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"The MSc in Physical Oceanography at the University of Bangor, which has received NERC funding since 1965, meets a critical skills need in the UK for modellers and numerate environmental scientists." NERC 4 Feb 2011

"The School of Ocean Science at Bangor... is generally regarded as the best institute in Europe for physical oceanography." New Scientist 22nd October 2008

This 12 month taught postgraduate course introduces students with a first degree in the physical, mathematical or other numerate sciences to the subject of Physical Oceanography. The course has run for over 40 years and is unique in the UK for the depth of physical oceanography training provided. As well as giving an overview of physical oceanography, the course enable students to study in detail those aspects of the subject for which they have particular interest.

Course Objectives

  1. Provide a thorough training in the theory and application of physical oceanography.
  2. Familiarize the student with modern oceanographic instrumentation and observational techniques.
  3. Introduce state-of-the-art computational fluid dynamics, data analysis and fundamental modelling methods.
  4. Provide the student with the practical experience and physical understanding necessary to address significant problems in the coastal ocean environment.

Modules for the current academic year

Module listings are for guide purposes only and are subject to change. Find out what our students are currently studying on the Physical Oceanography Modules page.

Careers & Employability

This course has run for over 40 years and past students have gone on to become Nobel Laureates, directors of the main UK Oceanographic laboratories and managing directors of major commercial oceanographic companies. Many hold posts in the marine industries, particularly in consultancy companies that provide services in oceanography to the oil industry and companies concerned with engineering operations in shelf seas. There are opportunities in Government Laboratories and agencies with responsibility for estuarine and coastal waters. Many graduates have continued to higher degrees and an academic career.

Recent figures show that 50% of MSc APO students have proceeded to a PhD, whilst 20% went straight into jobs in commercial oceanography and a further 10% oceanography related jobs in the public sectors.


Visit the Physical Oceanography - MSc page on the Bangor University website for more details!

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