MSc in Marine Biology

Key Points

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The MSc Marine Biology aims to train graduates in multiple areas of marine biology and equip them with professional certificates in Sea Survival, Powerboat Handling and Marine Radio, as well as an introductory course in first aid and necessary field skills.

Program description

The areas of marine biology covered in this MSc course include fisheries and aquaculture, genetics, marine ecology and conservation, marine mammals and ecological aspects of Geographic Information Systems (GIS). In addition, the course has a significant fieldwork component that includes work on the boat, as well as training in sampling and survey techniques. This course, run entirely by the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences at University College Cork, will provide an understanding of these diverse disciplines and skills needed to meet the growing demand for trained marine biologists at home and abroad.

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Describe key marine flora and fauna, the marine environment and its biological and physical properties and processes.
  • Assess the sustainability of exploitation (fisheries and aquaculture) and evaluate the impact of other anthropogenic factors on the marine environment.
  • Define management and conservation functions in the marine environment.
  • Demonstrate a broad range of research (field and laboratory) skills, including professional and safety-related qualifications.
  • Apply the knowledge and skills acquired in this course in the work environment to enable policy development.

Program structure

Part I of the course consists of eight modules worth 60 credits including lectures, practicals, seminars and fieldwork. Part II is a substantial research project to the value of 30 credits for those who pass Part I. The four-month research project is assessed by a dissertation, a project seminar and an assessment of your practical ability throughout the duration of the project.
  • Marine Megafauna (10 credits)
  • Marine fisheries and aquaculture (10 credits)
  • Study techniques and marine fieldwork (10 credits)
  • Practical Marine Workplace Skills (5 credits)
  • Marine ecology and conservation (10 credits)
  • Ecological Applications of Geographic Information Systems (5 credits)
  • Genetics and marine environment (5 credits)
  • Ocean Innovation and Sustainability (5 credits)
  • Marine Biology Research Project (30 credits)

Admission requirements

  • Candidates for the MSc in Marine Biology must have obtained a bachelor’s degree with honours in any biological science or relevant equivalent area.
  • In addition, NFQ Level 8 graduates with relevant professional qualifications or experience, but without relevant degree classification, may also apply for entry and each case will be judged on a case-by-case basis as to their suitability for the programme, subject to the approval of the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Food Science.
  • In the case of international candidates, the foreign equivalent is required. In addition, a degree officially translated into English will be required.
  • IELTS 6.5, with no less than 6 in any component (or its internationally recognised equivalent).

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