Geneticists unravel the mysteries of DNA and heredity like scientific sleuths. Those working for pharmaceutical companies work to find origins of genetic diseases and birth defects, and develop treatments for them. Other geneticists work in agricultural research, developing crops that can grow in atypical conditions or to abnormal sizes. Geneticists can work in crime labs, using DNA sampling to solve cases and provide evidence. They can also work as genetic counselors, working directly with parents that could be at risk for having children with birth defects. A bachelor’s degree in chemistry or biology followed by a doctorate is required to perform independent research.