Why Zoology?

How will climate change impact animal populations? How does pollution affect fish behaviour? Zoology can help us understand past, present and future connections between animals and the environment, including the impact of human activities. 

Through the Zoology major, students take an interdisciplinary approach to studying animals, including through animal biology, ecology and evolution, and deepen their studies with hands-on experiences, including organism-specific lab courses.

After building a foundation in the biological sciences, Zoology majors have the flexibility to choose courses in topics of interest to them, including mammalogy, ornithology, herpetology and fish biology.

If you're interested in studying Zoology, you may also be interested in Animal Biology, Animal Science, Marine and Freshwater Biology, Wildlife Biology and Conservation, or other majors. (Note that Animal Biology and Animal Science focus mainly on domesticated animals, including pets and livestock, whereas Zoology studies all animals.)

To see all courses offered in this degree, visit our 2024-2025 Academic Calendar.

 Develop Your Knowledge of Animal Life

This major provides you with a broad foundation in animal biology and biodiversity, from the molecular to population level, with courses in physiology, ecology, evolution, and structure and function of invertebrates and vertebrates.

 Gain Hands-On Experience

Take your studies beyond the classroom and participate in a field course, international exchange, or research project, and contribute to our knowledge of the animal kingdom. Past students have participated in field courses on both coasts of Canada, in Algonquin Park and the Northern Studies Centre in Manitoba, as well as Australia, Argentina, Iceland and Costa Rica.

What Can You Do With a Degree in Zoology?

With their mix of practical experience, gained through lab, field and research courses, and knowledge, including in strategies for conservation at the individual, population and community levels, Zoology graduates are well prepared for a wide range of careers in public and private sectors.

Here are a few careers our graduates have successfully pursued:

  • Agricultural Zoologist
  • Animal Care and Research Assistant
  • Animal Ecologist
  • Aquatic Research Scientist
  • Avian Biologist
  • Biology Teacher
  • Communications Lead
  • Consultation Biologist
  • Field Biologist
  • Fisheries Biologist
  • Habitat Developer
  • Health Educator
  • Laboratory Manager
  • Museum Curator
  • Nature Reserves Manager
  • Researcher
  • Resource Management Officer
  • Science Journalist
  • Senior Policy Advisor
  • Senior Specialist, Natural Heritage Management
  • Stewardship Officer
  • Sustainability Manager
  • Terrestrial and Wetland Biology
  • Wildlife Biologist
  • Zoo Attendant
Victoria Virag
Just as a safari takes you deep into the heart of the wilderness to witness nature’s wonders up close, the Zoology program immerses you in the fascinating world of animals. We are not treated as just students; we are curious explorers, encouraged to ask questions and engage in passionate discussions. Balancing hands-on experiences like dissections and live animal handling, alongside enlightening lectures on evolution, the Zoology program serves as a guiding light, helping you make well-informed career decisions.

Victoria Virag, Undergraduate Student

As an international student from Italy, I chose the University of Guelph for its top-ranked veterinary school and animal science programs designed to gain hands-on experience in your undergrad. In my first year, I have had opportunities to do lab work and learn practical foundational skills in seminars. Joining the Future Vets Club, I took a field trip to the Toronto Zoo to see backstage clinics and meet vets pursuing my passion. I am amazed by how much I am learning about animals and their habitats, and can't wait to apply that knowledge to make a difference with endangered species. 

Chiara, Undergraduate Student

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