Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences

What will I gain from my subject?

As a first step you should look at the programme specification for your subject which will provide insights into the skills and competences developed through your degree programme.  Employers welcome the skills-set developed by science-based courses.  These include subjects like animal science, biology, equine, genetics and zoology among others.  These are usually broken down into technical skills and soft skills.  With the former this includes analytical thinking, data analysis, numerical skills,

measurement and instrumentation abilities.  The latter could include communication – both oral and written, team working, meeting deadlines and interpersonal ability.  If you are searching for a role related to your discipline you will need laboratory and technical skills. 

What can I do with my subject?

IBERS students enter a hugely varied range of careers.  For some, they enter directly into employment related to their degree, while others progress into work which utilises the skills they have developed.  It is important to remember that there is no single path or one-size fits all career.  For microbiology, for example, graduates can enter biomedical science, clinical research and pharmacology plus many more.  For zoology careers in ecology, marine science and nature conservation are some of the options.  About a third of IBERS graduates will focus on postgraduate study.  Careers related to the environment, for example, have become increasingly popular so much so that a masters’ qualification is essential.  

Useful links:

  • The Prospects website has links on career options with different degrees which is worth exploring.

Where do I start looking for work experience and graduate jobs?

Let’s be honest! Competition for graduate jobs is intense and this applies as much to the biological, environmental and rural sciences as any other disciplines.  The same rules apply: plan your job search early; target specific companies/organisations that interest you; and apply with the same rigor as you would an important assignment.  In short, quality counts over quantity. Remember over 60% of science-related jobs are never advertised – one reason why employers recruit via short/long internships is to lower the cost and risk of appointing the wrong candidate.  In a recent report published by Highfliers in 2016 nearly 32% of vacancies were filled by candidates who had undertaken a work placement/internship with that company.  Candidates with little or no relevant work experience were ‘unlikely to be successful.’ 

By taking a proactive step toward securing work experience you will significantly improve your chances of gaining that all-important graduate job.

The links below will be useful to you when looking for work experience and graduate jobs.

UK

Overseas

Professional bodies and associations

These organisations promote the interests of people working in particular professions. Some have listings of employers who are members of the association and may advertise jobs while others may be a useful source of information when researching employers for applications or considering a speculative application.

Please note this is not a definitive list of resources; if you find something that you think might interest others, we would like to hear from you. Please e-mail careers@aber.ac.uk.

What do Aber graduates do?

Each year Aberystwyth University conducts a survey required by the UK government of graduate destinations in order to find out what they are doing.  Below are examples of roles our IBERS graduates have moved into:

  • Countryside Ranger
  • Ecologist and GIS Analyst
  • Farm Manager
  • Graduate Research Assistant in Molecular Parasitology
  • Lab Analyst
  • Research Technician

What help is available?

The Careers Service is here to help you.  IBERS has a dedicated, professional Careers Consultant to promote employability.  Their role is to offer impartial advice and guidance on the transition to graduate employment, or postgraduate study.  James Cuffe is the Careers Consultant for IBERS.  Students can access help by telephoning 01970 622378, emailing careers@aber.ac.uk , or visiting us in the Students Union. The service is available before and after graduation - it is FREE.  Students who are unsure of their next step, or those with a clear direction of a career are welcome to use the service.  It has a wealth of information to aid you in your career development.