Careers Service

Using your science outside the lab

Alternative careers in science

Working in scientific research is a popular option for science graduates, but it’s not what everyone wants. If you’re keen to use the knowledge you’ve gained during your degree but would prefer not to be doing research in a laboratory there are plenty of possibilities.

It can be helpful to think about the different scientific roles as falling into these ten categories, as outlined by The Science Council:

Ten types of scientist (Science Council)

Some of the careers where a science degree will be useful

The level of subject knowledge and technical skills required will vary between jobs, but a familiarity with scientific terms and concepts is either required or will work to your advantage in all of the following roles.

Science communication

Find out more about working in science communication

Science publishing

Find out more about working in science publishing

Science policy

Find out more about working in science policy

Data science

Find out more about working in data science

Intellectual property and patents

Find out more about working in intellectual property and patents

Production management

Find out more about working in production management

Quality assurance 

Find out more about working in quality assurance 

Technical sales and marketing

Find out more about working in sales and marketing (including pharmaceutical sales)

Scientific recruitment consultancy

Find out more about working in recruitment

Teaching

Find out more about working in teaching

Beyond the lab - alternative careers for science graduates

Hear from graduates working in  science writing, science communication, ecology, recruitment, pharmaceuticals, meteorology and teaching in these short videos produced by the Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services (AGCAS).

Beyond the lab - YouTube playlist