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By studying Aquaculture as a major at the University of Waikato’s Tauranga campus, you will be at the centre of New Zealand’s prime growth area for aquaculture.

Aquaculture is only available in Tauranga.


Aquaculture involves studying the underlying reproductive physiology and developmental biology of early life cycle strategies used by aquatic animal species. This knowledge is examined for its use in the husbandry, breeding and sustainable production of species in aquaculture.

As a University of Waikato aquaculture student, you will be able to understand and apply your knowledge of marine ecology, marine biosecurity and legislation relating to sustainable aquaculture. You will understand the key principles and practices in the aquaculture of fish, invertebrates, and algae.

You will also be able to identify opportunities, issues, and solutions relevant to the New Zealand aquaculture industry and “Blue Economy”, including the need to create diverse aquaculture projects that are both profitable and ecologically sustainable.


As an Aquaculture student at the University of Waikato in Tauranga, you will have access to the University's well-equipped laboratories – including the Coastal Marine Field Station and a dedicated facility for seaweed cultivation.

You'll be working alongside, and learning from, well-respected researchers, industry professionals and academics.

Build a successful career

Students with a major in Aquaculture tend to find employment in a range of primary industries (particularly marine and coastal-based activities), and future employers include the aquaculture and marine bioproduct industry, local and national government bodies (such as the Department of Conservation and Regional Councils) and Crown Research Institutes (such as NIWA, AgResearch and Plant & Food Research).

Apply to enrol

Key information

Study Location:Tauranga
Area of Study:

Study Aquaculture in these qualifications

Study Aquaculture as a specialisation of

Career opportunities

  • Science Technician
  • Research Assistant

100 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
AQCUL101Introduction to Aquaculture15.022A (Tauranga)
This paper will introduce marine aquaculture in a New Zealand context, with perspectives from historical Maori aquaculture and that of ancient foreign cultures.
MARIN101Marine Biodiversity15.022B (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.

200 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
AQCUL201Invertebrate and Algal Aquaculture15.022A (Tauranga)
This paper will introduce key taxa of invertebrates and algae used in aquaculture, focusing on the biology and physiology of their lifecycles, and common husbandry methods. Particular emphasis will be given to species of relevance to the NZ industry.
AQCUL202Fish Aquaculture15.022B (Tauranga)
This paper will introduce key fish species cultured around the world, with a focus on the biology and physiology of their lifecycle as well as common husbandry methods. Particular emphasis will be given to species of relevance to the New Zealand industry.
BIOEB203Animal Structure and Function15.022A (Hamilton) & 22A (Tauranga)
This paper is an integrated theoretical and experimental study of the principles of animal structure and function. Comparative aspects will be emphasised in how animals adapt to their environment. Topics covered include homeostasis, the function of major organ systems, ecophysiology, musculoskeletal design and locomotion. An introd...
EARTH241Oceanography15.022B (Hamilton) & 22B (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

300 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
AQCUL301Aquaculture Industry and Innovation15.022A (Tauranga)
This paper provides an overview of innovative blue biotechnologies that enhance marine aquaculture species target and product diversity as well as improving process efficiency, including environmental sustainability in a New Zealand context.
AQCUL302Research Tools for the Aquaculture Industry15.022B (Tauranga)
This paper will introduce modern research tools that give us a detailed understanding of the physiology of farmed fish/shellfish species and provide insight into how their husbandry can be improved.
EARTH341Coastal Oceanography15.022A (Hamilton) & 22A (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.

Scholarships and prizes

New to Waikato? The International Excellence Scholarship is worth up to $10,000.

Visit our Scholarship Finder for information about possible scholarships

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