A branch of medicine, dermatology is the examination, diagnosis, and treatment of the disorders and diseases that affect the skin. In addition to helping skin problems, dermatologists diagnose and treat problems that affect patients’ hair and nails. Potential dermatology majors should be detail-oriented, careful individuals, as it is common for these problems to require minor surgery, therapy, and medication, all of require skillful management. Dermatologists also interact with patients on a daily basis, and therefore must have strong interpersonal skills. They should be able to use their bedside manner to keep patients at ease during the treatment process. Finally, potential dermatologists should expect to complete medical school, which is a long and often expensive venture, as dermatologists must be licensed doctors prior to practicing.
Classes and Assignments of a Dermatology Major
Before enrolling in online masters dermatology programs, students must complete pre-med classes at the bachelor’s degree level. Once they have earned their online bachelors dermatology degrees and fulfilled the pre-med requirements, students can apply to medical school to become dermatologists. The best college degrees for future dermatologists provide students with a strong foundation in areas like pathology, physiology, microbiology, and pharmacology prior to delving into dermatology course work. For example, future dermatologists must have an understanding of pharmacology before they can prescribe medicines to manage skin disorders.
The major-specific classes will build upon what students learn in those more general classes. Some major-specific classes students will take include skin pathology, minor surgery, and the treatment of issues such as chemical burns or lesions. After students complete their course work, they will enroll in a residency program during which they will study and practice their skills under licensed doctors.
Degree Levels for an X Major
- Associate. It is not possible to become a dermatologist with an associate degree alone. However, online associate dermatology degrees can provide a strong foundation that future dermatologists can use to open the path to medical schooling. Students can choose to major in a health field and then use what they’ve learned to advance their education.
- Bachelor’s. Though students cannot major in dermatology at the bachelor’s degree level, they can study on a pre-med track, which will open up the opportunity for them to pursue medical school upon graduation. A bachelor’s degree program goes into more detail than an associate degree program, and biology and other health-related majors are balanced with a general education curriculum.
- Master’s. If students feel as though they will benefit from additional schooling prior to applying to medical school, they can choose to pursue a master’s degree in a health-related field. This degree can offer them an opportunity to improve upon their grades and can help set a foundation for the course work they will take in medical school. Master’s degree programs go into greater detail than bachelor’s degree programs.
- Doctoral. Medical school is the path that potential dermatologists must take to become licensed doctors. The dermatology program will build upon the knowledge learned as an undergraduate and/or graduate student, and will prepare students for a residency program, during which they will practice what they’ve learned with licensed professionals. Doctoral degree programs also offer students the opportunity to work in academia.
A Future as a Dermatology Major
Students who finish medical school can become professional dermatologists. The best college degrees prepare students to work with other doctors or to establish their own private practice. Regardless of the specific career path chosen, dermatologists can look forward to very good job prospects and an annual salary of around $186,044, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Dermatology students can also choose to specialize in geriatrics or pediatric dermatology.
Students who do not want to finish medical school, but do want to work within the field, can become nurses or medical assistants, jobs that boast excellent job opportunities, and bring in $62,450 and $28,300 respectively, according to the BLS. However, keep in mind that these numbers are not set in stone. Salary and job availability depend on the location, the employer, and the amount of experience you have.
Students with a degree in Dermatology are considered well prepared for
becoming Skin care specialists.