The University of Newcastle, Australia
Available in 2019

Course handbook


Marine environments are among the most diverse ecosystems on Earth. This course provides a fundamental understanding of how oceans work, and the diversity of marine life that exists within the ocean environment. Physical oceanography topics include ocean circulation as well as; waves, tides, gases and sound. Students will also explore in depth biological diversity of the oceans from microbes to vertebrates. The laboratory and fieldwork component focuses on the identification, biology and diversity of Australia's unique marine organisms.

The course is delivered via a series of lectures and laboratory sessions. These encompass the use of molecular and morphological data to classify the major groups of marine organisms; and the physical characteristics of the ocean environment. Course assessment includes a written critical opinion of a current issue in marine biology; application of skills to identify marine organisms in a practical setting; and a written examination.

Availability2019 Course Timetables


  • Semester 1 - 2019

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Accurately identify a wide range of marine organisms

2. Describe the role of specific organisms in marine ecosystems

3. Safely apply practical skills in identifying common seaweeds, marine plants and marine animals

4. Critically apply the use of molecular and morphological data in phylogenetics

5. Critically explain current themes in marine biological research 5. describe current themes in marine biological research 5. describe current themes in marine biological research Describe current themes in marine biological research


1. The Ocean Environment

2. Marine Habitat Types

3. Life in the Oceans; Marine Life

  • Introduction to classification
  • Major groups of marine organisms

4. Ecology of Marine Life

5. Human Impact on the Marine Environment


Students must have successfully completed MARI1000 to enrol in this course.

Assumed knowledge

Either BIOL1040 and BIOL1070 or BIOL1001, BIOL1002 and BIOL1003

MARI1000 Issues in the Marine Environment

Assessment items

Essay: Essay

Formal Examination: Exam

Tutorial / Laboratory Exercises: Laboratory Exercises

Quiz: Quiz - Class

Compulsory Requirements

In order to pass this course, each student must complete ALL of the following compulsory requirements:

General Course Requirements:

  • Laboratory: Induction Requirement - Students must attend and pass the induction requirements before attending these sessions. - In order to participate in this course students must complete a compulsory safety induction.

Contact hours



Face to Face On Campus 3 hour(s) per Week for 12 Weeks


Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Week for 12 Weeks