Ocean Sciences, or Oceanography, is a field that encompasses the study of the global marine environment from broad geographic and disciplinary perspectives. It essentially looks at the interaction between marine life and oceanic processes, covering such diverse topics as coastal and deep-sea food webs, marine animal ecology, physiology and behaviour, plankton dynamics, the effects of pollution or climate change on ocean life and ecosystems, the management and conservation of aquatic resources, and much more.
Our planet is predominantly covered by a vast ocean, which plays a key role in driving its climate and ecosystems, directly or indirectly affecting the lives of most of its inhabitants. Therefore, job opportunities and career perspectives for students with training in Ocean Sciences are extremely varied and rewarding.
Trainees and graduates may find work as laboratory technicians or research assistants in ocean-related fields such as:
• Marine biology
• Wildlife management
Other potential positions may include, but are not limited to:
• Marine science educator
• Fisheries officer
• Nature interpreter
• Aquarium curator
• Environmental analyst/consultant
• Scuba diver
Importantly, students with a Major in Ocean Sciences are well prepared to undertake graduate studies (MSc, PhD) in various ocean-related fields, leading to further professional and academic positions in government, research or higher education.
Major in Ocean Sciences
This is an interdisciplinary program administered by the Department of Ocean Sciences, providing a solid foundation in ocean studies, including the basic principles of its main sub-disciplines (physical, chemical, geological, and biological oceanography). Major in Ocean Sciences.
Major in Ocean Sciences (Environmental Systems)
This program is a stream of the above that provides a geological/geographical context to biological and chemical phenomena in ocean sciences. It also covers such key ocean-related topics as climate change and natural hazards. Major in Ocean Sciences (Environmental Systems).
Joint Major in Marine Biology
This program is jointly administered by the Department of Ocean Sciences and the Department of Biology. It consists of core courses in oceanography and biology, and additional courses in various Science subjects. Joint Major in Marine Biology.
Minor in Oceanography
This is an interdisciplinary program administered by the Department of Ocean Sciences in cooperation with the departments of Biology, Chemistry, Earth Sciences and Physics and Physical Oceanography. It is intended primarily for students in the Faculty of Science but is open to students in other faculties. Minor in Oceanography.
Minor in Sustainable Aquaculture and Fisheries Ecology (SAFE)
This program exposes students to aquaculture and fisheries management practices and helps prepare them for a career in applied marine fields. This is an interdisciplinary program administered by the Department of Ocean Sciences in consultation with the Marine Institute. It is intended primarily for students in the Faculty of Science but is open to students in other faculties. Minor in Sustainable Aquaculrue and Fisheries Ecology.
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Department of Ocean Sciences
St. John’s, NL