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Applied Marine Science (MSc)

Course Description

Coastal erosion. Threatened resources. Pollution. With increasing awareness of the importance of the world's oceans as a natural resource and of their role in the stability of the global climate and environment, marine science specialists are in high demand. Our vocational programme provides you with the scientific knowledge, skills and experience – together with practical field experience carried out with local marine partners and companies – you need for an exciting career in marine science.

Key features

- Join a long established (1991), well-respected programme with an excellent record for employment in the marine sciences sector.

- Develop confidence and competence in the theoretical and practical dimensions of marine science, deepening your scientific knowledge of the coastal environment and the pressures placed on it.

- Gain the skills and knowledge required to work as a marine scientist through a vocationally relevant programme, while also benefitting from our strong research-based teaching, supported by our marine research groups.

- Become experienced in coastal zone management using a range of practical techniques and approaches to problem solving.

- Connect with local marine organisations through the Plymouth Marine Sciences Partnership, which includes the Universities' Marine Institute, Marine Biological Association, Plymouth Marine Laboratory and the National Marine Aquarium.

- Make the most of our links to commercial consultancy companies, local councils and environmental organisations that can provide project ideas and supervision on your dissertation.

- Access an extensive range of field/laboratory equipment, including the COaST laboratories, our research vessel RV Falcon Spirit and a new waterfront marine centre.

- Build the skills required to assimilate knowledge over a wide range of disciplines and apply them to environmental analysis.

- Benefit from the option of studying this programme part time.

NB. If you prefer to focus on research, or want to prepare for your PhD, take a look at our MRes Applied Marine Science programme.

Course details

Our programme is 100 per cent coursework assessed and teaching activities are based around taught modules, field and laboratory work and an extended research project. There are visits to local bays and estuaries and a field week working with complex instrumentation in the lab and at sea. Semester one modules include management of coastal environments, marine science and research skills and methods. In the second semester students follow one core module in contemporary issues in marine science and choose two option modules from: remote sensing and geographical information systems, managing marine ecosystems, coastal erosion and protection, economics of the marine environment and modelling marine processes. You can carry out your research project and dissertation over both semesters in any area of marine science, working with experts within the University and external bodies (e.g. PML, Fugro-GEOS) in the UK and abroad. Topics include projects in both pure and applied research.


The University aims to make the application procedure as simple and efficient as possible. Our Postgraduate Admissions and Enquiries team are on hand to offer help and can put you in touch with the appropriate faculty if you wish to discuss any programme in detail. If you have a disability and would like further information about the support provided by Plymouth University, please visit our Disability Assist Services website. Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office via our how to apply webpage or email .

Visit the Applied Marine Science (MSc) page on the Plymouth University website for more details!

Entry Requirements

A good honours degree or equivalent preferably in a science or engineering subject. If you don’t have any recent formal qualifications, we may accept work place experience. If you have overseas qualifications you can check how they compare with the UK equivalent through UK NARIC, who provide an advisory service. If English is not your first language then we’ll need evidence of your proficiency in English. The minimum IELTS score usually accepted is 6.5. Our International Office has more information.

Course Fees

Full-time: UK/EU: £5,660, International: £13,250, Islands: £13,250; Part-time (per 10 credits): UK/EU: £314, International: £750, Islands: £750

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