17 Best Marine Biology Schools in the World - Global Scholarships (2023)

Marine Biology is the study of marine organisms and creatures depending on bodies of water, including their behaviors and interactions with the environment. Marine biology science is a vast discipline with various specializations; hence, university researchers focus on a particular aspect of the study. The reliance and adherence of world societies to our world’s oceans emphasize the importance of marine biology study.

Many universities worldwide have focused on the science of marine biology throughout the years. Some have developed the discipline in their institutions above other schools, seen from their impact on the global marine biology community and received recognitions. Here are some of the best marine biology schools in the world.

Top Marine Biology Schools in the World

1. James Cook University

The University College of Townsville, James Cook University’s former name, was proposed in 1957 and officially opened in 1961. The university got its new name through a Queensland Parliament bill in 1969. Since its conception in the 1950s, JCU has continued the pursuit of scientific excellence, particularly in marine biology.

James Cook University’s College of Science and Engineering houses the marine biology program for undergraduate and graduate tracks. CSE focuses on the education and application of areas, including marine biology, as part of the Division for Tropical Environments and Societies. The college utilizes a hands-on learning and research approach to ensure quality outputs.

Since the CSE and JCU focused on advancing the disciplines within and around marine biology, it is no surprise that its prestige went above par. It has received multiple awards and honors for the excellence of its research and graduates. It’s no surprise that JCU is among the best marine biology schools and is currently at the top spot among international institutions offering marine biology.

2. Ocean University of China

The Ocean University of China established itself as the Private Qingdao University in 1924. Qingdao was later nationalized in 1930 and renamed the National Shandong University. A merger and several names change later, the Ministry of Education changed its name to the Ocean University of China in 2002. The institution prides itself in attaining excellence in the fisheries and marine sciences field.

The Ocean University of China’s College of Marine Sciences started with the foundation of the OUC itself. The CMS embodies the OUC’s focus on studying and researching the ocean sciences. The Ocean University of China is one of the top institutes for marine biology, with full support from the Chinese government.

3. University of Queensland

A 1909 State Parliament Act established the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. The university was founded officially in 1910, and teaching started the following year. UQ rapidly expanded after World War I, developing its fields and disciplines decades forward.

The University of Queensland’s Centre for Marine Science is the leading research and training institution for the marine science discipline. The center is one of the largest and most diverse collaborations of marine experts in Australia.

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Through the efforts of its faculty, researchers, and students, the Centre for Marine Science’s record in developing and promoting knowledge, approaches, and technologies is unparalleled. The University of Queensland consistently ranks as one of the best among marine science universities worldwide.

4. University of Tasmania

The University of Tasmania started in 1890 and is Australia’s fourth oldest university. The university promotes a philosophy of symbiosis between the environment and the academic and research community. The relationship revolves around environmental study and preservation for the benefit of both sides.

The Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies is the University of Tasmania’s premier institution for promoting the discipline. The institute prides itself as a world-class center of excellence for research and education. Various global ranking organizations have already cited the University of Tasmania for its high quality of trained scientists and researchers, placing it in the upper bracket of marine science universities globally.

5. Aarhus University

Aarhus University in Denmark started in 1928 upon the inauguration of the University Studies in Jutland. The university eventually gained recognition as Aarhus University in 1933 through the help and support of the government and the Aarhus community.

Aarhus University’s Department of Ecoscience started in 1989 as the National Environmental Research Institute. NERI became part of Aarhus University then became the Department of Ecoscience. The series of name changes characterize the ever-changing strategies of the department to adapt to the challenges and demands of marine science.

The Department of Ecoscience in this esteemed marine biology institution is recognized in Denmark and around the world as today’s leading institution for the study and research of marine science. Its produced experts and researchers are well-recognized in the field. Aarhus University occupies the top ranks of international marine science institutions worldwide.

