Re: RE: NANFA-L-- ichthyology degree

Subject: Re: RE: NANFA-L-- ichthyology degree
Date: Tue Dec 07 2004 - 08:00:32 CST


I know of no undergraduate degree in ichthyology. However, many institutions offer undergrad degrees in related fields, such as zoology, fisheries management, natural resource management, biology, integrative biology, marine science, and so on. Actually, the list of fields where one may get fundamental training and education appropriate for future work with fishes is very large.

Depending on the direction of your interests (managing fish populations, conservation, basic research in fish evolution ...... , again the list is endless), you might prefer to study in a fish and wildlife or similar program, or you might want to study in a basic program like zoology, or biology. Large schools offering any of these programs should have undergraduate courses in vertebrate zoology, ichthyology, fisheries biology, and other related courses. Small schools may not offer these courses, but may still be a good place to study.

Such a program can be completed in four or five years of full-time study, starting with only a high school graduation. Specializing in ichthyology is done in graduate school (masters or Ph.D.), and requires from 2 to 6 additional years. There are ichthyologists by a number of specialty names-in-many institutions.

I recommend that you take a look-in-the web site for the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists, and that of the American Fisheries Society. Also, take a look-in-the primary journals that publish ichthyological work, such as Copeia, Transactions of the American Fisheries Society, Conservation Biology. Pick some fishes that are of interest to you, and search for work that is on the web. You will find the names of scientists who study those fishes, and information about their research programs.

You may wish to study where some of those folks are located, and you may wish to contact some of them prior to applying there. They may be able to tell you more about what you will find in the way of opportunity to work with fishes as an undergraduate.

Finally, I recommend that you pick a place to study that will be comfortable for you in a wide range of aspects, not just academic. Most people who fail to complete their studies leave school for non-academic reasons.

You will notice from my signature that I am a professor. Langston University is a small, historically black, public, undergraduate institution. We offer a general undergrad program in biology. Most of our students are preparing for medical or medically related careers. We also offer a degree in natural resource management, which includes a course in fisheries biology and one in limnology (freshwater science). Most students in that program are preparing for graduate study in natural resource management, conservation, or for government positions.


David L. McNeely, Ph.D., Professor of Biology
Langston University; P.O. Box 1500
Langston, OK 73050; email:
telephone: (405) 466-6025; fax: 405) 466-3307
home page

"Where are we going?" "I don't know, are we there yet?"

----- Original Message -----
From: "Rose, Patrick PO" <>
I want to go for ichthyology,
> depending on how
> long it will take to get a degree in it.

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: Sat Jan 01 2005 - 12:41:49 CST