• Offered by Research School of Earth Sciences
  • ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
  • Classification Transitional
  • Course subject Earth and Marine Science
  • Areas of interest Earth and Marine Sciences, Marine Biology
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Prof Michael Ellwood
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Co-taught Course
  • Offered in First Semester 2022
    See Future Offerings

See https://www.anu.edu.au/covid-19-advice. In Sem 1 2022, this course is delivered on campus with adjustments for remote participants.

This is an advanced course that explores the relationships between marine chemistry, marine biological and geochemical processes - with a focus on developing an understanding of the interplay and responses between ocean chemistry, marine biology and global change. Topics covered include the theory and application of chemical and isotopic tracers in oceanography and palaeoceanography, macro- and micro-nutrient cycling, sediment and suspended particulate interactions, element speciation, and biomineralization. Practical work will cover a range of standard and sophisticated laboratory methods for nutrients, elemental, isotopic and chemical speciation analysis, as well as a field sampling excursion to the South Coast of NSW.

This course is co-taught with undergraduate students but assessed separately.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Explain the chemical processes that influence carbon uptake by the ocean
  2. Comprehend the processes involved determining the nutrient structure of the ocean
  3. Undertake chemical analysis of water samples collected in the field setting and relate them to theory
  4. Describe the biogeochemical processes that influence compounds and organisms in the ocean and interpret findings within the recent literature

Other Information

There will be a 2-day field trip to Narooma. 

The date for this trip in 2021 is Saturday and Sunday 27-28 February.

Students are required to pay a contribution towards the cost of the field trip; expected to be approximately $150- $180.

Payment can be made online at ScienceShop http://scienceshop.anu.edu.au/

Indicative Assessment

  1. Practical/laboratory assignments (35) [LO 2,3]
  2. Essay or poster presentation (15) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  3. Theory examination (40) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  4. Online quizzes (10) [LO 1,2,3,4]

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


The expected workload will consist of approximately 130 hours throughout the semester including:

  • Face-to face component which may consist of 2 x 1 hour lectures plus one 1 x 3 hour practical per week
  • A weekend field trip to Narooma over the weekend after Week 1
  • Approximately 56 hours of self directed study which will include preparation for lectures, presentations and other assessment tasks.

Inherent Requirements

In this course, students learn how to analyse samples in the laboratory. This requires students to be able to:

  • make and interpret visual observations
  • safely participate in the chemistry laboratories

Students who can provide evidence they cannot meet these requirements may be able to negotiate alternative assessment and participation requirements with the course convenor.

Students in this course have the option to participate in an overnight trip to collect seawater samples. To participate in this trip, students must be able to:

  • Travel to the coastal location and stay nearby
  • Safely participate in a half day research boat trip

Students who cannot meet these requirements cannot choose to participate in this optional trip. For more information, please refer to the trip information page.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must have completed 6 units of 1000 level CHEM courses or be enrolled in the Master of Earth Sciences (Advanced) or the Master of Science in Earth Sciences. Incompatible with EMSC3023 and GEOL3023.

Prescribed Texts


Assumed Knowledge

Bachelor degree with a broad chemistry background


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2022 $4200
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2022 $6000
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

First Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
3181 21 Feb 2022 28 Feb 2022 31 Mar 2022 27 May 2022 In Person View

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