6. Sorbonne University

Sorbonne University is yet another one of the best marine biology schools in the world. It started in 2018 as a public university created by the merger of Paris-Sorbonne University and Pierre and Marie Curie University. The Sorbonne University’s structure focuses on the three faculties of arts and humanities, science and engineering, and medicine.

The Sorbonne University’s Faculty of Science and Engineering houses the institution’s marine science program. On its own, Pierre and Marie Curie University already rank among the best marine science universities in the world. The merger made significant leaps forward in marine science for the resulting institution.

The Faculty of Science and Engineering relies on its research teams and experts to formulate its policies. This approach ensures consistent innovation and relevant excellence within the community. The faculty’s success is visible through the number of well-trained marine scientists from Sorbonne University, excelling in the discipline internationally.

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7. University of Porto

The newly implanted Portuguese republican system created the University of Porto in 1911. Despite the challenge brought about by political unrest in Portugal, the university continues to thrive up to this day. Various disciplines gained ground and developed their research and teaching techniques in their respective departments.

The Faculty of Sciences or the Faculdade de Ciencias Universidade do Porto, traces its history to 1762 when the Nautical Class began. The university’s administration introduced developments and changes to the faculty. The improvements molded the Faculty of Sciences into the world-class department it is today.

The Faculty of Sciences provides various research and training facilities to improve the study of marine sciences. The quality of research and experts produced by the FCUP is comparable to larger schools worldwide. The University of Porto is among the upper brackets of international marine science universities.

8. Newcastle University

Already reputed as one of the best marine biology universities in the world, Newcastle University also prides itself on being the 1st in the United Kingdom for sustainable development in the Times Higher Education 2022.

Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology is recognized by the Institute of Marine Engineering, Science and Technology (IMarEST) due to its comprehensive curriculum for marine scientists. Situated along the coastline and the North Sea, Marine Biology students are guaranteed an immersive research study. Furthermore, educational field tours at the Isle of Cumbrae and selected spots in Portugal, Mexico, or Bermuda can be experienced by students.

9. University of Maine

The University of Maine’s School of Marine Sciences prides itself on being one of the university’s centers of excellence. Aside from that, there are also other 15 departments that are dubbed “Signature and Emerging Areas of Excellence”.

Undergraduate students specializing in Marine Biology must take 15 credits from the electives of the School of Marine Sciences. This should include courses on primary producers, vertebrate and invertebrate organisms. Graduate students will take on a range of related disciplines from comparative morphology, genetics, and physiology to cellular and molecular biology. All students of Marine Biology will benefit from renowned and experienced faculty members.

10. University of Miami

The University of Miami embraces all kinds of students and teaching staff, making up a diverse student body and valuable teaching personnel. This ideal is supported by the university’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee and the Multicultural Student Affairs.

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Marine Biology & Ecology bachelor’s degree is intended for students who are aiming for a holistic research experience in the areas of genomics, immunology, evolution, and the like. Those who will complete the undergraduate program of Marine Biology are fit to enter medical school and graduate school. On the other hand, Marine Biology graduate students are invited to collaborate in research endeavors with university partners namely, National Center for Coral Reef Research.

11. Boston University

Boston University offers an interdisciplinary course on Marine Biology as part of the core research areas in Biology. Several institutions handle the course, including the Departments of Biology and Earth & Environment, New England Aquarium, National Marine Sanctuary Program, and Sea Education Association.

Any student can apply for a Ph.D. slot provided that they have undergone the necessary biology and chemistry courses. Admissions for this program are competitive, given that Boston University is one of the world’s top schools for marine biologists. Students can use the Biology Research Building and the Science & Engineering Library for research and training purposes.

12. Samford University

Hailed by the Wall Street Journal and Times Higher Education as the first among the universities in the United States in terms of Student Engagement, Samford University is a private, Christian university in Alabama. The university offers a 128-credit Marine Science course consisting of 55-57 credits of major subjects.

