|MadSci Network: General Biology|
I've looked at several Applied Biology departments and websites and there doesn't seem to be a really good definition. My sense of it is that applied biology is really the study and development of tools and methods specific to biological research needs. For example, one site I found listed the following applied biology specialties: bioregulatory affairs/science management, biomedical applications and biotechnology/biocomputing. As you can see, these topics don't really have to do with hands on research. Rather, the field of applied biology seems to focus on the support of biologcial research and perhaps consulting. The course lists for this major all show a certain 'jack of all trades' mentality. I think if you were to major in Applied Biology, you would have to know a little about all the various biological fields plus a concentration in something like computers, law or writing. For example, you might end up working with a research professional that found some interesting phenomena but didn't know how to apply it to practical use or maybe you would consult non-scienctist policy makers on new techonology so they could make informed legislation. The possibilities are really endless. That's my best take on it. I hope it helps.
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