University of Sydney Handbooks - 2021 Archive

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Marine Science

Study in the discipline of Marine Science is offered as an interdisciplinary major. Units of study in this major are available at standard and advanced level.

About the major

The Marine Science major draws together relevant material to create a multi-disciplinary curriculum that provides you with in-depth knowledge in a range of marine science disciplines. The major is explicitly science-based but seeks to provide you with a broader range of capabilities and an interdisciplinary mind-set to service the large and growing demand for coastal and marine experts in a range of fields. You will take both biological and geological marine science units of study but with flexibility to choose your level of exposure within either of those broad disciplines.

Requirements for completion

The Marine Science major and minor requirements are listed in the Marine Science unit of study table.

Contact and further information


T +61 2 9036 9245


The University of Sydney Marine Studies Institute
Room 308, Madsen Building F09
University of Sydney NSW 2006

School of Life and Environmental Sciences
Level 5, Carslaw Building F07
University of Sydney NSW 2006

School of Geosciences
Room 348, Madsen Building F09
The University of Sydney NSW 2006

Undergraduate advisors:

A/Prof Will Figueira (SOLES)
T +61 2 9351 2039

A/Prof Ana Vila-Concejo (GEOS)
T +61 2 9351 5190

Learning Outcomes

Students who graduate from Marine Science will be able to:

  1. Exhibit a broad and coherent body of knowledge of marine processes and habitats, including their importance in sustaining biodiversity and life on the planet.
  2. Exhibit a deep understanding of the principles, concepts and methods of marine science and assess the role of inquiry in furthering knowledge within the discipline.
  3. Recognise the multidisciplinarity of marine science and the complex interlinkages between bio- and geosciences in understanding biophysical processes.
  4. Evaluate the geological and biophysical processes that shape and influence marine and coastal environments.
  5. Collect, analyse and visualise data using state-of-the-art technology such as big data, numerical modelling and geographic information systems.
  6. Source, synthesise and critically evaluate marine and coastal information, data and observations from a range of relevant sources.
  7. Communicate concepts and analyses in marine science to diverse audiences from a range of backgrounds through a variety of modes, using evidence-based arguments that are robust to critique.
  8. Work effectively, responsibly and ethically in individual and peer or team contexts and be independent, self-directed learners.
  9. Design and carry out field, laboratory, or virtual experiments, selecting appropriate hypothesis testing or modelling techniques, and interpret, analyse and evaluate outcomes.
  10. Address real-world problems in marine science, working professionally and responsibly within collaborative, interdisciplinary teams.
  11. Recognise the social and cultural context within which marine and coastal environments exist and describe how these contexts can influence scientific and management practice.