The Dauphin Island Sea Lab, managed by the Marine Environmental Science Consortium, is the home of Marine Science students for a semester or two summer terms to fulfill the requirements of the course. Moreover, they are expected to be knowledgeable of General Education (Social Sciences, Natural & Computational Sciences, and Fine Arts), Mathematics, Chemistry, and Physics.

13. University of Oregon – Oregon Institute of Marine Biology

The University of Oregon is famous for its intensive training program in Marine Biology conducted on the main campus and at the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology in Charleston. The undergraduate program covers two years of theoretical learning courses and at least three terms of hands-on, field-based education.

The university also offers internships and Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) programs for students longing for additional exposure in the field. Masteral students are expected to complete 24-credit courses and write a thesis. Doctorate students who are academically excelling are backed by the university for at least four years in the program.

14. University of California, Los Angeles

The University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) is a public university whose expertise lies in the vast fields of Paleobiology, Evolutionary Biology. It is also known to be one of the top universities in the world for marine biology. UCLA’s prestige is also due to its competitive students who have their research published in peer-reviewed journals.

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UCLA is popular for holding the Marine Biology Quarter (MBQ) wherein students have the chance to experience what it is like to be a marine biologist. During the MBQ, the participating students will be under the tutelage of their professors and competent graduate assistants while they conduct their own research projects. The output of their study will be presented during finals week.

15. University of Bologna

The University of Bologna is a prestigious university boasting of multiple research endeavors financially backed by the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research (MIUR) and the Emilia-Romagna Regional Government. The university mainly employs a traditional teaching style for most of its courses yet, it encourages students to take earning opportunities outside the four corners of the classroom.

The two-year masteral course includes a 150-hour internship with the student’s or the Faculty Internship Office’s chosen organization. In addition, students can also attend marine environment seminars, campaigns, and relevant conferences and conventions.

16. Dalhousie University

Dalhousie University is one of the best places to take up Marine Biology due to its proximity to the shores of Halifax, Atlantic Canada. The curriculum is structured strategically placing general biology and foundation-building science courses in the first year of the program. Junior and senior students shall begin to delve deeper into the course as they encounter the areas of diversity and physiology of marine flora and fauna.

Undergraduate Marine Biology students can enroll in an honors class or co-op education. Prospective students who are interested in coupling Marine Biology with Oceanography can apply for the honors class. On the other hand, those who apply for co-op education shall be able to study while working in the industry, government, or ecotourism.

17. University of Melbourne

Widely considered to be one of the best universities in the world for studies in marine biology, the University of Melbourne offers a top-notch program for undergraduates. Since it is a bachelor’s program, the first two years of the curriculum are allocated for the essential courses: Chemistry and Biology. Afterward, an in-depth study of Marine Biology is dedicated to the third year of study.

The university also sees the importance of having non-science subjects in the curriculum, allowing students to have a more holistic college experience. Graduates of this degree can pursue a career in commercial aquaculture or environmental monitoring.

Hopefully, this article on some of the best marine biology schools was helpful. Check also the Available Programs for International Students to learn more about studying abroad.

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FAQs

Which country is best for marine biology? ›

Best countries to study marine biology
  • Marine Biology in USA.
  • Marine Biology in UK.
  • Marine Biology in Canada.
  • Marine Biology in Australia.

What school has the best marine biology program? ›

Best Colleges for Marine Biology
  • Boston University. College of Charleston. Eckerd College. Northeastern University. ...
  • University of California, San Diego. University of California, Santa Barbara. University of California, Santa Cruz. ...
  • University of North Carolina at Wilmington. University of Oregon. University of Rhode Island.

Is Australia good for marine biology? ›

Australia is the epicentre of Marine Biology

Australia boasts some of the world's best marine biology courses. It's also home to some of the biggest employment opportunities in the world.

Does Harvard have marine biology? ›

This course explores the fundamentals of marine biology. Students learn about the complex lifestyles of organisms whose home spans three quarters of our planet. We take a process-driven approach, focusing first on the fundamentals: the interrelated processes of marine physiology, ecology, and evolution.

