is on those topics, they might be more interesting than a typical survey biology book.

 

No offense intended. . . but, FWIW, unless you are a devout creationist, I'd run far away from an Apologia Zoology text! I shiver to imagine what non-standard 'science' would be in there in place of the scientifically-accepted evolutionary explanations of the vast majority of ecological and zoological concepts.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My ds has mentioned several times that he is interested in a career in zoology. I don't really know what courses or books that might help him build on that interest.

 

He doesn't like the biology aspect, but rather is interested in habitat and behaviorism. We own the Apologia Zoology set and he's read them several times. He really needs something a bit more advanced.

 

I'm thinking maybe some biologies of scientists/naturalists, a course that would guide him through general zoology or specific animals, maybe a book on zoology careers...may I please have some other ideas or recommendations? Would prefer secular, but don't really mind too much Christian content.

 

Thanks :)

 

Also look into ECOLOGY instead of zoology. As others have mentioned, zoology is part of biology. Ecology will get you more into habitat. Animal behaviorism could come from several different fields, depending on the angle.

 

I really liked this book by Mark Bekoff. The reading level is not very high.

The Emotional Lives of Animals

Check out something by Jane Goodall too from the library.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm sorry - I should have noted your son's age from your signature. The Usborne book I mentioned is definitely too young for him. At his age he could be reading E.O. Wilson, Stephen Jay Gould, Darwin, etc.

 

Also, sorry for my confusion regarding your use of the word behaviorism. I took a class in animal behavior and it was one of my favorite courses from all four years of college. Fascinating stuff! But zoologists, at least in my experience, do speak of simply "behavior" and behaviorism is a term that psychologists use. So I just wanted to make sure I knew what you were taking about, but I think I just allowed myself to get confused about a trivial thing that wasn't worth being confused about. Happens to me a lot. :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks Jackie for the recommendations. He's read some of those authors, but I hadn't heard of a few of the others.

 

Anyway, in a nutshell...the biological sciences are VERY geared towards medical applications, microbiology, biochemistry and there's been a huge burst in genetics.

 

Thanks so much. It seems that zoology isn't the name of the field he's interested in.

 

Also look into ECOLOGY instead of zoology. As others have mentioned, zoology is part of biology. Ecology will get you more into habitat. Animal behaviorism could come from several different fields, depending on the angle.

 

Thanks! I didn't realize that zoology was specifically a biology science. We used the term "Zoologist" because it seemed appropriately derived from the books that had originally sparked his interests. It seems that he'd probably prefer the correct definitions of Ecologist or Naturalist.

Edited by jadedone80
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...