Immunology is the branch of science dealing with the components of the immune system, immunity from disease, the immune response, and immunologic techniques of analysis. The immune system protects the body from pathogens and other foreign substances; destroys infected and malignant cells; and removes cellular debris.
The study of the immune system is highly important for disease prevention. If the immune system is not functioning as it should, it can result in disease, allergy, and cancer. Advancing our understanding of Immunology has facilitated the discovery of new diagnostics and treatments for such afflictions.
Immunology courses offered through Coursera equip students with the basic concepts and vocabulary of Immunology, including: T cell function and the coordination of the immune response, the cells and organs of the immune system, antigens and antibodies, and other related topics.
Lessons on Immunology are administered by Cell Biology Instructors, Biochemistry Instructors, and others from major universities through video lectures, readings, quizzes, and applied-learning projects.
A background in science or any healthcare field can be beneficial for anyone who plans to study immunology. This could include work, volunteer opportunities, and high school or college courses in topics like biology, physics, physiology, chemistry, anatomy, organic chemistry, genetics, microbiology, and psychology. This may also include work or volunteer opportunities in a research institution, laboratory, hospital, doctor's office, clinic, or nursing home. A strong background in advanced math, including calculus, is also helpful. Computer science skills can also help you. Even reading and researching about vaccines, pandemics, diseases, and viruses can help prepare you for studying immunology.
Roles in immunology typically involve either scientific research or working as a physician or other medical professional, so a desire to help others is a must for this field. Either way, you'll need to be good at research and analyzing, as well as a lifelong learner. New treatments for illnesses are discovered all the time. Good written and verbal communication skills are important for anyone in the field of immunology, as are management and leadership skills. You must have patience and empathy, especially if you're working one on one with patients. Organization, attention to detail, and problem-solving skills are also important.
Learning immunology is right for you if you're interested in the immune system, health, and diseases that affect the body. If you're interested in a career in scientific research or the healthcare field, you may consider studying immunology. Many people who choose to study this branch of biology end up going to medical school to become an immunologist or a physician in other branches of medicine, like psychiatry, oncology, virology, dermatology, or rheumatology. Studying immunology could lead to a career working in a research lab, hospital, university, or doctor's office. If you want to help people overcome illnesses and disease, studying immunology could be right for you.
This FAQ content has been made available for informational purposes only. Learners are advised to conduct additional research to ensure that courses and other credentials pursued meet their personal, professional, and financial goals.