Bachelor of Marine Science
ATAR 73.3 | Assumed knowledge: English (Units 3/4,C), Mathematical Methods (Units 3/4,C), Chemistry (Units 3/4,C).
What to expect
How to apply
Study in JCU's advanced research aquariums and laboratories. Learn how to manage human impacts and preserve dynamic marine environments. Undertake research at the JCU Orpheus Island Research Station, or on-site at various coral reef, island, seagrass and mangrove environments visited when completing this degree.
Develop high-level skills in evolving technologies that are providing solutions to previously unsolvable problems. Build your capabilities in the use of seabed mapping and fish assessment sonar, oceanographic sensors, and a range of technology used for gathering data above and below the waves.
Build networks with the international cohort who study this degree, and with the concentration of marine scientists and managers located in north Queensland. Opportunities may also exist to undertake an exchange program with an international university.
About JCU's Bachelor of Marine Science
Pursue your passion for the ocean and marine life at the best marine biology university in the world*. James Cook University’s Bachelor of Marine Science degree is a comprehensive course studying the elements of the ocean with a strong focus on first-hand experiences. Access diverse learning environments including the Daintree Rainforest and Orpheus Island on the Great Barrier Reef.
A Marine Biology School with World-Class Teaching and Learning
JCU offers a world-class education in Marine Science. Explore the oceans like never before with our cutting-edge technology, including sensors and radar.
JCU’s marine science degree has a focus on the sustainability of the oceans and is ideal for students interested in physical, chemical and geographical ocean science. This specialist marine biology degree suits those interested in studying the flora and fauna of the oceans.
The challenges facing our oceans require bold minds and creative solutions. Marine science students are trained to work with developing technologies. Gain hands-on experience using seabed mapping technology, tagging and tracking equipment and high-precision sensors to track activity in the ocean.
Study Marine Biology in the Most Beautiful Locations on Earth
Take advantage of JCU’s real-world practical experience. Study your marine biology bachelor degree on-site at coral reefs, islands, mangroves, and seagrass beds including the Great Barrier Reef National Park. Access JCU’s research vessels and the JCU Orpheus Island Research Station and Aquarium Complex.
Learn from lecturers who are experts in their field and are passionate about addressing the challenges of our seas. Together with industry professionals, you will research solutions for the future and be part of a team solving problems that have eluded scientists for decades.
Understand how to collect data, map the seabeds, assess the health of marine life populations, look for underwater deposits, and monitor and track everything under the waves. Your research will take you to coral reefs, research ships and seagrass beds.
A Marine Biology University with Great Learning Resources
Master the fundamentals, such as understanding biological processes, the chemistry of the ocean, marine geography and fisheries science. Then, start planning field investigations and learn how to collect and analyse the data you find. Access the newest technologies and the most cutting-edge techniques to collate the data you need.
Learn how to draw logical conclusions from what you know and devise workable solutions to problems. Gain the skills to understand how the intricate ocean systems work together so you can manage them effectively. You will also master practical skills in working safely in diverse marine environments.
Marine Science at JCU - The Way to a Healthier Future for Our Oceans
JCU’s bachelor program in marine science offers students hands-on opportunities and invaluable experience that will help them succeed in the workforce.
Hide additional information
View the handbook for a detailed overview of core subjects and available options.
*Excellence in Research Awards 2018-2019.
High achieving Bachelor of Marine Science students can continue their studies through the Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree. This course consists of extra study and the development of a personal research project and thesis. An Honours degree is usually essential for entry to research higher degrees. Refer to the Bachelor of Science (Honours) Handbook for eligibility information.
The JCU Marine Science degree is one of the most respected courses of its kind in the world^.
Graduates can pursue a career in a diverse range of areas including fisheries science and management, marine resource management and conservation, coastal and marine geoscience, oceanography, and marine technology.
JCU Marine Science graduates find employment with both Government and private industry, in Australia and overseas. They fill positions such as marine conservation officer, marine planner, marine biologist, marine scientists for consulting engineering companies, oceanographer, aquatic veterinarian, fisheries manager, marine education and communication, and environmental manager.
^JCU Marine and Fresh Water Biology is ranked number 1 in the world by the Centre for World University Rankings.
Note the course QTAC code for the location you've chosen. You'll need to enter it as part of your QTAC application.
OP Score/Rank is indicative only. Entry scores will be finalised in the major offer round.
Fees and scholarships
Pathways to JCU
Bachelor of Marine Science
Bachelor Degree (AQF Level 7)
Tropical Environments and Societies
Assumed Knowledge: English (4,SA); Maths B (4,SA); Chemistry (4,SA)
Recommended Study: At least one of Biology, Earth Science, Geography, Maths C or Physics
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.
|Additional course requirements|
Applicants who have not completed high school intermediate level Mathematics B (or equivalent) must select MA1020: Preparatory Mathematics as part of their study plan to successfully complete the Bachelor of Marine Science.
Applicants who have not completed high school Chemistry (or equivalent) must select CH1020: Preparatory Chemistry as part of their study plan to successfully complete the Bachelor of Marine Science.
Students should undertake the above subject/s in intensive mode where available and be aware that restrictions may apply to electives if they wish to complete in the normal three (3) year time frame. These subjects typically start earlier than the standard course commencement date. Contact JCU on 1800 246 446 for more information.
This course involves mandatory field work and any costs associated with that field work will be at the student’s expense.
