Ph.D. Program - Coastal Carolina University
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Graduate Programs

Ph.D. Coastal and Marine Systems Science

The Ph.D. in Marine Science: Coastal and Marine Systems Science facilitates students to work with faculty on original research expanding and applying knowledge of coastal systems. Emphasis is on developing predictive capabilities of coastal environmental systems and infusing an appreciation of associated environmental policy development.


  • Jan. 15 for Fall Semester for full consideration for University graduate assistantships; however, applications for fall admission will continue to be accepted through July 1.
  • Nov. 1 for Spring Semester

Program Requirements

The curriculum for the Ph.D. in Marine Science: Coastal and Marine Systems Science (60 credit hours) is as follows:

CORE COURSES (16 credit hours)

    Complete the following courses:

CMWS 601 - Coastal Marine and Wetland Processes (3 cr.)
CMWS 602 - Coastal Marine and Wetland Ecology (3 cr.)
CMWS 603 - Coastal and Wetland Policy and Management (3 cr.)
CMWS 609 - Coastal and Marine Systems Science Seminar (4 cr.)*

    Choose one course from the following:

CMWS 610 - Applied Experimental Designs & Analyses (3 cr.)
CMWS 611 - Modeling of the Atmosphere and Ocean (3 cr.)
CMWS 615 - Advanced Experimental Designs and Analyses (3 cr.)
CMWS 618 - Temporal and Spatial Analysis (3 cr.)
CMWS 620 - Introduction to Scientific Computing (3 cr.)
GEOG 611 - GIS Fundamentals (3 cr.)
STAT 604 - Applied Statistics for Research I (3 cr.)
Or other approved courses


Graduate coursework approved from an earned master's degree and/or required by a student's Graduate Advisory Committee.

CMSS  799 - Dissertation Research (1-21 cr.)

* One credit-hour course is required for four semesters.
** With the approval of the graduate director, a student's Graduate Advisory Committee may specify other coursework to satisfy the core or specialized course requirements to suit a student's particular needs and the objectives of the curriculum.

For course descriptions, please view the Graduate Catalog »

Contact us for additional information or questions about the program.

Diane Fribance, Ph.D.
Associate Professor/Interim Chair
Department of Marine Science
Science Annex II Room 227
Erin Hackett, Ph.D. 
Professor/Director of Graduate Programs
Coastal Science Center 151A
Cobi Christiansen
Director of Marine Science Student Services
Coastal Science Center 151K