To be read in conjunction with the program of study requirements for the Bachelor of Science (Honours) Enhanced Program for High Achievers.

The Marine Biology Specialisation is offered as part of the Bachelor of Science (Honours) Enhanced Program for High Achievers and requires four years of full-time study (or the equivalent part-time). The Specialisation is offered by the School of Biological Sciences, within the Faculty of Science and Engineering.

This course is designed to offer students of exceptional merit additional challenging material to enable them to maximise their intellectual growth and potential and to provide an environment where students with similar interests and capabilities can come together to pursue their studies, develop their interests and share ideas.

In addition, it aims to develop through a combination of inquiry based learning and students' capabilities, interest and enthusiasm, an enhanced research training experience so that students are particularly well prepared to embark on a larger scale resear   h project, like a PhD.

Specialisations may have different admission requirements to other programs of study available in the Bachelor of Science (Honours) Enhanced Program for High Achievers. In order to undertake a Specialisation students must be admitted to the Specialisation program. The name of the specialisation will appear on the transcript and parchment.

Admission requirements

The minimum requirements for consideration for entry to all undergraduate courses are specified in detail in the University Entry Requirements. Successful completion of at least three of the following SACE Stage 2 (Year 12) subjects; Biology, Mathematical Studies, Specialist Mathematics, Chemistry, Physics, Geology, or the equivalent are normally required for entry to the Bachelor of Science (Honours) (Marine Biology) Enhanced Program for High Achievers. Knowledge of Mathematics and/or Physics to SACE Year 11 level is desirable

Students will only be permitted to tertiary transfer on the commencement of second year.

Course aims

The specialisation aims to provide students with a broad understanding of the biology of marine organisms, their relationships with the physico-chemical marine environment, and their potential responses to changes. It also provides students with the ability to acquire extensive subject knowledge in marine biodiversity, ecology, genetics, conservation, fisheries and related areas.  It builds several transferable skills for research, analysis and communication including the capability to:

  • understand and apply scientific principles in a marine biology context
  • retrieve and present scientific information about marine biology, including communicating
  • effectively with a variety of  audiences in written and spoken form
  • critically analyse and evaluate information relevant to marine biology and solve problems
  • appreciate the multidisciplinary aspect of marine sciences and engage positively with people and ideas beyond their discipline area
  • work effectively and productively within teams
  • work independently and take responsibility for updating and adapting their knowledge and skills
  • appreciate the ethical and societal contexts of marine sciences

The Honours year provides students with advanced skills that are required for planning, funding and carrying out research projects in a specific area. It also aims to develop a range of transferable research, analytical and communication skills including the capacity to:

  • understand and apply relevant scientific principles
  • retrieve and present scientific information, including communicating effectively with a variety of audiences in written and spoken form
  • critically analyse and evaluate information and solve problems
  • analyse and evaluate data, appreciate the multidisciplinary aspect of the science disciplines and engage positively with people and ideas beyond their own discipline area
  • use information technology, work independently and take responsibility for updating and adapting their knowledge and skills
  • appreciate the role of science in society, the regulatory framework within which it operates and the ethical issues it raises.

This course provides the broad-based foundation that will support ongoing professional development, preparing graduates for further study in marine sciences or for a career in marine biology or related area where the range of skills and knowledge acquired is needed or desirable.

Learning outcomes

Graduates are expected to be able to:

  • be familiar with theories, subject content, professional methodologies, ethical frameworks and research procedures in marine sciences and be able to critically apply them in marine biological studies
  • understand and be able to describe the processes through which current knowledge about marine biology and  its related disciplines were developed
    be capable of analysing and critically evaluating ideas/information/data in marine biology, and applying relevant scientific principles to solve problems by, for example, creating hypotheses, testing theories and predictions, designing and carrying out experiments and analysing reported data
  • be competent at designing marine biological  studies, employing sampling methods and techniques that work effectively in the field and laboratory, and applying numerical skills for data analysis
  • have an appreciation of work practices relating to OH&S and animal ethics in regards to marine biological studies
  • be skilled at identifying organisms found in marine and costal environments
  • understand the dynamics of marine ecosystems and their potential responses to changes
  • be capable of applying conservation and management principles for marine conservation and sustainable use of marine resources
  • be able to communicate their findings to a variety of audiences in written and spoken form
  • appreciate that marine biology is multidisciplinary and has connections to other science and non-science disciplines
  • work and learn independently and appreciate the need for continuing professional development
  • interact effectively as part of a team in order to achieve common goals

Graduates of the Honours year are expected to be able to:

  • critically analyse the scientific literature and use this as a basis for planning research projects
  • understand how scientific research is funded
  • formulate hypothesises and design appropriate experiments to test them
  • use appropriate methods, techniques, equipment and instrumentation to ethically collect scientific data
  • use appropriate statistical methods to analyse scientific data
    communicate their findings to a variety of audiences in written and spoken form.

Program of Study

To qualify for the Bachelor of Science (Honours) (Marine Biology) Enhanced Program for High Achievers, a student must complete 144 units with a grade of P or NGP or better in each topic according to the program of study below.

