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This program focuses on the physical/chemical properties of marine environments and their ecosystems. Studies on marine organisms in the context of their habitats will also be examined. We will study elements of biological, chemical, and physical oceanography and field sampling methods, with associated statistics and laboratory techniques. The class will study chemical and physical features of marine waters, nutrient dynamics, carbonate chemistry, biological productivity, and regional topics in marine science. Concepts will be applied via faculty-designed experiments and student-designed research projects. Data analysis will be facilitated through the use of analytical software and elementary statistics. Seminars will analyze appropriate primary literature on topics from lectures and research projects.
Winter quarter will emphasize laboratory techniques and principles of oceanography and we will take a multi-day trip to San Juan Island to carry out field work. Spring quarter will emphasize the application of techniques and principles to research projects, as well as the appropriate collection, analysis, and reporting of results from student projects.
The faculty will facilitate identification of student research projects, which will include a range of topics, such as studies of carbonate dynamics in Puget Sound, diel vertical migration of zooplankton, among others. You will design your research project during winter quarter and write research proposals that will undergo class-wide peer review. The research projects will then be carried out during spring quarter and, at the end of the program, you will document your work in written research papers and oral presentations.
This offering will prepare you for careers and advanced study in:
marine science, environmental chemistry, natural resources and other environmental science fields.
Credits per quarter
At least three quarters of college chemistry with labs, three quarters of college biological sciences with lab or fieldwork, and ability to work easily with numbers and equations (precalculus or equivalent). Prerequisites will be verified the first day of class.
- Hybrid Online Learning - This offering delivers < 25% of its instruction online, rather than via face-to-face contact between you and your instructors.
$440 in winter for a four-night trip to Friday Harbor Laboratories on San Juan Island.
Upper division science credit:
Up to 16 upper division science credits per quarter may be earned in biological oceanography, marine chemistry, scientific methodology and research for those students completing both quarters of the program at a satisfactory level.
Independent group research projects are an integral part of this program. Projects are designed during winter quarter and carried out during spring quarter.
Class Size: 50
Located in: Olympia