Entomology is the study of how insects relate to their environment and to man.
As an entomologist, you may choose to concentrate on the bad bugs: those that destroy food, housing, plants and clothing, and cause discomfort and diseases in humans, livestock and pets. Or you may choose to focus on the good bugs: those that provide food, pollinate crops, destroy harmful insects or are food for birds and fish.
Representative Job Titles and Area of Specialization
- Area Farm Advisor
- Agricultural Entomology
- Biological Control Consultant
- Economic Entomologist *
- Expeditions (Overseas Searches)
- Extension Entomologist
- Food-Plant Sanitation *
- Forest Entomologist
- Genetic Entomologist
- Grain And Commodity Inspector *
- Host Plant Resistance
- Insect Biosystematist
- Insect Ecology
- Insect Pathologist
- Insect Physiologist
- Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
- IPM Field Scout *
- Laboratory Assistant *
- Laboratory Technician *
- Medical Entomologist
- Mosquito Abatement Program *
- Museum Curator
- Pest Control Advisor
- Pest Control Technician *
- Pest Management Specialist *
- Pesticide Development And Analysis
- Pesticide Use Specialist
- Population Biology
- Quarantine Inspector *
- Registration Specialist (Agricultural Chemicals)*
- Research Assistant/Technician *
- Staff Research Associate *
- Stored Products Entomologist *
- Survey Entomologist (Identification And Research)
- Technical Marketing Representative *
- Technical Writer/Editor *
- Urban/Industrial Entomologist
- Vector Control Specialist *
- Veterinary Entomologist
* See Training section
Nature of the Work
Entomologists, who work in applied research, concentrate on solving specific problems such as developing insect-resistant plants to eliminate the need for harmful pesticides.
Those who work in inspection and control investigate damage by insects to a variety of products. They may develop or suggest accepted methods to control or eliminate the insects.
Entomologists in an academic setting are responsible for teaching, research and some administrative duties.
Places of Employment
- Colleges, universities
- U.S. Dept. of Agriculture
- Agricultural Research Service
- U.S. Forest Service
- State departments of agriculture
- Armed forces
- Consulting firms
- Agricultural chemicals industry
- Mosquito control agencies
- Pest control companies
- Conservation agencies
- Corporations involved in food, fiber and forest products
- Cooperative Extension
- State and federal plant quarantine agencies
- Local, state & federal departments of public health
- Independent laboratories
Check out the jobs with asterisks. They may be obtained with a bachelor's degree depending on the type of coursework you completed and experience you gained as an undergrad.
A master's degree is considered the minimum qualification for professional entomologists. If you want to teach and conduct research at a university, you would need a Ph.D.
For further information and/or career counseling contact the UCR Career Center, (951) 827-3631.
The following documents may provide further ideas for exploration.