Graduate Program

The BU Marine Program coordinates interdisciplinary opportunities for marine graduate research through the participating departments. Students can choose from either a Master of Arts (MA) or a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) program through the departments of Biology or Earth & Environment. There are different methods of graduate support in each department, most provided in the form of research assistantships and teaching fellowships. Prospective students are urged to contact the professor whose research most interests them directly. Participating faculty and their research expertise can be found here.

Consortium of Graduate Schools

Graduate students may cross-register for graduate courses at a select numbers of local Boston universities in consultation with their advisor and written program approval. Please consult with your department as to which universities participate. All procedures for cross-registration can be found in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Bulletin.

Graduate Courses:

CAS ES/BI 623 Marine Biogeochemistry. Prereq: CAS CH 101 and CAS CH 102, Marine Semester Semester or CAS ES 144, or consent of instructor. Oceanic nutrient and biogeochemical cycling in the context of the marine response to global change. Links between local and global scales are emphasized. Topics include oceanic productivity, iron limitation, and oceanic glacial-interglacial biogeochemistry. Fulweiler. 4 credits, Spring.

CAS ES/GE 507 Dynamical Oceanography. Prereq: CAS MA 124 or MA 127, and CAS PY 211. Introduction to the physical ocean system. Physical properties of seawater; essential ocean dynamics; mixing and stirring in the ocean; simple waves; observed current systems and water masses; and couple atmosphere-ocean variability. Anderson. 4 credits, Spring.

CAS BI 531 Ichthyology: Behavior, Ecology, and Evolution of Fish. Prereq: CAS BI 260. A comprehensive introduction to fish biology and systematics. Emphasis on phylogenetic relationships, ecology, and behavior. Labs include morphological studies of specimens and behavioral studies of live fish. Taught as part of the Marine Semester. Lobel. 4 credits, Fall.

CAS BI/ES 539 Coral Reef Dynamics. Prereq: admission to the Marine Semester. Tropical reefs- diverse, complex and ancient- exhibit lawful cycles of growth, degradation and regeneration. Explore these through observations on the Belize Barrier Reef, in fossil reef environments, and laboratory experiments. Apply insights to reef conservation. Taught as part of the Marine Semester. Kaufman. 4 credits, Fall.

CAS ES 543 Estauries and Nearshore Systems. Prereq: ES 331 or ES 440, or consent of instructor. Physical and and ecological processes interacting in estuarine and nearshore environments, including salt marshes, beaches, lagoons, deltas, and in wave- and tide-dominated regimes. Lectures complemented by extensive field work orientated toward individual and group research projects. Taught as part of the Marine Semester. Fagherazzi. 4 credits, Fall.

CAS BI 546 Marine Megafaunal Ecology: Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary and Surrounding Waters. Prereq: BI 260 and Statistics. Marine megafauna: whales, seals, seabirds, fishes, turtles, jellies an people in Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary. Evolution, food webs, and distributional ecology; physical and human influences on foraging and movement behavior. Student research builds ecosystem-based science for Sanctuary management. Taught as part of the Marine Semester. Biedron 4 credits, Fall.

CAS BI 550 Marine Genomics. Covers the evolution of genomes, the architecture of gene networks, and the connection between genotype and phenotype in marine organisms, as well as the technical development of modern genomics. Student research projects utilize modern genomics experimental approaches. Taught as part of the Marine Semester. Finnerty. 4 credits, Fall.

CAS BI 569 Tropical Marine Invertebrates. Explores the diversity of marine invertebrates in Belize, including body plans, feeding biology, reproductive strategies, and developmental programs. Field biodiversity and behavioral studies in shallow water tropical marine environments, especially seagrass beds and mangrove. Taught as part of the Marine Semester with a field component in Belize. Finnerty. 4 credits, Fall.

CAS GE/BI 578 Marine Geographic Information Science. Prereq: BI 260 and ES 144. MA 213 strongly recommended. Introduction to marine geographic information systems and spatial analysis for conservation management, and marine landscape ecology. Comparative examples from Gulf of Maine and the tropics. Solve problems in coastal zoning and marine park design, whale and coral reef conservation. Taught as part of the Marine Semester. Wikgren. 4 credits, Fall.