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  • Marine Sciences: Interdisciplinary Studies, CALS

    Oceans are an important facet of our global environment: covering more than 70% of the Earth’s surface, oceans provide us with food, transport, and resources, and they play a significant role in controlling climate. However, the world’s oceans remain largely unexplored below the surface, making them one of the last great frontiers for scientific discovery. Marine environments are inherently dynamic and governed by a broad suite of interactive biological, chemical, and physical processes.

    About this Major

    To graduate with this major, students must complete all university, college, and major requirements.


    Critical TrackingModel Semester Plan

    The university promotes an interdisciplinary approach to marine science education and research to prepare students for a variety of rewarding academic and professional careers. This major, offered cooperatively with the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, allows students to tailor a curriculum that suits their interests and career goals.

    The curriculum provides students with the core scientific and quantitative skills necessary for success. Lower-division courses build a strong foundation in basic sciences and math while upper-division courses provide opportunity for specialization. Students in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (CALS) complete an upper-division core that concentrates on biological and ecological marine science essentials while also giving students a critical understanding of how statistics and economics are integrated into marine science and resource management.

    Students work closely with a faculty advisor to create an individualized curriculum plan of at least 18 approved elective credits and 15-16 hours of planned credits. These can include courses on resource management, human dimensions, conservation, quantitative population assessment and others. Students must complete their plans along with the approval of a faculty advisor before reaching 70 credits.

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    Coursework for the Major

    The major requires 120 credits and at least 30 credits of upper-division coursework in the major must be completed at UF.

    Required Coursework

    • BSC 2010/2010L and BSC 2011/2011L Integrated Principles of Biology 1 and 2 and laboratories, 8 credits
    • CHM 2045/2045L and CHM 2046/2046L General Chemistry 1 and 2 and laboratories, 8 credits
    • FAS 4202C Biology of Fishes, 4 credits
    • FAS 4270 Marine Ecological Processes, 3 credits, or
      ZOO 4926 Marine Ecology, 3 credits
    • FAS 4932 Biology and Ecology of Algae, 3 credits
    • FNR 3410C Natural Resource Sampling, 3 credits, or
      STA 3024 Introduction to Statistics 2, 3 credits, or
      STA 4210 Regression Analysis, 3 credits, or
      STA 4222 Sample Survey Design, 3 credits
    • FNR 4660 Natural Resource Policy and Economics, 3 credits
    • GLY 3083C Fundamentals of Marine Sciences, 3 credits
    • MAC 2311 Analytic Geometry and Calculus 1, 4 credits
    • OCE 1001 Introduction to Oceanography, 3 credits
    • PHY 2004/2004L Applied Physics 1 and Laboratory, 4 credits
    • STA 2023 Introduction to Statistics 1, 3 credits
    • ZOO 4205C Invertebrate Biodiversity, 4 credits
    • 18 credits of approved marine sciences electives (see list below semester plan)
    • 15-16 credits of planned electives, sufficient to reach a total of 60 upper-division credits
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    Critical Tracking

    Critical Tracking records each student’s progress in courses that are required for entry to each major. Please note the critical-tracking requirements below on a per-semester basis.

    Equivalent critical-tracking courses as determined by the State of Florida Common Course Prerequisites may be used for transfer students.

    Semester 1

    • Complete OCE 1001 and 1 of the following, excluding labs: BSC 2010/2010L, BSC 2011/2011L, CHM 2045/2045L, CHM 2046/2046L, MAC 2311, PHY 2004/2004L
    • 2.5 GPA required for all critical-tracking courses
    • 2.0 UF GPA required

    Semester 2

    • Complete 2 additional critical-tracking courses, excluding labs
    • 2.5 GPA required for all critical-tracking courses
    • 2.0 UF GPA required

    Semester 3

    • Complete 1 additional critical-tracking course, excluding labs
    • 2.5 GPA required for all critical-tracking courses
    • 2.0 UF GPA required

    Semester 4

    • Complete 2 additional critical-tracking courses, excluding labs
    • 2.5 GPA required for all critical-tracking courses
    • 2.0 UF GPA required

    Semester 5

    • Complete all critical-tracking courses, including labs
    • 2.5 GPA required for all critical-tracking courses
    • 2.0 UF GPA required
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    Model Semester Plan

    Students are expected to complete the writing requirement while in the process of taking the courses below. Students are also expected to complete the general education international (GE-N) and diversity (GE-D) requirements concurrently with another general education requirement (typically, GE-C, H or S).

    To remain on track, students must complete the appropriate critical-tracking courses, which appear in bold. These courses must be completed by the terms as listed above in the Critical Tracking criteria.

    This semester plan represents an example progression through the major. Actual courses and course order may be different depending on the student's academic record and scheduling availability of courses. Prerequisites still apply.

