Plant Pathologist

Plant pathologists specialize in the study of the nature, cause, and control of the diseases of plants. Plant pathologists are employed by colleges and universities, agricultural businesses, research organizations, government agencies, private enterprises, and as self–employed practitioners. They teach and conduct research; provide advice on the diagnosis and control of plant diseases; manage greenhouses, parks, golf courses, and farms; and serve as sales representatives and administrators.

A career as a plant pathologist typically begins with a Bachelor's degree in one of the chemical, biological, or physical sciences. Coursework or a major in plant pathology will result in greater employment opportunities. High school preparation should include four years of science and math. Preparation for most professional positions will include specialized graduate work leading to a master of science and/or doctor of philosophy degrees (Ph.D.). Graduate plant pathology specialities include virology, bacteriology, mycology, molecular plant pathology, epidemiology, biological control, and diagnosis. Individuals interested in a career in plant pathology should contact the plant pathology department at a university.

SEE ALSO Botanist ; Microbiologist ; Plant Pathogens and Pests

John R. Steele


Dr. Nelson's Page. University of Arizona–Department of Plant Pathology. <>

Plant Pathology/Disease Online. The American Phytopathological Society (APSnet). <> .

Plant Pathology Specialities. University of Florida. <> .

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