How to Become a Physiologist

Physiologists are professionals who have a vast knowledge of how living things work and the mechanics behind how the muscles and organs work together.

It is a specialization that focuses on how the body works beginning at the molecular level to understand how cells function.

The majority of Physiologists work in the healthcare industry with some individuals focusing their work in research and laboratory work.

Individuals who want to become a Physiologist will have a natural love of the sciences, biology and the how the human body works.

Individuals who want to enter this field are encouraged to focus their high school career in science and math to create a strong background in both of these areas.

Education Requirements to Become a Physiologist

A bachelor’s degree in physiology can lead to many specializations within this field.

Individuals who want to enter this field have the option to complete a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree or doctoral program depending on the type of career they want to get into.

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Individuals will need to seek a certification in order to become an Athletic Trainer or Exercise Physiologist.

Individuals who want to become a Physiologist and who acquire a bachelor’s degree in this field can seek a career as an Athletic Trainer or Exercise Physiologist.

Undergraduates studying physiology can expect to study in a classroom and clinical environment.

Typical courses for this degree may include health related classes and science classes such as biology, physiology, anatomy and nutrition.

Studying Physiology as an undergraduate can also prepare individuals to enter medical school to become a physician.

Individuals have the option to become certified as an Exercise Physiologist to show their qualifications and knowledge in this field.

Certification is optional and individuals can learn more information about the certification at ASEP.

Individuals can also visit ACSM to learn about a different certification program in sports medicine.

This organization also offers certification as Registered Clinical Exercise Physiologist (RCEP) for individuals who have a master’s degree.

Individuals also have the option to enroll in medical school in order to pursue a career as a physician.

An undergraduate degree in physiology can help individuals learn about various health topics, anatomy and health that can help prepare individuals for the rigorous academics involved in medical school.

After completing medical school, individuals will need to become licensed in order to practice medicine and complete a residency to gain the practical skills needed to treat patients.

Physiologist Job Description

Physiologists are individuals who have a strong background in how the body works and how many different parts of the body work together.

These professionals are responsible for meeting with their patients diagnose, treat and help with the prevention of bone and muscle illnesses or injuries.

These professionals will also create a treatment plan for their patients.

A treatment plan is geared to helping patients with their mobility, cardiovascular system and body composition.

Exercise programs will also be created for individuals that will help improve their overall level of health.

Physiologist Salary and Career Path

Exact wages for Physiologists will depend on the area of specialization and many other factors.

In 2012, the median annual wage for Exercise Physiologists was approximately $44,770 per year.

Other factors that affect an individual’s salary include years of experience and their level of education.

For example, individuals who use their physiology degree to become a sports medicine can expect to earn a median salary of approximately $220,942 per year.

The job outlook for individuals entering the healthcare field looks strong and is expected to grow at a rapid pace.

Job opportunities in the healthcare industry are expected to grow by 18 to 19 percent through the year 2022, a much faster rate when compared to other professions and industries.

Job growth is attributed to the increase in demand for preventative healthcare services and the recent changes in healthcare legislation that has provided more healthcare coverage to many more individuals.

Individuals who want to become a Physiologist and study this field as an undergraduate have plenty of opportunities because of the fast growth that is expected in the health and medical field.

Individuals can become Athletic Trainers or enter medical school to become a doctor; careers that are both expected to add job opportunities for jobseekers.

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