    Semester 1 Credits
    CHM 2045 General Chemistry 1, 3 credits, and
    CHM 2045L General Chemistry 1 Laboratory, 1 credit
    State Core GE-B/P
    4
    IUF 1000 What is the Good Life
    GE-H
    3​
    OCE 1001 Introduction to Oceanography
    GE-B/P
    3
    Elective​ 3​
    Social and Behavioral Sciences
    State Core GE-S
    3
    Total 16
    Semester 2 Credits
    CHM 2046 General Chemistry 2, 3 credits, and
    CHM 2046L General Chemistry 2 Laboratory, 1 credit
    GE-B/P
    4
    MAC 2311 Analytic Geometry and Calculus 1
    State Core GE-M
    4
    Composition
    State Core GE-C; WR
    3
    Humanities
    State Core GE-H
    3
    Total 14
    Semester 3 Credits
    AEB 3103 Principles of Food and Resource Economics or
    ECO 2023 Principles of Microeconomics or
    ECO 2013 Principles of Macroeconomics (GE-S)​
    4​
    BSC 2010 Integrated Principles of Biology 1, 3 credits, and
    BSC 2010L Integrated Principles of Biology Laboratory 1, 1 credit
    GE-B/P
    4
    Composition
    GE-C; WR
    3
    Elective
    MAC 2312 Analytic Geometry and Calculus 2 recommended
    4
    Total 15
    Semester 4 Credits
    BSC 2011 Integrated Principles of Biology 2, 3 credits, and
    BSC 2011L Integrated Principles of Biology Laboratory 2, 1 credit
    GE-B/P
    4
    PHY 2004 Applied Physics 1, 3 credits, and
    PHY 2004L Laboratory for Applied Physics 1 Laboratory, 1 credit
    GE-B/P
    4
    STA 2023 Introduction to Statistics 1
    GE-M
    3
    Electives
    FAS 2024 Global and Regional Perspectives in Fisheries recommended
    4​
    Total 15
    Semester 5 Credits
    AEC 3030C Effective Oral Communication or
    SPC 2608 Public Speaking
    3
    FNR 3410C Natural Resource Sampling or
    STA 3024 Introduction to Statistics 2 or
    STA 4210 Regression Analysis or
    STA 4222 Sample Survey Design
    3
    Elective​ 3​
    Electives
    CHM 2200 Fundamentals of Organic Chemistry, 3 credits, and CHM 2200L Fundamentals of Organic Chemistry Laboratory, 1 credit, recommended
    4
    Total 13
    Semester 6 Credits
    FAS 4932 Biology and Ecology of Algae 3
    ​GLY 3083C Fundamentals of Marine Sciences
    GE-B/P
    ​3
    ZOO 4205C Invertebrate Biodiversity 4
    Approved electives 6
    Total 16
    Semester 7 Credits
    AEC 3033C Research and Business Writing in Agricultural and Life Sciences or
    ENC 2210 Technical Writing or
    ENC 3254 Professional Communication
    WR
    3
    FAS 4202C Biology of Fishes 4
    FAS 4270 Marine Ecological Processes or
    ZOO 4926 Marine Ecology
    3
    ​FNR 4660 Natural Resource Policy and Economics 3​
    ​Elective ​3
    Total 16
    Semester 8 Credits
    Approved electives 12
    ​Elective ​3
    Total 15
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    Approved Electives: 18 credits minimum

    Students meet with a faculty advisor to establish a curriculum plan for approved electives and planned electives and may focus these toward a specific area or a minor. For a broader program, students should choose a minimum of three credits from each area of approved electives. Other options may include study abroad courses.

    Ecology and Organismal Biology

    Courses Credits
    FAS 2024 Global and Regional Perspectives in Fisheries 3
    FAS 4305C Introduction to Fishery Science 3
    FAS 4305C Introduction to Fishery Science 3
    FAS 4932 Aquatic Invertebrate Ecological Physiology 3
    FAS 4932 Field Ecology of Aquatic Organisms 4
    FAS 4932 Coral Reef Ecology 3
    FAS 4932 Invasion Ecology of Aquatic Animals 3
    PCB 4043C General Ecology 4
    PCB 4674 Evolution 4
    VME 4012 Aquatic Animal Conservation Issues 3
    VME 4906 Introduction to Marine Wildlife 3
    WIS 3553C Introduction to Conservation Genetics 4
    WIS 4203C Landscape Ecology and Conservation 3
    ZOO 4403C Marine Biology 4

    Economics and Human Dimensions

    Courses Credits
    AEB 3450 Introduction to Natural Resource and Environmental Economics 3
    FOR 3202 Society and Natural Resources
    GE-S
    3
    GEO 4300 Environmental Biogeography 3
    SYD 4510 Environment and Society 3
    WIS 4523 Human Dimensions of Natural Resource Conservation 3

    Physical/Chemical Oceanography

    Courses Credits
    EGN 4932 Physical Oceanography 3
    GLY 3074 Oceans and Global Climate Change
    GE-P
    3
    GLY 4734 Coastal Morphology and Processes 3
    GLY 4930 Geochemical Oceanography 3
    OCE 3016 Introduction to Coastal and Oceanographic Engineering 3

    Professional Skills

    Courses Credits
    GIS 3072C Geographic Information Systems 3
    Advanced Open Water and Science Diving
    Practicum or Internship

    Quantitative Ecological Skills

    Courses Credits
    FAS 4932 Applied Fisheries Statistics 4
    FNR 3410C Natural Resource Sampling * 3
    STA 3024 Introduction to Statistics 2 * 3
    STA 4210 Regression Analysis * 3
    STA 4211 Design of Experiments 3
    STA 4222 Sample Survey Design * 3
    WIS 4501 Introduction to Wildlife Population Ecology 3
    WIS 4601C Quantitative Wildlife Ecology 3

    * Use as an approved elective if not used to meet the quantitative requirement in semester seven.

    Additional Approved Electives

    With instructor permission
    Courses Credits
    FAS 6337C Fish Population Dynamics 4
    GLY 6075 Global Climate Change 3
    OCP 6295 Estuarine and Shelf Hydrodynamics 1 3
    ZOO 6406 Biology of Sea Turtles 3
    ZOO 6456C Ichthyology 4
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    Related Marine Sciences Programs

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majors: marine-sciences