Is marine biology high paying? ›

While ZipRecruiter is seeing annual salaries as high as $210,000 and as low as $23,000, the majority of Marine Biology salaries currently range between $37,500 (25th percentile) to $208,000 (75th percentile) with top earners (90th percentile) making $208,000 annually across the United States.

What is the highest paying field in marine biology? ›

10 Highest Paying Marine Biology Jobs
  • #6. Aquatic Veterinarian.
  • #5. Marine Archaeologist.
  • #4. Ocean Engineer.
  • #3. Oceanographer.
  • #2. Marine Researcher.
  • #1. Marine Resource Economist.
  • Conclusion.
  • Similar articles.
2 Oct 2022

What GPA do I need for marine biology? ›

A minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0.

Who is the most popular marine biologist? ›

Jacques-Yves Cousteau, co-inventor of the aqua-lung, is well known for popularizing marine biology.

Does marine biology have a future? ›

Marine biology is a field of aquatic science that offers many opportunities in both research and non-research settings. As a marine biologist, you can find jobs in government, private sector, non-research, consulting, industry and academia.

Is it hard to get a job in marine biology? ›

While some of this may be true, there are also long days, travel to sometimes inconvenient places and frequently not enough income. Marine biologist jobs are hard to get, so to be competitive, you need to plan early.

What is the best job for marine biology? ›

Marine biology offers a diverse range of career opportunities including biomedical research scientist, marine biotechnologist, mammologist, ichthyologist (a type of zoologist that deals with fish), environmental consultant, veterinarian, aquarium manager, aquarist and so much more.

Is marine biology tough? ›

Like other scientific careers, a marine biologist can expect tons of competition. Hard work and commitment are the only answers to success in this field.

How smart are marine biologists? ›

Marine biologists are super knowledgeable professionals. Most of them have a degree or two, often a Masters and a PhD. They have spent an age in the university library; while the rest of the world was clubbing, playing football, singing, they have learned to appreciate the “wonders” of chemistry or a math formula.

Is it worth doing marine biology? ›

The good aspects of marine biology are the research and the teaching. If you truly love marine biology and want a career where you can be sure that you have a strong positive impact on people and that you personally will leave the world a better place than when you found it, marine biology is an option for you.

Is marine biology a fun career? ›

As a marine biologist, we get to study the ocean and all the animals and creatures that live in it. The most fun parts of my job are that I'm going to see something and learn something new every day and that I get to travel I get to meet wonderful people who are also excited about what we're doing.

How much do top marine biologists make? ›

Microbiologists
Federal government, excluding postal service$114,050
Research and development in the physical, engineering, and life sciences101,680
Pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing72,490
State government, excluding education and hospitals63,940
1 more row
8 Sept 2022

How much money does a marine biologist make a month? ›

While ZipRecruiter is seeing monthly salaries as high as $7,458 and as low as $1,958, the majority of Marine Biologist salaries currently range between $3,125 (25th percentile) to $6,125 (75th percentile) across the United States.

What branch of biology pays the most? ›

Highest-paying biology jobs
  • Biochemist. ...
  • Medical and health services manager. ...
  • Pharmacist. ...
  • Veterinarian. ...
  • Physician assistant. National average salary: $105,627 per year. ...
  • Oncologist. National average salary: $192,522 per year. ...
  • Dentist. National average salary: $196,417 per year. ...
  • Physician. National average salary: $202,387 per year.

Is Marine Biology a high demand job? ›

Marine biology is a highly competitive field in which the supply of marine scientists far exceeds the demand. Federal and state governmental agencies, the U.S. Navy, and the U.S. Coast Guard are important employers, but the number of positions is limited.

What is a Marine major salary? ›

Marine Corps Major Pay

A Major is a field officer in the United States Marine Corps at DoD paygrade O-4. A Major receives a monthly basic pay salary starting at $5,274 per month, with raises up to $8,805 per month once they have served for over 18 years.