Upon completion of 108 units students will be informed about whether they have been accepted into the Honours year. The entry requirement is normally a Grade Point Average (GPA) of 5.0 or more in the final 36 units of study prior to the Honours year. Students who are not accepted into the Honours year will be awarded the Bachelor of Science (Marine Biology).

It is possible to elect to exit after three years of full-time equivalent study with a Bachelor of Science (Marine Biology).

No more than 45 units of First Year level topics may be included in the 144 units for the degree.
Elective topics may be selected from any offered within the University or, with approval from the Faculty of Science and Engineering, from outside the University, provided any course and prerequisite requirements are met.

Except with the permission of Faculty Board, students may not enrol in a topic in Fourth Year until they have passed 108 units.

Not all topics are necessarily available in a given year.

Specialisation - Marine Biology - Year 1 topics

36 units comprising:

 BIOL1101  Evolution of Biological Diversity  (4.5 units)
 BIOL1102  Molecular Basis of Life  (4.5 units)
 BIOL1301  Introduction to Marine Biology#  (4.5 units)
 EASC1102  Marine Sciences#  (4.5 units)
 SERC1012  Introduction to Research  (4.5 units)

Plus 4.5 units of elective topics^ from across the University where entry requirements are met.

Plus one of:

 CHEM1101  Chemical Structure and Bonding  (4.5 units)
 CHEM1201  General Chemistry  (4.5 units)

Plus:

 CHEM1202  Chemistry for the Life Sciences  (4.5 units)

Specialisation - Marine Biology - Year 2 topics

36 units comprising:

 BIOL2701  Experimental Design and Statistics for Biology  (4.5 units)
 BIOL2702  Genetics, Evolution and Biodiversity  (4.5 units)
 BIOL2711  Ecology  (4.5 units)
 BIOL2712  Animal Diversity  (4.5 units)
 BIOL2742  Marine Ecology  (4.5 units)
 EASC2701  Coasts and Oceans  (4.5 units)
 SERC2700  Research Project 1  (4.5 units)

Plus 4.5 units of elective topics^ from across the University where entry requirements are met.

Specialisation - Marine Biology - Year 3 topics

36 units comprising:

 BIOL3700  Biology Research Project  (4.5 units)
 BIOL3701  Conservation Biology and Restoration Ecology  (4.5 units)
 BIOL3702  Marine and Freshwater Biology  (4.5 units)
 BIOL3711  Plant and Algal Diversity  (4.5 units)
 BIOL3751  Marine Mammals, Birds and Reptiles  (4.5 units)
 BIOL3752  Fisheries Biology, Science and Management  (4.5 units)
 SERC3700  Research Project 2  (4.5 units)

Plus 4.5 units of elective topics^ from across the University where entry requirements are met.

Specialisation - Marine Biology - Honours Year topics

36 units comprising:

  BIOL7700A  Biology Honours Research Project  (4.5/22.5 units)  
  BIOL7700B  Biology Honours Research Project  (4.5/22.5 units)  
  BIOL7700C  Biology Honours Research Project  (4.5/22.5 units)  
  BIOL7700D  Biology Honours Research Project  (4.5/22.5 units)  
  BIOL7700E  Biology Honours Research Project  (4.5/22.5 units)  
  BIOL7710  Honours Critical Readings  (4.5 units)
  BIOL7720  Honours Grant Writing Skills  (4.5 units)
  BIOL7730  Honours Scientific Methods and Data Presentation  (4.5 units)

 or other topics approved by The Honours Committee, appropriate to a student's program.

#These topics are cognate studies topics which must be taken to complete the specialisation.

^Specialisation - Marine Biology - Recommended Electives

While students are able to select elective units from anywhere across the University, these are Recommended Electives.

 BIOL1102  Introduction to Biodiversity and Conservation  (4.5 units)
 BIOL1112  Biology and Society  (4.5 units)
 BIOL1201  Introduction to Aquaculture  (4.5 units)
 BIOL1711  Introduction to Animal Behaviour  (4.5 units)
 BIOL2721  Foundations of Animal Behaviour  (4.5 units)
 BIOL2731  Aquaculture Nutrition and Water Quality  (4.5 units)
 BIOL2732  Aquaculture Systems and Technology  (4.5 units)
 BIOL2761  Virology  (4.5 units)
 BIOL2771  Biochemistry  (4.5 units)
 GEOG2700  Geographical Information Systems  (4.5 units)
 BIOL3712  Integrative Physiology of Animals and Plants  (4.5 units)
 BIOL3721  Research in Animal Behaviour  (4.5 units)
 BIOL3722  Conservation and Ecological Genetics  (4.5 units)
 BIOL3731  Aquaculture Reproduction  (4.5 units)
 BIOL3732  Aquaculture Health and Product Quality  (4.5 units)
 ENVS3711  Coastal Studies  (4.5 units)

Combined degrees

The Bachelor of Science (Honours) (Marine Biology) may also be studied in a combined degrees program with any Bachelor degree in the Faculty of Science and Engineering.