Which Professional Membership Body is right for me?

There are various Professional Bodies in science, all with something slightly different to offer. However, they all aim to support you in your professional development.

They may offer any or all of the following:

  • Training and education in the form of courses, lectures, workshops or online resources
  • Information on the scientific discipline in the form of journals and magazines or online resources
  • Networking opportunities
  • Career advice
  • Support for the non-science skills required to develop your career
  • Volunteering opportunities
  • Library facilities
  • Meeting facilities

Depending on the level of membership you achieve you may be able to signify that with postnominals.

In choosing you may want to join a body that focuses on the scientific discipline you were training in or now work in.  Examples are bodies such as:

  • The Royal Society of Biology
  • The Royal Society of Chemistry
  • The Institute of Physics (IoP)
  • The Geological Society (GeolSoc)
  • The British Psychological Society (BPS)
  • Royal Statistical Society (RSS)
  • Institute of Mathematics and its Applications
  • College of Podiatry (CPod)
  • Institution of Environmental Sciences (IES)

However there also bodies that focus on those working in an industry sector, for example:

  • The Institute of Water (IoW)
  • Institute of Brewing & Distilling (IBD)
  • The Nuclear Institute (NI)
  • The Energy Institute (EI)
  • Institute of Food Science and Technology (IFST)
  • British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES)
  • Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management (CIWEM)
  • BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT
  • British Society of Soil Science (BSSS)

Some bodies focus on the type of employment:

  • Association for Clinical Biochemistry and Laboratory Medicine (ACB)
  • BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT
  • Institute of Marine Engineering, Science and Technology (IMarEST)
  • Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS)
  • British Society of Soil Science (BSSS)
  • Association for Science Education (ASE)
  • Association for Simulated Practice in Healthcare (ASPiH)
  • Institute of Corrosion (ICorr)
  • Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine (IPEM)
  • Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM3)

Some on the type of employee:

  • Association of Neurophysiological Scientists (ANS)
  • Institute of Science and Technology (IST)
  • Association of Anatomical Pathology Technology (AAPT)
  • Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE)

Some focus on the skill used:

  • Operational Research Society (ORS)
  • Institute of Mathematics and its Applications (IMA)
  • Royal Statistical Society (RSS)

Some Professional Bodies cover more than one aspect.

To become a registrant, you will need to be or become a member of a licensed Professional Body.  You can do that as part of your application.

If you are not sure which body to choose, pick the one that seems relevant to you. Try it out for a year and then, if you want, change to another.  You can keep your registration so long as you choose another licensed body.  You can use the form below to notify us of any changes:

Registration Transfer Form

If you do not see a Professional Body that seems relevant to you, please send us an email and let us know which body you would like to choose or are already a member of and we will see if they meet the standards for a Science Council licensed body.