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BSc - Marine Science as a major

Please note:  Marine Science is available from 2024, and is only available in Tauranga.

If you're intrigued by the natural world around you, or enjoy understanding how things work, Waikato's Bachelor of Science (BSc) is what you're looking for. Putting into practice what you learn in your lectures is a major part of this degree. You will gain hands-on experience with some of the most up-to-date and high-tech computing facilities and laboratory equipment.

This exciting new subject covers the science of marine systems including ecology, physical processes, ecosystem restoration and conservation.

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Key information

Years: 3
Points: 360
Start Dates: Trimester A (March) and Trimester B (July)
Estimated Fees* (Domestic): $7,821 per year
Estimated Fees* (International): $36,830 - $38,305 per year
Entry Requirements: Undergraduate International
Area of Study:
All amounts are in New Zealand Dollars (NZD). *Tuition fees shown are indicative only and may change. There are additional fees and charges related to enrolment please see the Table of Fees and Charges for more information. You will be sent an enrolment agreement which will confirm your fees.

Career opportunities

  • Fisheries biologist/manager
  • Marine conservationist
  • Marine ecologist
  • Marine educator/outreach specialist
  • Marine policy analyst/advocate
  • Scientific diver

Degree Planner

Degree planner — BSc in Marine Science

If no point value is listed, papers are worth 15 points.

Year 1

One from List A:
Science Fundamentals

One from List A:
Science Fundamentals

One from List C:
Science Numeracy



Year 2

Marine Conservation and Spatial Management

One from List C:
Science Numeracy




Year 3

300 level
Science paper

One from List B:
Work-Integrated Learning




  • Major
  • Compulsory
  • Elective
This information is provisional and subject to change.

Roberta Marcoli Everyone at Waikato was so welcoming; they were keen to listen, help and cheer for me, even in the hardest parts of my PhD. I never once felt ‘international’.

Read stories from other Marine Science students

The major in Marine Science provides students with the opportunity to develop graduate attributes that are recognised as appropriate by professional scientists working within the broad subject areas of marine ecology, coastal physical processes, conservation, biodiversity, and spatial ecology.

Marine Science is available as a first major or second major in the Bachelor of Science (BSc) and Bachelor of Science (Technology), or as a minor in other undergraduate degrees, subject to approval of the Division in which the student is enrolled.

To complete Marine Science as a single major for the BSc or BSc(Tech), students must gain 135 points including 105 points above 100 level, and 45 points above 200 level. Students must complete MARIN101, MARIN102, BIOEB202, EARTH241, ENVSC201, MARIN201, AQCUL302, BIOEB305 and EARTH341.

To complete Marine Science as a double major for the BSc or BSC(Tech), students must gain 120 points including 90 points above 100 level, and at least 30 points above 200 level. Students must complete MARIN101, MARIN102, MARIN201, and 75 points from BIOEB202, EARTH241, ENVSC201, ENVSC202, AQCUL302, BIOEB305, or EARTH341.

To complete a minor in Marine Science, students must complete 60 points from the papers listed for the Marine Science major, including at least 30 points above 100 level. Students must complete MARIN101, MARIN102 and 30 points from BIOEB202, EARTH241, MARIN201, AQCUL302, BIOEB305 or EARTH341.

100 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
MARIN101Marine Biodiversity - Rerenga Rauropi Taimoana15.024A (Tauranga)
This paper provides an introduction to marine ecosystems, the form and function of key marine taxa, the identification of New Zealand marine plants & animals (both indigenous & introduced), and the concepts of Matauranga and biodiversity, as they apply to the coastal marine environment. He whakataki no tenei pepa i te rauropi taimo...
MARIN102Marine Mammals, Birds and Apex Predators15.024B (Tauranga)
This paper provides an overview of marine charismatic megafauna and ecosystem processes including food webs, biogeochemical cycling, trophic cascades, and adaptations of organisms to their environment.

200 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
BIOEB202Principles of Ecology15.024B (Hamilton) & 24B (Tauranga)
This paper covers the principles of ecology, including adaptation to the environment, intra- and inter-specific interactions, community and ecosystem dynamics, and biogeography. Weekend field trips and computer laboratory work are essential elements.
EARTH241Oceanography15.024B (Hamilton) & 24B (Tauranga)
This paper introduces students to the broad scale properties, issues, and research importance of the global ocean via the main disciplines of oceanography: particularly biological, chemical, geological and physical oceanography
ENVSC201Environmental Monitoring15.024B (Hamilton) & 24B (Tauranga)
An introduction to reasons for, and design and implementation of, environmental monitoring in New Zealand. Skills in data collection, management, presentation, and interpretation are developed for a range of environments using both field data collection and published data-sets.

300 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
AQCUL302Research Tools for the Aquaculture Industry15.024B (Tauranga)
Research and development is essential to develop an efficient and sustainable aquaculture industry. This paper provides students with a knowledge and working experience of a number of modern laboratory techniques that help researchers understand the physiology of farmed organisms to inform and innovate husbandry practise. This has ...
BIOEB305Marine Ecology15.024B (Hamilton) & 24B (Tauranga)
An introduction to the structure and functioning of marine ecosystems. The paper explores the fundamentals of ecology (e.g. disturbance/recovery, recruitment, organism interactions with their environment, nutrient cycles, limits on productivity) in a marine setting. We also cover human impacts on marine environments including fishe...
EARTH341Coastal Oceanography15.024A (Hamilton) & 24A (Tauranga)
This paper focuses on the physical oceanography of the coastal zone. Topics include estuarine circulation, wind driven currents on the shelf, longwaves, resonance, seiching, methodologies for quantifying processes and coastal responses, waves and surfzone processes.

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School of Science
Phone: 0800 924 528 or +64 7 838 4625
Email: [email protected]