Botanists are the ones who study the science of plant life. It is a branch of biology that studies the structure, biochemical properties, growth, reproduction, and metabolism of the plant life. A botanist is responsible to study the relationship of the plant life with humans. It studies and develops methods of using the valuable properties of plants for the benefit of mankind in the form of food or medicines. If you wish to pursue a career as a botanist, it is advisable to complete your graduation in science and specialize in botany. Further, you can complete your Master's Degree or PhD to improve your job prospects.
Botanists find job opportunities in three sectors, namely teaching, researching, and writing. The work responsibilities differ with the work sector. Hence, we have highlighted the major botanist responsibilities while working for that particular sector.
- In Teaching - A botanist can take up teaching jobs at schools, colleges, or universities. Teachers spread their knowledge in botany to other students by explaining the various theories, terminologies, and processes in the science of botany. They teach the methods of identifying the nature of plants and classifying them. It is the teacher's responsibility to generate a genuine liking for the subject in the minds of the students. Teachers prepare learning materials, use the medium of audio-visual systems to teach, carry live specimens to classrooms, and conduct live tests and analysis to teach the students the practical applications of science of botany.
- In Research - Research is conducted on two levels: field study and laboratory testing. A botanist has an option of playing either roles. A botanist who goes on field study is responsible to gather samples of plants and bring them to the laboratory. They conduct preliminary research to finalize the type of species they wish to obtain and the place where it is easily available. Accordingly, they conduct field trips to visit places that are rich in biological diversity, under harsh climatic conditions, and to gather the requisite specimens. Once the samples are collected, they are sent across to laboratories for inspection. Scientists test the samples, identify the nature of the specie,analyze its genetic structure and biochemical properties, and classify it under a category. This research helps to study the biological balance in nature and use the valuable properties of the plant specie beneficially.
- In Writing and Presentation - A botanist can utilize his expertise for designing course materials, writing science journals, publishing articles in newspaper or science magazines, etc. It is vital to note down the research work. Writing research reports allows the researcher's knowledge to spread along to other learners and helps them in fulfilling their research work. A botanist may be called over to universities or conferences to conduct seminars and explain the advancements introduced in this science.
Types of Botanists - Responsibilities
The main responsibilities of a botanist are determined by his area of specialization. A botanist has the choice of specializing in a particular area of expertise within botany. Hence, although the botanists discharge the above mentioned responsibilities, there is a vast difference in the application of knowledge. We have included the names of different botanists and highlighted their main area of study.
- Agronomists: Experts who study the agriculture crops and grasses
- Marine Botanists: Experts who study the plant life under water
- Economist Botanists: Experts who research for plants that can be used as food, medicine, or raw material
- Plant Physiologists: Experts who study the life-cycle of plants and identify the diseases or maladaptive conditions in plants
- Mycologists: Experts who specialize in fungus, its genetics, and biochemical properties
- Bryologists: Experts who specialize in study of mosses and their genetic structure
- Phycologists: Experts who specialize in study of algae, its genetic structure, and relationship with the environment.
Botanist responsibilities are defined by the specialization area. Hence, take up the job field that interests you the most and start off your career in the science of botany.