Alternative titles for this job include

Geneticists study how genes work in humans, animals, plants and microbes, and how they are passed on.

Average salary (a year)

£35,000 Starter


£58,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

38 to 40 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Geneticist

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course


You'll need a life science degree or a postgraduate master's qualification in genetics, or a related subject which covers genetics.

Degrees and postgraduate courses include:

  • genetics
  • biology
  • biochemistry
  • molecular biology
  • life sciences
  • biological science

Employers may expect you to have, or be working towards, a PhD.

Integrated master's qualifications such as MBiolSci, MBiol or MSci can be studied at university. These courses combine independent research and can lead directly on to study for a PhD.

It's useful to gain experience of laboratory and research techniques during your degree through internships or year placements.

If you want to work in the NHS you can apply to the Scientist Training Programme (STP) after your degree where you can specialise in genomics work.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English, maths and science
  • 3 A levels, or equivalent, including at least 1 science
  • a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study

More Information

More Information

Professional and industry bodies

You could join The Genetics Society to get access to professional development opportunities.

Further information

You can find out more about careers in genetics from:

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • knowledge of biology
  • science skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • analytical thinking skills
  • maths knowledge
  • persistence and determination
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages confidently

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

As a geneticist, you may:

  • prepare and analyse samples of genetic tissue in a lab
  • record and interpret the results of experiments and tests
  • develop computer models of genes based on data and statistics
  • study genetic changes and defects and how these affect growth and development
  • report and publish findings in scientific papers
  • plan lectures and teach students

Working environment

You could work at a university, in a laboratory or at a research facility.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience you could become a clinical science laboratory supervisor or clinical study manager.

You might also use your skills in genetics to move into:

  • bioinformatics
  • agricultural science
  • forensic science
  • genetic counselling
  • university lecturing
  • medical ethics

Current opportunities

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Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a Geneticist right now.

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Courses In England

Applied Science

  • Start date: 03 September 2024
  • Location: Leeds

Science (Biological Science) — Access to HE

  • Start date: 30 September 2024
  • Location: LIVERPOOL

Jobs In the United Kingdom

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