Masters in Chemical Oceanography

Master of Science
Main Campus - Melbourne
Major Code: 8082 Degree Awarded: Master of Science
Age Restriction:  N Admission Status: graduate
Delivery Mode/s: classroom only Location/s: main campus
Admission Materials: 3 letters of recommendation, résumé, objectives, GRE

Program Chair
John G. Windsor Jr., Ph.D.

The master of science degree can be earned in one of five options: biological, chemical, geological or physical oceanography, or coastal zone management. The successful student is well prepared for a challenging professional career or for continuing with graduate studies.

Admission Requirements

General admission requirements and the process for applying are presented in the Academic Overview section.

Students may be admitted during any semester, but for optimal scheduling, the fall term is recommended. Students with deficiencies in their undergraduate preparation (up to 12 credit hours) may take deficiencies and courses for graduate credit concurrently. GRE General Test scores and a statement of objectives are required and should be sent to the Office of Graduate Admissions. Although not required for admission, an on-campus interview is highly recommended.

The applicant's undergraduate major should be in chemistry, mathematics, physical science or engineering. The academic background should include computer science, mathematics through calculus, and organic, physical and analytical chemistry.

Degree Requirements

The Master of Science in Oceanography - Chemical Oceanography is conferred on students who have successfully completed a minimum of 30 credit hours (including thesis) of required and elective coursework. The nonthesis track requires a minimum of 33 credit hours and a final program examination.


To earn the master of science degree, the student must complete the following courses or their equivalents. Equivalent coursework can be substituted for required courses as recommended by the student's advisor and program chair. Representative electives for each option are available from advisers. At least six credit hours of thesis or internship is required, and an additional three credit hours can be granted in place of the three credit hours of elective, subject to approval by the program chair. Thesis or internship registration must be continuous from the initial registration until graduation.

  • OCN 5101 Principles of Biological Oceanography
    Credit Hours: 3
    Includes biological aspects of the marine environment, physicochemical parameters and interrelationships between organisms and these parameters. Also discusses pollution and productivity.
  • OCN 5210 Marine and Environmental Chemistry
    Credit Hours: 3
    The chemical composition and important reactions along the global water cycle including rain, soil and groundwater, rivers, lakes, estuaries and seawater. Includes weathering, redox processes, carbonate equilibria and nutrients, and lab exercises.
  • OCN 5301 Principles of Geological Oceanography
    Credit Hours: 3
    Introduces the origin and evolution of the ocean basins. Reviews general biological, chemical and physical processes of the coastal and open ocean, emphasizing how they contribute to marine sedimentation and stratigraphy. Includes field trips.
  • OCN 5401 Principles of Physical Oceanography
    Credit Hours: 3
    Introduces physical oceanography including the properties of seawater, basic concepts of fluid dynamics, heat budget, atmospheric circulation, structure and circulation of the ocean, and tidal and wave motion.
  • OCN 5990 Oceanography Seminar
    (each semester)
    Credit Hours: 0
    Presents research and review of areas of interest by staff, students and invited speakers in the field of oceanography.
  • Elective Credit Hours: 3
  • Option Requirements Credit Hours: 15
Total Credits Required: 30
Option Courses (15 credit hours)
  • Electives Credit Hours: 9
  • Thesis Credit Hours: 6