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Graduate Courses in Marine Biology - Winter 2014

OCSC 7531: Biological Oceanography

Faculty Contact: Dr. Christopher C. Parrish, Department of Ocean Sciences, Tel.: 864-3225; e-mail:

Course Description:

This is a core course in the Graduate Program in Marine Biology, however, students in other programs and departments are welcome to take it. The aim of this course is to provide students with a general understanding of the biological processes that occur in oceanic and coastal environments. The course will progressively build on the theme that the physical, geological, and chemical environments play a key role within and among biological communities. The course will begin by providing a biogeochemical framework for invited seminars by local biological oceanographers. Much of the material used in this course will be derived from the current scientific literature. The course will also foster critical appraisal of this literature, as well as experimental design and communication skills applicable to oceanographic research.

Course Evaluation:

Weekly Critiques/Quantitative Assignments 30%

Class Participation 10%

Oral Presentations/Discussion 30%

Extended Written Critique 30%


OCSC 7540: Plankton Dynamics

Faculty Contact: Dr. Richard Rivkin, Department of Ocean Sciences Office Tel. 709-864-3720. Email

Course Description

This graduate studies course will examine the selected aspects of the ecology, food web interactions and dynamics of marine plankton (i.e. bacterioplankton, phytoplankton and zooplankton). The focus of this course will be to evaluate the interactions among the different trophic levels and the interactions of food webs with upper ocean biogeochemical processes. The course will meet once per week for three hours and the class structure will combine lecture and student-lead critical review of current literature in the fields of marine plankton ecology and biogeochemistry. The goal of this course is to provide students with the understanding of the role and regulation of marine food web within the context of ocean biogeochemistry and ocean-climate interactions.

Course Evaluation: Students will be evaluated based upon class participation, a term paper, a research proposal and an oral presentation.

Class participation 30%

Oral presentation 25%

Research Proposal 20 %

Term paper 25%


OCSC 7551/ BIOL 7551: Fisheries Resource Management

Instructor: Dr. Joe Wroblewski, Department of Ocean Sciences, Office: Physics/Chem Bldg C-4047, Tel.: 864-2410 (office); e-mail:

Course Description:

This graduate studies course takes a global view of marine fisheries resource management, currently in crisis from failure of governments to prevent the collapse of many major commercial fisheries. The objectives, principles and quantitative theory of fisheries management are reviewed. Classroom discussions include the role of industry, federal and regional governments, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in managing living marine resources, both wild stocks and cultured species.

Course Evaluation:

Participation in classroom discussions of assigned readings 25%

Oral presentation of a topic with printed handout and references 40%

Computer simulation modeling using Excel software 35%