• Total units 48 Units
  • Areas of interest Earth and Marine Sciences, Chemistry, Physics, Biology
  • Major code MARS-MAJ
  • Academic career Undergraduate

Marine ecosystems play a central role in the health and function of our planet. Given the increasing exploitation and modification by humankind, there is an urgent need for us to study and understand marine systems if management strategies are to succeed.

The Marine Science major is a multidisciplinary science program at the ANU that encompasses many fields, in particular, biology, chemistry, geology and physics, with an emphasis on understanding the coastal and open ocean environment through field, laboratory and modelling approaches.

This program aims at equipping students with the tools to understand and monitor coastal and oceanic processes and interactions between the atmosphere, biosphere and geosphere under an ever changing climate that may affect marine resources. A major in Marine Sciences opens up possibilities for work in government agencies and science education. It serves as a pathway to higher degree research at Australian or overseas universities.

Learning Goals:

On completing the major in Marine Science students will be able to:

  1. Overview the advancement of the discipline and how that has influenced modern Marine Science.
  2. Have an understanding of the evolution of the oceans, and the organisms contained within, from a molecular to the global scale.
  3. Quantitatively analyse marine environments using a variety of observations and techniques.
  4. Draw on diverse learning environments including field, laboratory and classroom settings encompassing individual and group learning.
  5. Perform process-oriented, multidisciplinary studies to critically evaluate hypotheses and models on how our oceans and the life within operate.
  6. Write scientific reports and communicate efficiently with university staff, peer students and the wider community on Marine Science topics.
  7. Conduct themselves in a way that reflects professional expectations within the discipline.

Other Information

Advice to Students

What 1st year courses should you enrol in? EMSC1006

Students are encouraged in first year to take appropriate foundation courses in earth science, mathematics, chemistry, physics, biology and /or environmental science Because of the interdisciplinary nature of Marine Sciences. Some of the first year courses in these disciplines are required as a basis for higher-level Marine Science courses.

Students should seek further course advice from the academic convener of this Marine Sciences major.

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Major Requirements

This major requires the completion of 48 units, which must include:

6 units from completion of the following course(s):

Code Title Units
EMSC1006 The Blue Planet: An Introduction to Earth System Science 6

6 units from completion of the following course(s):

Code Title Units
CHEM1101 Chemistry 1 OR 6
CHEM1201 Chemistry 2 OR 6
BIOL1009 Diversity of Life 6

A minimum of 12 units must come from completion of courses from the following list:

Code Title Units
EMSC2014 Sedimentology and Stratigraphy 6
EMSC2019 Geobiology and Evolution of Life on Earth 6
EMSC2021 Fundamentals of Climate System Science 6
ENVS2004 Weather, Climate and Fire 6
PHYS2016 Electromagnetism 6
MATH2305 Applied Mathematics I 6

A minimum of 18 units must come from completion of courses from the following list:

Code Title Units
EMSC3019 Coral Reef Field Studies 6
EMSC3023 Marine Biogeochemistry 6
EMSC3025 Groundwater 6
EMSC3027 Palaeoclimatology and Climate Change 6
BIOL3116 Marine Conservation Ecology 6
ENVS3013 Climatology 6
ENVS3029 Palaeo-Environmental Reconstruction 6
PHYS3034 Physics of Fluid Flows 6

A maximum of 6 units may come from completion of courses from the following list:

Code Title Units
BIOL3208 Biology Research Project 6
EMSC3050 Special Topics 6
  ENVS 3010: Independent Research Project
PHYS3042 Research Topics Physics 6
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