Microbiologists
SOC: 19-1022.00

Description:

Investigate the growth, structure, development, and other characteristics of microscopic organisms, such as bacteria, algae, or fungi. Includes medical microbiologists who study the relationship between organisms and disease or the effects of antibiotics on microorganisms.


National Salary Information:

Hourly Statistics:

Annual Statistics:

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 wage data.


Employment Projections:

Employment (2014):
22,400 employed

Projected (2024):
23,200 employed

Projected growth (2014-2024)


Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 2014-2024 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2014-2024). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.


Alternate Titles:

  • Bacteriologist
  • Chemist
  • Clinical Laboratory Scientist
  • Clinical Microbiologist
  • Cytologist
  • Electron Microscopist
  • Medical Laboratory Technician
  • Medical Microbiologist
  • Medical Technologist
  • Microbiological Analyst
  • Microbiological Laboratory Technician
  • Microbiologist
  • Microbiology Analyst
  • Microbiology Laboratory Director
  • Microbiology Laboratory Manager
  • Microbiology Supervisor
  • Microscopist
  • Mycobacteria and Brucella Laboratory Head
  • Physical Scientist
  • Professor of Microbiology
  • Public Health Microbiologist
  • Public Health Microbiology Laboratory Director
  • Quality Control Microbiologist (QC Microbiologist)
  • Research Microbiologist
  • Study Director
  • Virologist
  • Virology Director


  • Job Zone Five: Extensive Preparation Needed

    Experience:

    Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience are needed for these occupations. Many require more than five years of experience. For example, surgeons must complete four years of college and an additional five to seven years of specialized medical training to be able to do their job.

    Education:

    Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).

    Job Training:

    Employees may need some on-the-job training, but most of these occupations assume that the person will already have the required skills, knowledge, work-related experience, and/or training.


    Required Skills:

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Critical Thinking
  • Active Learning
  • Learning Strategies
  • Monitoring
  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Coordination
  • Persuasion
  • Negotiation
  • Instructing
  • Service Orientation
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Operations Analysis
  • Technology Design
  • Equipment Selection
  • Programming
  • Operation Monitoring
  • Operation and Control
  • Troubleshooting
  • Quality Control Analysis
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Systems Analysis
  • Systems Evaluation
  • Time Management
  • Management of Financial Resources
  • Management of Material Resources
  • Management of Personnel Resources

  • Knowledge Used:

  • Administration and Management
  • Clerical
  • Economics and Accounting
  • Sales and Marketing
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Personnel and Human Resources
  • Production and Processing
  • Food Production
  • Computers and Electronics
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Design
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Psychology
  • Sociology and Anthropology
  • Geography
  • Medicine and Dentistry
  • Therapy and Counseling
  • Education and Training
  • English Language
  • Foreign Language
  • History and Archeology
  • Philosophy and Theology
  • Public Safety and Security
  • Law and Government
  • Telecommunications
  • Communications and Media
  • Transportation


  • Tasks:

  • Examine physiological, morphological, and cultural characteristics, using microscope, to identify and classify microorganisms in human, water, and food specimens.
  • Provide laboratory services for health departments, for community environmental health programs and for physicians needing information for diagnosis and treatment.
  • Observe action of microorganisms upon living tissues of plants, higher animals, and other microorganisms, and on dead organic matter.
  • Investigate the relationship between organisms and disease including the control of epidemics and the effects of antibiotics on microorganisms.
  • Supervise biological technologists and technicians and other scientists.
  • Study growth, structure, development, and general characteristics of bacteria and other microorganisms to understand their relationship to human, plant, and animal health.
  • Prepare technical reports and recommendations based upon research outcomes.
  • Study the structure and function of human, animal and plant tissues, cells, pathogens and toxins.
  • Use a variety of specialized equipment such as electron microscopes, gas chromatographs and high pressure liquid chromatographs, electrophoresis units, thermocyclers, fluorescence activated cell sorters and phosphoimagers.
  • Conduct chemical analyses of substances such as acids, alcohols, and enzymes.
  • Research use of bacteria and microorganisms to develop vitamins, antibiotics, amino acids, grain alcohol, sugars, and polymers.
  • Isolate and maintain cultures of bacteria or other microorganisms in prescribed or developed media, controlling moisture, aeration, temperature, and nutrition.
  • Monitor and perform tests on water, food, and the environment to detect harmful microorganisms or to obtain information about sources of pollution, contamination, or infection.
  • Develop new products and procedures for sterilization, food and pharmaceutical supply preservation, or microbial contamination detection.