Is there a lot of math in marine biology? ›

A lot of marine biologists use a huge amount of maths, and it's getting more mathematical all the time.”

What math should I take for marine biology? ›

Nearly all college curricula for marine biology majors require at least Calculus 1, and some require Calculus 2 as well. Most colleges first require the successful completion of algebra, trigonometry, and sometimes, elementary analysis -- also known as precalculus -- in order to enroll in calculus.

What is the difference between marine biology and marine science? ›

If you're interested in animal behaviour, choose marine biology. If you'd like to look at the physics of oceanography, choose marine science. Both paths are related and work together.

Who is the most famous female marine biologist? ›

Marine biologist Sylvia Earle has spent more than four decades at the forefront of ocean exploration -- and at age 83, she shows no signs of slowing down.

What are marine biologists called? ›

Marine biology is an umbrella term and there are many specialisations within the domain, such as fish biologist, microbiologist or marine mammologist.

Who is the No 1 biologist in the world? ›

Darwin is known as one of the world's top scientists. He was a geologist, a naturalist, and a biologist. Charles Darwin is regarded as one of the most crucial scientists who have theorized evolution and put forward an understanding of different species in the world.

What are 5 things marine biologist do? ›

EnvironmentalScience.org says that the duties for marine biologists include, “conducting species inventories, testing and monitoring sea creatures exposed to pollutants, collecting and testing ocean samples, preserving specimens and samples of unknown species and diseases, and mapping the distribution, ranges, or ...

What age do marine biologists retire? ›

The typical marine biologist retirement age is dependent on the individual and benefits offered by the employer. Because of the healthy pay rates and job satisfaction, some retire around age 60 or even older, however, this is a choice that varies by individual preference.

What is the average age of a marine biologist? ›

Marine Scientist Age Breakdown

Interestingly enough, the average age of marine scientists is 40+ years old, which represents 52% of the population.

What is the least a marine biologist can make? ›

While ZipRecruiter is seeing annual salaries as high as $77,500 and as low as $22,500, the majority of Marine Biologist Entry Level salaries currently range between $37,000 (25th percentile) to $55,000 (75th percentile) with top earners (90th percentile) making $64,500 annually across the United States.

Can you make a living as a marine biologist? ›

Marine biologists earn an average salary of $66,877 per year in the United States. The specialties within marine biology can range in salary, with more technical marine biology roles that require extensive experience often providing better compensation.

Are marine biologists happy? ›

A solid majority of marine biologists enjoy their work environment, probably contributing to overall higher satisfaction with working as a marine biologist.

Where are marine biologists in demand? ›

Marine biologists can find jobs in a variety of fields. They can work at colleges and universities as researchers, teachers, or administrators. They can work in government agencies and they can also work for museums or privately owned businesses that are involved in the ocean.

Who are the largest employers for Marine Biologist? ›

Top rated
  • United Way. 4.1. 2,382 reviews.
  • Kaiser Permanente. 4.1. 12,362 reviews.
  • EY. 4.0. 8,579 reviews.
  • NASA. 4.4. 1,508 reviews.
  • American Red Cross. 3.7. 7,886 reviews.

What are some disadvantages of being a marine biologist? ›

Immersing yourself in the study of saltwater biomes can be a fascinating career. Some drawbacks may include competition for good jobs and potential safety risks when working at sea. Job security can also be a concern during an economic downturn when government grants that fund scientific research are cut.

Why do so many people want to be marine biologists? ›

Well, according to Medhora, the appeal of marine biology lies in a combined interest in animals and a fascination of the ocean. “Roles like marine biologists are exciting to kids because working with animals is appealing, as is working in the deep blue water.

