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Do I need to go to med school if I wanna become a research immunobiologist?

I’m just a bit confused heh
Original post by prankcake
I’m just a bit confused heh

I think that there are lots of different people involved in research in immunobiology. You will have some pure scientists, who studied biology (potentially biochemistry) and then specialised with masters & PHDs, but also some medics who have gone into research. If you want to be a researcher, I think it's easier to go down a pure science route, especially if you know you don't want to be with patients in a hospital.
(edited 2 years ago)
No, is the short answer. As above you can do a bioscience degree which is probably the more relevant/direct route. There are various options in this regard depending on exactly what your interest is (e.g. microbiology, biochemistry, biomedical sciences, pharmacology, physiology, infection and immunity/immunology, etc, etc). As above a PhD would be essential and a masters may also be necessary (either an undergraduate integrated MSci or a BSc/BA + MSc or similar).

If you're specifically interested in immunology you may find various courses in infection and immunity or immunology (UCL has a course in infection and immunity, Bristol has courses in immunology which may be combined with e.g. virology, and Manchester has a course in virology) since it is so specifically relevant to your interests. However a degree in any bioscience subject broadly with a more specialised masters would be just as good too.

That said "immunologist" is a term for a medical doctor specialising in the immune system and related diseases, which may be the source of the confusion. They aren't research scientists (necessarily) but are clinicians in that area directly treating patients and arranging treatment plans etc. That would require a medical degree. Some immunologists may also go into immunology research though and get a PhD etc as above.
(edited 2 years ago)
Reply 3
Thanks all! I’m planning on taking biochemistry or something similar and I would like to get a PHD in something related to immunology. However, involving the research side rather than the clinical side, since I’m not too fond of the idea of working with patients! >: )
Original post by prankcake
Thanks all! I’m planning on taking biochemistry or something similar and I would like to get a PHD in something related to immunology. However, involving the research side rather than the clinical side, since I’m not too fond of the idea of working with patients! >: )

Please try to get as much experience as possible in a research lab whilst you're doing your undergrad degree before setting your heart on doing a PhD. The reality of academic research is quite different from what a lot of people think, and you might be much more happy working in a different science-related role that doesn't require a PhD.

Just some advice from a current PhD student :smile:

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