Bachelor of Marine Science

Bachelor of Marine Science

Course code


Course type

Bachelor Degree (AQF Level 7)


Tropical Environments and Societies

Award Requirements

Admission Requirements

Course pre-requisites

English, Chemistry, Maths B

Minimum English language proficiency requirements

Applicants of non-English speaking backgrounds must meet the English language proficiency requirements of Band 1 Schedule II of the JCU Admissions Policy.

Academic Requirements for Course Completion

Credit points

72 credit points as per course structure

Additional course rules

A maximum of 30 credit points may be taken at level 1

Course learning outcomes

The graduates of James Cook University are prepared and equipped to create a brighter future for life in the tropics world-wide.

JCU graduates are committed to lifelong learning, intellectual development, and to the display of exemplary personal, professional and ethical standards. They have a sense of their place in the tropics and are charged with professional, community, and environmental responsibility.  JCU graduates appreciate the need to embrace and be acquainted with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples of Australia. They are committed to reconciliation, diversity and sustainability. They exhibit a willingness to lead and to contribute to the intellectual, environmental, cultural, economic and social challenges of regional, national, and international communities of the tropics.

Graduates of the Bachelor of Marine Science at James Cook University will be able to:

  • Integrate and apply a coherent body of theoretical and technical knowledge of the marine environment and sustainable management of marine and coastal resources, with depth in the underlying concepts and principles in at least two science disciplines

  • Critically appraise the role and relevance of marine sciences in the creation of sustainable futures, particularly in the tropics, worldwide

  • Demonstrate broad understanding of the methods of science, particularly as applied to marine sciences, including the creative processes involved in developing scientific knowledge and its contestable and testable nature

  • Retrieve, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information from a range of sources

  • Plan and conduct reliable, evidence-based laboratory and/or field investigations, by selecting and applying appropriate methods, techniques and tools

  • Organise, analyse and interpret scientific data using mathematical, statistical and/or technological skills

  • Convey scientific ideas, arguments and conclusions clearly and coherently through well-developed written and oral communication skills and a variety of media

  • Identify, analyse and generate solutions to unpredictable or complex problems relating to the behaviour and management of marine systems by applying knowledge and skills with initiative and well-developed judgement

  • Critically review regulatory requirements, ethical principles and, where appropriate, cultural frameworks, to work effectively, responsibly and safely in diverse contexts and interdisciplinary or multidisciplinary teams

  • Reflect on current skills, knowledge and attitudes to manage their professional learning needs and performance, autonomously and in collaboration with others.

Course Structure


Level 1

BZ1001:03 Fundamentals of Biological Processes

BZ1007:03 Introduction to Biodiversity

CH1001:03 Chemistry: A Central Science

EV1005:03 Environmental Processes and Global Change

MA1401:03 Statistics and Data Analysis 1 or MA1000:03 Mathematical Foundations

MB1110:03 Introductory Marine Science

Level 2

BZ2001:03 Quantitative Methods in Science

EV2502:03 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems

PH2006:03 Descriptive Physical Oceanography


Select 6 credit points of specified level 1 subjects from List 1


Select 9 credit points of Science level 2 subjects


Select 6 credit points of specified level 2 subjects from List 2


Select 9 credit points of specified EA or EV level 3 subjects from List 3


Select 9 credit points of specified MB level 3 subjects from List 4


Select 6 credit points of specified CS, MA, MB, PH level 3 subjects from List 5 or select 6 credit points of any AQ, BZ, CH, EA, EV, MA, MB or PH level 3 subjects

List 1

BZ1008:03 Functional Ecology

CH1002:03 Chemistry: Principles and Applications

EA1110:03 Evolution of the Earth

MA1000:03 Mathematical Foundations

MA1003:03 Mathematical Techniques

PH1001:03 Preparatory Physics

PH1005:03 Advanced Stream Physics 1

PH1007:03 Advanced Stream Physics 2

SC1101:03 Science: Nature, Knowledge and Understanding

SC1102:03 Modelling Natural Systems

List 2

CH2042:03 Marine Chemistry and Chemical Ecology

EA2110:03 Introduction to Sedimentology

MB2050:03 Functional Biology of Marine Organisms

MB2060:03 Marine Ecology and Environmental Assessment

List 3

EA3640:03 Advanced Environmental and Marine Geoscience Technologies and Applications

EV3201:03 Managing Coastal and Marine Environments

EV3203:03 Conserving Marine Wildlife: Sea Mammals, Birds, Reptiles

EV3401:03 Coastal and Catchment Geomorphology

EV3406:03 Coral Reef Geomorphology

List 4

MB3050:03 Biological Oceanography

MB3150:03 Fisheries Science

MB3190:03 Coral Reef Ecology

MB3200:03 Marine Conservation Biology

MB3210:03 Life History and Evolution of Reef Corals

MB3260:03 Ecological Dynamics: An Introduction to Modelling

MB3270:03 Wetlands and Estuarine Ecosystems

List 5

CS3008:03 Fluid Mechanics

MA3109:03 Applied Complex Variable Theory

PH3006:03 Oceanography and Meteorology

PH3019:03 Electromagnetic Phenomena







Expected time to complete

3 years full-time or equivalent part-time

Maximum time to complete

10 years

Maximum leave of absence

3 years


Course progression requisites

Must complete 12 credit points of level 1 science subjects before attempting any level 2 science subjects.

Must complete 18 credit points of level 1 and 2 science subjects before attempting any level 3 science subjects.

Course includes mandatory professional placement(s)


Special assessment requirements


Accreditation requirements


Maximum allowed Pass Conceded (PC) grade


Supplementary exam for final subject

Not applicable

Advanced Standing


Students may apply for advanced standing for previous tertiary study in accordance with the Advanced Standing and Articulation policy and associated procedures.

Maximum allowed

48 credit points


Advanced standing will be granted only for studies completed in the 10 years prior to the commencement of this course.


Advanced standing gained for any subject shall be cancelled 20 years after the date of the examination upon which the advanced standing is based if, by then, the student has not completed this course.

Other restrictions

A maximum of 6 credit points of advanced standing may be granted at level 3.

Award Details

Award title


Approved abbreviation


Inclusion of majors on testamur

Not applicable - this course does not have majors

Exit with lesser award

Not applicable

Course articulation

Not applicable


Honours availability

Honours is available as a separate graduate entry course.


Students must satisfy the college requirements relating to the standard of academic achievement necessary to proceed to the honours degree.