Study Science Abroad

Study Science Abroad

According to which laws does life on our earth function? Are there living beings in the vastness of the universe that can be compared to us? How can we generate renewable energies in the future? Scientists are looking for answers to the existential questions in life.

The natural sciences: an overview

Scientists try, with the help of experiments and observations, to determine the principles by which the nature that surrounds us functions . A distinction is made between:

  • the inanimate nature and
  • the living nature

Inanimate nature includes, for example, metals, gases, stones, but also other planets. People, animals and plants come together under the term “living nature”.

The exact sciences

The so-called “exact natural sciences” that deal with inanimate nature include:

  • astronomy
  • physics
  • chemistry
  • geology

According to, the exact natural sciences are characterized by the fact that scientists try to express natural phenomena in calculable mathematical and physical formulas .

Interface subjects: life sciences and geography

Biologists are also looking for generally applicable laws. The subject of their investigation, however, is living nature . Therefore, they must also include the relationships between individual systems and organisms and factors such as time or chance in their investigations.

In order to be able to grasp life in its complexity, numerous other subjects from biology have developed over the last few decades , which link the subject with other areas of science . The so-called biosciences include:

  • Biochemistry
  • Biotechnology
  • Bioinformatics
  • Biomedicine
  • Neuroscience

These courses are often more practice-oriented than the classic natural science courses. They try to find solutions to current medical or environmental issues.

The geography can be used as interface specialist called because it treats besides science and humanities and social sciences content.

Special cases: mathematics and computer science

The math is not strictly a science, but a so-called structural science . In its pure form, it is less concerned with inanimate or animate nature than with abstract forms and structures. But since it forms the basis of almost all natural science courses , the subject of mathematics is assigned to the natural science faculty at many universities.

The same applies to the subject of computer science , which in turn is often divided into further sub- subjects such as applied computer science , technical computer science or media informatics .

Study opportunities

Almost all universities in Germany offer mathematics, computer science, physics, chemistry and biology. The range of younger courses such as biochemistry or neuroscience differs from university to university. In particular, the practice-related courses in the field of computer science or biology are also offered at universities of applied sciences, which are often characterized by a particularly practice-related course.

A special case is the subject of astronomy , which is dedicated to the study of planets, stars and black holes. This is currently not offered as an independent bachelor’s degree in Germany . You can only specialize in astrophysics at some universities as part of a physics degree. However, students can then follow this up with a master’s degree in astronomy / astrophysics .

Requirements to study natural sciences

No matter which science you choose: No student will be able to avoid mathematics. So being happy with numbers and formulas is a good prerequisite for studying natural sciences. Anyone who also had good grades in mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology and computer science in school generally has good cards.

Advantages of studying science abroad

It is advisable to take one or two semesters abroad during your studies, because:

  • Students can train their foreign language skills and learn to work in international teams .
  • Other research focuses at the foreign universities offer students the opportunity to sharpen their academic profile .
  • A semester abroad is a unique opportunity to get to know another country and culture and to make friends with fellow students from all over the world.

Professions for natural scientists

As different as the courses in the natural sciences are, so are the professional opportunities.

Working in research

Those who have decided on a “classical natural science” often remain loyal to research even after their studies . They find jobs at university, state and private research institutes, but also in research departments in commercial enterprises.

Graduates of more recent courses such as biochemistry or biomedicine mostly work in application-oriented research after their studies . For example, you are employed in research laboratories in the pharmaceutical, optical or biotechnological industries.

Many research teams are international. The big companies also operate worldwide. If you want to work in research later, you should not only have specialist knowledge, but also knowledge of one or more foreign languages ​​and intercultural skills .

Working in other areas

Aside from research, graduates work in the areas of quality management, monitoring or management consulting, among other things . Computer scientists, but also mathematicians, can often be found in the IT industry . Depending on the focus of their course, they develop new hardware or software or install and maintain IT systems. Another typical area of ​​work for mathematicians is insurance and banking . Graduates, for example, develop new products or work in the area of ​​risk management.

In addition, it is of course also possible to study mathematics, biology, chemistry or physics to become a teacher. Those who have studied to become teachers usually pass on their knowledge to pupils at elementary, secondary, secondary and comprehensive schools as well as high schools.

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