How do you become a successful marine biologist? ›

How to become a marine biologist
  1. Earn a bachelor's degree. Getting a bachelor's degree in marine biology, zoology or a related discipline may allow you to get an entry-level position in this field. ...
  2. Earn a master's degree. ...
  3. Receive your doctoral degree. ...
  4. Pursue additional training. ...
  5. Choose your career path.

Is being a marine the hardest? ›

To recap: The hardest military branch to get into in terms of education requirements is the Air Force. The military branch with the toughest basic training is the Marine Corps. The hardest military branch for non-males because of exclusivity and male dominance is the Marine Corps.

Do marine biologist have to swim? ›

Marine biologists do not have to be able to dive. Many roles are lab or office based and field work frequently involves surveys which are boat based or on the shoreline. You actually don't even need to know how to swim! Ofcourse, it is exciting to experience being underwater close to the animals that you are studying.

How much money do marine biologists make UK? ›

Average £35,217 per year.

How many hours a week do marine biologist work? ›

Most marine biologists work regular hours in a laboratory, nine to 10 hours a day, 40 to 50 hours a week. They use electron microscopes, computers and other specialized equipment to study specimens. Many marine biologists also do fieldwork.

Which country is best for biologist? ›

Best countries to study biology
  • Biology in USA.
  • Biology in UK.
  • Biology in Canada.
  • Biology in Finland.
  • Biology in Sweden.
  • Biology in Ireland.
  • Biology in Lebanon.
  • Biology in Fiji.

Which subject is best for marine biologist? ›

AS and A levels: Biology is the most important Science you need to take, with Chemistry being a close second. Maths, Geography, Computing or Psychology can also be useful subjects. Whatever you choose, at least two Sciences are recommended if you would like to go on to study Marine Biology.

What type of biologist makes the most money? ›

Highest-paying biology jobs
  • Biochemist. ...
  • Medical and health services manager. ...
  • Pharmacist. ...
  • Veterinarian. ...
  • Physician assistant. National average salary: $105,627 per year. ...
  • Oncologist. National average salary: $192,522 per year. ...
  • Dentist. National average salary: $196,417 per year. ...
  • Physician. National average salary: $202,387 per year.

Is it difficult to find a job in marine biology? ›

While some of this may be true, there are also long days, travel to sometimes inconvenient places and frequently not enough income. Marine biologist jobs are hard to get, so to be competitive, you need to plan early.

Is marine biology worth studying? ›

If you love water and sea life, a career as a marine biologist might appeal to you. Marine biologists study plants, animals, and protists in salt water and work for governments, universities, aquariums, businesses and conservation groups.

Do you travel a lot as a marine biologist? ›

Do you travel often? Yes I travel very often. At this point in my career, I travel almost every month for a meeting, conference, or some field work. My work takes me wonderful places all over the world but it requires being away from home frequently, and sometimes for long periods.

Which job has highest salary for biology students? ›

Forensic Scientist

A bachelor's degree is the minimum requirement for most entry-level jobs, but you'll need to complete additional training before you can work in this field, such as a forensic science certificate program or on-the-job training.

Which field is best in future for biology? ›

Top 50 Fields Of Biology You Can Make Your Career In
TaxonomyEcologyFood Safety
BiochemistryMicrobiologyTheoretical Biology
BiophysicsMolecular BiologyVirology
BiotechnologyMycologyZoology
BotanyParasitologyGenetic Counsellors
11 more rows
29 Nov 2019

Which degree is best for marine? ›

  • BS in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering. ...
  • Bachelor of Science in BIOLOGY & MARINE BIOLOGY. ...
  • BS in Marine Propulsion Plant And Offshore Construction Operation. ...
  • Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering Undergraduate Program. ...
  • Bachelor of Water Engineering. ...
  • Bachelor in Marine Transport Management Engineering.

Is marine biology a high demand job? ›

Marine biology is a highly competitive field in which the supply of marine scientists far exceeds the demand. Federal and state governmental agencies, the U.S. Navy, and the U.S. Coast Guard are important employers, but the number of positions is limited.

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