  • Tools & Technology:

  • 8-channel electronic pipettes
  • Alcohol lamps
  • Anaerobic growth chambers
  • Analytical balances
  • Argon lasers
  • Autoclaves
  • Automated gram stainers
  • Automated microbial identification systems
  • Automatic cell sorters
  • Automatic coverslipper
  • Automatic pipetters
  • Bacteriological incubators
  • Bacticinerators
  • Bioaerosol impactors
  • Biological safety hoods
  • Bioreactors
  • Bright field light microscopes
  • Bubble counters
  • Charge coupled device CCD color digital cameras
  • Chemical safety showers
  • Colony counters
  • Compound binocular light microscopes
  • Conductivity meters
  • Coplin jars
  • Culture bottles
  • Culture tubes
  • Darkroom developing tanks
  • Deionized DI water systems
  • Deoxyribonucleic acid DNA sequencers
  • Desktop centrifuges
  • Desktop computers
  • Dichotomous particulate matter samplers
  • Direct heat dry wall carbon dioxide CO2 incubators
  • Dissecting microscopes
  • Dissolved oxygen meters
  • Dropping pipettes
  • Dry bath incubators
  • Drying ovens
  • Electronic sterilizers
  • Electronic toploading balances
  • Electroporators
  • Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay ELISA plate readers
  • Erlenmeyer flask clamps
  • Erlenmeyer flasks
  • Eyewash fountains
  • Fecal coliform water baths
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Floor shakers
  • Flow cytometers
  • Fluorescence activated cell sorters
  • Fluorescent microscopes
  • Fourier transform infrared FTIR spectrometers
  • Freeze dryers
  • French presses
  • Gas chromatographs GC
  • Gas-powered generators
  • Gel documentation systems
  • Gel electrophoresis boxes
  • Gel support frames
  • Gel transfer apparatus
  • Graduated glass laboratory cylinders
  • Hardy Diagnostics HUGO
  • Heat blocks
  • Heating stirplates
  • Helium-neon lasers
  • HEPA filtered biosafety cabinets
  • High pressure liquid chromatographs HPLC
  • High-speed centrifuges
  • Hybridization ovens
  • Impedance meters
  • Infrared gas analyzers
  • Infrared IR spectrometers
  • Inoculating loops
  • Inverted microscopes
  • Laboratory beakers
  • Laboratory funnels
  • Laboratory gas burners
  • Laboratory glassware washers
  • Laboratory heat exchange condensing devices
  • Laboratory membrane filtering devices
  • Laboratory refrigerators
  • Laboratory test tubes
  • Laboratory vacuum pumps
  • Laminar flow cabinets
  • Laser printers
  • Liquid chromatograph devices
  • Liquid impingers
  • Liquid nitrogen storage equipment
  • Magnetic laboratory stirrers
  • Mass spectrometers
  • Membrane filtration systems
  • Micro balances
  • Microcalorimeters
  • Microcentrifuges
  • Micromanipulators
  • Micropipettes
  • Microscope slides
  • Mid-infrared spectrometers
  • Multiplate readers
  • Multistage agar impactors
  • Multiwell trays
  • Notebook computers
  • Oil-immersion microscope lenses
  • Orbital shaking incubators
  • Orbital shaking water baths
  • Osmometers
  • Peristaltic pumps
  • Personal computers
  • Petri dishes
  • pH meters
  • Phase contrast microscopes
  • Photomicroscopes
  • Pipette pumps
  • Precision pan balances
  • Prepared agar plates
  • Protective gloves
  • Protective laboratory coats
  • Raman spectrometers
  • Rechargeable electronic pipette fillers
  • Recording thermometers
  • Refrigerated benchtop centrifuges
  • Refrigerated recirculating water baths
  • Respirators
  • Rotator mixers
  • Safety glasses
  • Safety shoes
  • Scanning electron microscopes SEM
  • Sectioned petri plates
  • Semidry blotting apparatus
  • Serology rotators
  • Shaking incubators
  • Sonicators
  • Staining dishes
  • Steroclaves
  • Test tube racks
  • Thermocyclers
  • Tissue homogenizers
  • Transilluminators
  • Transmission electron microscopes TEM
  • Ultra cold biological freezers
  • Ultracentrifuges
  • Ultraviolet UV lamps
  • Visible spectrometers
  • Visible/UV light scanning spectrophotometers
  • Vortex mixers
  • Water purification systems
  • Water sample collection containers
  • X ray diffractometers
  • Assistant Software for Antimicrobial Susceptibility Interpretation ASASI
  • Basic Local Alignment Search Tool BLAST
  • BD Biosciences CellQuest
  • BD Biosciences CloneCyt
  • Bruker Optics OPUS
  • BtB Software Mycobacteriology Lab
  • Codon Usage Database
  • ComBase
  • Computer Service & Support CLS-2000 Laboratory System
  • Computing Solutions LabSoft LIMS Micro
  • Database management software
  • DNA sequence analysis software
  • Email software
  • FindTarget
  • FramePlot
  • Gene Finder
  • Gene recognition software
  • Genie Interactive
  • Image capture and analysis software
  • Laboratory information management system LIMS software
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Word
  • NetLims AutoLims
  • Orchard Software Orchard Harvest LIS
  • Pathogen Modeling Program PMP
  • PHYLIP
  • PIBWin
  • PredictProtein
  • Proscan
  • Protein databases
  • Protein Explorer
  • ProtScale
  • SAP software
  • STARLIMS
  • Statistical software
  • TreeView
  • Verity Software House ModFit LT
  • Web browser software
  • WHONET
  • Word processing software


  • life physical and social science


    industry stats

    SOC: 19-0000

    Total Employed: 1,146,110

    Average Annual Salary: $71,220