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Ocean Science - MSci (Hons)


Course Description

Ocean acidification, energy resources, coastal erosion and flooding are just some of the issues that make ocean science such an important component when addressing the world’s most pressing environmental, energy and construction challenges. This course allows you to tailor your study towards employment in a specific sector including oceanographic and environmental research and consultancy, marine renewable energy, marine conservation management, offshore exploration and hydrographic surveying.

You will equip yourself for a career in hydrographic surveying by choosing the hydrography pathway in the final year - study the exploration and sustainable management of marine resources, construction and environmental support. You’ll conduct a research or consultancy-type project closely linked to one of our marine science research groups or industrial partners, providing an experience of working with established marine scientists and contributing to current work in a wider context.

Key features

-Gain a sound knowledge base across all areas of ocean science with options to develop specialist skills in marine conservation, oceanography or hydrography.
-Specialise in subjects that most interest you including coastal dynamics, seafloor mapping, physical oceanography, meteorology, remote sensing, offshore exploration, biological oceanography, marine pollution and conservation.
-Equip yourself for a career in hydrographic surveying by choosing the hydrography pathway in the final year (with potential high-level professional FIG/IHO/ICA accreditation) - study the exploration and sustainable management of marine resources, construction and environmental support.
-Conduct a research or consultancy-type project closely linked to one of our marine science research groups or industrial partners, providing an experience of working with established marine scientists and contributing to current work in a wider context.
-Develop your range of practical skills with our own fully-equipped fleet of boats, a new £4.65 million Marine Station used as a base for fieldwork afloat, industry standard oceanographic and surveying equipment and a type-approved ship simulator.
-Option to take the industry-recognised professional diving qualification (HSE Professional SCUBA) alongside your degree, and an optional scientific diving module to provide training and qualification for diving-based research projects and employment (limited places and additional costs apply).
-Experience an overseas field course that's aimed at integrating ocean science knowledge and understanding across the different sub-disciplines.

Course details

Year 1
Your first year, shared across the Marine Science Undergraduate Scheme, introduces the full range of topics within the degree and develops your underpinning scientific knowledge and practical skills. You’ll develop your understanding of the Earth’s oceans and the key physical, chemical, biological processes that occur in these systems. You’ll build practical skills and enhance your ability to analyse, present and interpret scientific data through field-based activities.

Core modules
-OS101 Introduction to Ocean Science
-OS103 Biology and Hydrography of the Ocean
-OS105 Mapping the Marine Environment
-OS102 Physical and Chemical Processes of the Ocean
-OS104 Measuring the Marine Environment

Optional modules
-GEES1002PP Climate Change and Energy
-GEES1003PP Sustainable Futures
-GOV1000PP One Planet? Society and Sustainability
-ENGL405PP Making Waves: Representing the Sea, Then and Now
-GEES1001PP Natural Hazards
-OS106PP Our Ocean Planet
-OS107PP Space Exploration

Year 2
In your second year, the emphasis will be on understanding core aspects of ocean science, including topics in ocean exploration, oceanography and marine conservation, and enhancing your practical and research skills. You’ll participate in a field work module based at our Marine Station, learning how to use industry standard instrumentation and software for measuring a variety of parameters in the coastal zone and you’ll develop a proposal for your final year project. There's also opportunity to apply scientific diving skills gained alongside the degree for suitably qualified individuals.

Core modules
-OS201 Global Ocean Processes
-OS202 Monitoring the Marine Environment
-OS206 Researching the Marine Environment

Optional modules
-OS208 Meteorology
-OS209 Marine Remote Sensing
-OS207 Scientific Diving
-OS203 Seafloor Mapping
-OS204 Waves, Tides and Coastal Dynamics
-OS205 Managing Human Impacts in the Marine Environment

Year 3
You’ll focus on topics with special relevance to your future plans including options across the specialisms offered through the related BSc Marine Science courses. A residential field course allows you to develop a group-based in-situ investigative study. A large part of the year is spent completing a research project, carrying out an in-depth investigation under the guidance of a member of academic staff.

Optional modules
-BPIE338 Ocean Science Placement

Year 4
Pathway options in the final year provide both an opportunity for you to pursue your choice of topic in greater depth and an opportunity to increase the breadth of your study through modules from the applied contemporary offerings of our Marine Science MSc programmes: Applied Marine Science, Marine Renewable Energy and Hydrography. You’ll conduct a research or consultancy-type project closely linked to one of our internationally-leading marine science research groups or industrial partners, providing an experience of working with established marine scientists.

Optional modules
-MAR517 Coastal Erosion and Protection
-MATH523 Modelling Coastal Processes
-MAR520 Hydrography
-MAR522 Survey Project Management
-MAR515 Management of Coastal Environments
-MAR518 Remote Sensing and GIS
-MAR521 Acoustic and Oceanographic Surveying
-MAR507 Economics of the Marine Environment
-MAR523 Digital Mapping
-MAR516 Contemporary Issues in Marine Science
-MAR519 Modelling Marine Processes

Every undergraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the course aims, the course structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

Visit the Ocean Science - MSci (Hons) page on the Plymouth University website for more details!

Entry Requirements

Minimum of 2 A levels to include grade C in relevant science such as: biology, chemistry, environmental science, geography, geology, mathematics or physics.

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