Academic Requirements for Course Completion
72 credit points as per course structure
Additional course rules
Must complete a minimum of 18 credit points of Level 3 subjects.
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:
BS1007:03 Introduction to Biodiversity
CH1001:03 Chemistry: A Central Science
EA1110:03 Evolution of the Earth
MA1000:03 Mathematical Foundations
MB1110:03 Introductory Marine Science
EV2502:03 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
PH2006:03 Marine Physics
CH2042:03 Marine Chemistry and Chemical Ecology
MB2050:03 Functional Biology of Marine Organisms
MB3050:03 Biological Oceanography
EV3406:03 Coral Reef Geomorphology
EA3110:03 Sedimentology and Stratigraphy
EA3640:03 Advanced Environmental and Marine Geoscience Technologies and Applications
MB3270:03 Coastal, Estuarine and Mangrove Ecosystems
SC3010:03 Sensors and Sensing for Scientists
SC3232:03 Marine Sensor Technologies and Applications
Applicants who have not completed high school intermediate level Mathematics B (or equivalent) must select MA1020 Preparatory Mathematics as part of their study plan to successfully complete the Bachelor of Marine Science.
MA1020:03 Preparatory Mathematics or any Level 1, 2 or 3 of AQ, BC, BM, BS, BZ, CH, CL, CP, CS, EA, EE, EV, MA, MB, ME, MI, PH or SC subjects
Applicants who have not completed high school Chemistry (or equivalent) must select CH1020 Preparatory Chemistry as part of their study plan to successfully complete the Bachelor of Marine Science
CH1020:03 Preparatory Chemistry or any Level 1, 2 or 3 of AQ, BC, BM, BS, BZ, CH, CL, CP, CS, EA, EE, EV, MA, MB, ME, MI, PH or SC subjects
Select 12 credit points of subjects from List 1 or a Minor from Table A or an Inter-disciplinary Minor
Note: Streams listed below are for guidance only
- Earth Science
- Environmental Science
- Marine Biology
CH1002:03 Chemistry: Principles and Applications
CH2310:03 Syntheses and Mechanism in Organic Chemistry
CH2103:03 Analytical Chemistry
CH3041:03 Environmental Chemistry
EA2404:03 From Icehouse to Greenhouse
EA2900:03 Introductory Field Geology
EA3800:03 Earth and Environmental Geochemistry
Select 4 subjects from:
EV1005:03 Environmental Processes & Global Change
EV2401:03 Australian Landscape Processes and Evolution
EV3401:03 Coastal and Catchment Geomorphology
EV3502:03 Advanced Geographic Information Systems
EV3506:03 Remote Sensing
BS2460:03 Fundamentals of Ecology
MB2080:03 Invertebrate Biology
MB3014:03 Managing Tropical Fisheries
MB3150:03 Fisheries Science
Select 4 subjects from:
BS2460:03 Fundamentals of Ecology
MB2070:03 Marine Biogeography
MB2080:03 Invertebrate Biology
MB3160:03 Evolution and Ecology of Reef Fishes
MB3190:03 Coral Reef Ecology
MB3260:03 Ecological Dynamics: An Introduction to Modelling
MA1003:03 Mathematical Techniques
Plus select 3 subjects from:
MA2000:03 Mathematics for Scientists and Engineers
MA2210:03 Linear Algebra
MA2405:03 Advanced Statistical Modelling
CP2404:03 Database Modelling
MA3405:03 Statistical Data Mining for Big Data
PH1005:03 Advanced Stream Physics 1
PH3006:03 Oceanography and Meteorology
Plus select 2 subjects from:
PH2002:03 Classical Mechanics and Quantum Physics 1
PH2019:03 Introduction to Electromagnetism Optics and Early Quantum
PH2240:03 Atomic and Nuclear Physics
TABLE A (SCIENCE MINORS)
Type of Minor
Credit points in minor
12 credit points
COURSE AVAILABLE AT
Expected time to complete
3 years full-time or equivalent part-time
Maximum time to complete
Maximum leave of absence
Course progression requisites
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)
Course includes mandatory fieldwork
Special assessment requirements
Maximum allowed Pass Conceded (PC) grade
Supplementary exam for final subject
Students may apply for a credit transfer for previous tertiary study or informal and non-formal learning in accordance with the Credit Transfer Procedure.
48 credit points
Credit will be granted only for studies completed in the 10 years prior to the commencement of this course.
Credit gained for any subject shall be cancelled 19 years after the date of the examination upon which the credit is based if, by then, the student has not completed this course.
A maximum of 6 credit points of credit may be granted at level 3.
Credit will not be granted for CH1020, MA1020 or PH1001.
BACHELOR OF MARINE SCIENCE
Inclusion of majors on testamur
Not applicable - this course does not have majors
Exit with lesser award
Students who have completed 24 credit points of their course award requirements, and withdraw from or fail to meet the requirements for progression in the later years, may be eligible for the award of Diploma of Tertiary Studies.
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.
Annual Tuition Fee: $9,527. (Estimate only)
An OP or ATAR is the score required for entry into most undergraduate courses. If you are not a Year 12 school leaver or do not have an OP or ATAR, you can be assigned an equivalent rank score. Ranks are calculated from previous study that you might have completed, either secondary, tertiary or vocational, or previous paid employment experience.
JCU offers pathway courses to help you move into a degree. Pathway courses provide you with an individualised study plan and specialised support as you transition to university.
Contact us to find about more.