How to Be Successful in Microbiology? – The study of microorganisms like bacteria, protozoa, fungi, and viruses is related to microbiology. These microscopic living organisms influence life on this planet abundantly both positively and adversely.
Studying microbiology and understanding the physiological activities of microorganisms is crucial to practically every ecological process on our planet. Microbial matter exists everywhere; it can be found in and around us. Online Microbiology Course will help students who are taking up multidisciplinary programs.
Impact of applied microbiology
Microbiologists observe microbes that cannot be seen by the naked eye with the help of a microscope. These small living organisms have either single or multiple cells and very basic structures in comparison to other living beings.
It is essential to study their metabolic cycle and other physiological activities to understand the role they play that can be pro or anti-other living beings. For instance, microbes are essential in the nutrient cycle of an ecosystem where dead and dried matter is broken down during the process of decomposition.
In this process, inorganic compounds are released back into the atmosphere, and organic nutrients like nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus that are critical for plant growth are enriched in the soil medium. Microbes are critical in bio plants, climate change, food processing, drug development, and cleaning pollution.
Benefits of applied microbiology in history
Without the help of scientists who researched microbes, some of the life-saving discoveries of modern medical history wouldn’t be achieved. Some of the famous microbiology research that helped mankind are:
- Smallpox vaccine by Jenner
- Discovery of penicillin by Fleming
- Heliobacter pylori infection and stomach ulcer link identified by Marshall
- The link between human papillomavirus and cervical cancer was discovered by Dr. Zur Hausen
Challenges that microbiologists help in combating
Current challenges that surround the environment are
- Antimicrobial resistance or AMR
- Climate change
The role of microbiology in comprehending the activities of microbes and devising strategies to combat the diseases spread by them is possible only because of microbiology. Environmental and climate change policymaking can be sustainable only with the aid of competent microbiologists along with other scientists.
Steps to face challenges in learning microbiology
Microbiologists will always be in demand in research and industry-related R&D labs. However, to be a successful microbiologist one needs to be consistent in their studies, be aware of changes in the research area that impacts their field of expertise, have professional affiliations, maintain continuing education points and be an advocate for the code of ethics that govern the profession.
Preparing to be a microbiologist should be an act of interest and passion as the work may seem very slow and uninteresting to many in the beginning. Nevertheless, it is a field that can mesmerize anyone who has a passion for life sciences.
A common man understands microbes as germs that impact life by influencing the physiological conditions of the host’s living body. However, microbiology’s scope and prevalence in human life are much more than just superficial germs that cause colds or fevers. Hence it is important to work towards delivering results that ultimately impact human life and elevate the role of a microbiologist so that others can take up this course at the professional level.
To graduate to the stage where a person is recognized for their contribution, a microbiologist needs to follow a few principles for career progress. Some of these principles are discussed here:
1. Clear basics
The basics of the subject will be the foundation for a successful microbiologist. Taking notes and reading the subject material is as important as attending classes and lab work. Understand the diagram and jot notes that can be used as reference checkers.
Preparing flashcards will help you both memorize and revise at the same time. You can write important terms on a card and write the corresponding definition on the back of the card. Using these flashcards to quiz one another in a study group will increase the chances of longer retention of the microbiology terms.
2. Select a suitable program
Microbiologists can choose a program that suits their interests, depending on whether they want to get into pure microbiology or applied life sciences. However, admissions for universities with good programs close faster as they are always in demand. If you are not an early bird, your chances of making it into a good university or college are dim. Plan and get your eligibility requirements in line, so that you will be able to experience quality education provided in good college programs. Choose a program with a good lab as microbiology is more about lab work and less about other features.
3. Internships and work-experience
Any professional commitment parallel to your studies will broaden your ability to comprehend practical scenarios that can impact the work-life of a microbiologist. Before finishing the college program one can take summer internships or assist the professors to gain practical experience.
Any lab experience will be valuable when applying for vacancies in the real world. Internships will also give credits that are useful in the overall score when graduating from the program. The professional experience involves basic but necessary work like recording, journaling, and making important logs for the work carried out daily. As a lab assistant or intern, these skills are acquired and help in career prospects.
4. Think outside lab
Microbiologist positions start in a lab but need not remain in one. There are varied positions where the opinion of microbiologists matters. These positions are both in industry and policy-making jobs. Instead of taking up easy courses, if a student challenges himself and learns as many related courses as possible in applied microbiology, then there is no dearth of opportunities for microbiology students.
In any profession leaving school and joining the mainstream profession can be intimidating. Nonetheless, in the age of information, a student can learn many online courses that are self-paced and oriented around applied microbiology. These courses are both free and paid and some of them are offered by ivy league universities. It is a good idea to explore them to ace your career.
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