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View Printable Marine Science Description

Marine Science


Description of the Major:

Marine Science at Coastal Carolina University is an interdisciplinary field where students receive diversified training in marine science by taking courses in marine biology, marine chemistry, marine geology, and physical oceanography.  Upon completion of the core courses, students are encouraged to select an area of emphasis that may include:  marine biology, coastal geology, marine analytical technology, marine/environmental chemistry or ocean/atmosphere dynamics.

The Student Experience:

  • Coastal Carolina University has the largest undergraduate marine science program on the east coast.
  • Department facilities include a lecture/laboratory complex, computer research labs and research vessels.  The University also owns part of a pristine barrier island called Waties Island, used for course activities and student research, and houses the Burroughs & Chapin Center for Marine and Wetland Studies, where students and faculty work on a wide range of projects including coastal geology, wastershed/environmental quality, and environmental education.
  • Internship opportunities are available at sites such as Ripley's Aquarium, Huntington Beach State Park, Myrtle Beach State Park, and other organizations across the nation.
  • Off-site field courses for students include coral reef ecology held in Discovery Bay, Jamaica, and shark biology at the Bimini Biological Field Station in the Bahamas.
  • Exchange programs provide an opportunity to spend a semester abroad at Deakin University in Australia and many other locations around the world.
  • Students who are residents of Academic Common Market states (AR, KY, LA, MD, MS, OK, TN, VA and WV) and who are accepted as marine science majors may qualify for in-state tuition rates.

Beyond the Classroom:

Marine Science majors are prepared for a variety of careers including:

  • marine scientist for federal, state and local governments and private industry

  • environmental educator with aquariums, schools, parks and the tourism industry

  • teacher/educator

  • scientific technician

  • aquaculturist

  • aquarist/trainer

  • land-use planner

Areas of Study:

Students will take introductory foundation courses in the sciences (including biology, calculus, chemistry, marine science, physics, and statistics); an upper-level course in each of the main sub-disciplines of marine biology, marine chemistry, marine geology and physical oceanography; and upper-level elective courses in an area of emphasis.  Examples of upper-level elective courses include:

MSCI 331 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS) & Remote Sensing
MSCI 375 Biology of Marine Mammals
MSCI 355 Environmental Ecotoxicology
MSCI 445 Coastal Processes
MSCI 477 Ecology of Coral Reefs

For More Information:

  • Jane Guentzel, Ph.D., Chair of the Department, 843-349-2374 or jguentzel@coastal.edu