Biologist vs. Physician.

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Biologist vs. Physician.

Post by tata888 » Mon Jun 21, 2010 3:00 am

Most of my friends are enrolling themself in biology courses to become either a physician or a pharmacist, only me want to become a biologist. So my question is: What distinguish a biologist from a physician except for the diploma. They seem to be studying the same thing and work about the same thing, so is there a difference anywhere in their methods or interests? Thanks.

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Post by canalon » Mon Jun 21, 2010 9:24 pm

Yes physician are generally poor scientists, are not real doctors (M.D. is not a doctorate from the original meaning of the term, unless they go for the Ph. D. too), are allowed to treat people (takes most of their time), and even some research and make a lot of money.
Biologist, usually become real doctors, do not make much money, are now used to portray the evil scientists in the modern movies, and are not allowed to treat people (probably a good thing), but are usually in research, where they usually do less bad than physicians.

But I find surprising that you need me to point out the difference between the 2 fields... Let me suggest the best: M.D. Ph.D double program are available. You can do research competently, teach in university AND make some money :)

PS: Guess what side of the divide I am ?

Science has proof without any certainty. Creationists have certainty without
any proof. (Ashley Montague)

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Post by Dibear » Tue Jun 22, 2010 3:40 am

Well, what "they" say is that the biologist is the poor doctor and the physician is the rich doctor. ;-)

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Post by mith » Tue Jun 29, 2010 7:27 pm

physicians are more like detectives in that they're getting a medical diagnosis out of various observations. Important traits are deductive abilities and good memory. You don't necessarily have to heal everyone to be a good doctor, if you can understand how to diagnose 95% of the patients, you're pretty good.

the biologist does something similar in finding out the mysteries of life but there's a lot more unknowns and creativity needed to explain and devise new experiments. Induction and deduction are important. You'll fail a lot and a lot of work maybe be performed just so you can find some minor aberration that has not been explained before.
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Post by terryandrews » Sun Sep 12, 2010 1:00 am

There are all sorts of biologists that deal with plants, marine biology, microbiology, fungi, protists, bacteria, etc, and physicians specialize with humans and other animals, but I don't think you're talking about vets. I suppose that most physicians have worse hours depending on whether they work for a clinic or a hospital, and they have to be able to deal with people a LOT more (crabby and sweet, but often crabby). Also, some physicians may have to work in the wee hours of the morning or be on call (if someone is having a baby, they're having a baby, they're not going to wait), while biologists have more normal schedules. In the end doesn't it depend on what your interests are? If you're fascinated by all forms of life and want to study different ecosystems and how animals interact, you become a biologist. If you want to help people who are suffering from illnesses or disabilities, be they pleasant, irritating, or just depressed, you become a physician. If you're a physician, I think that there's more stress and less family time, but that's just from what I know.
A scientist's job is to find answers without too many holes, or at least come up with interesting ideas with holes that no one will care about.

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