MSc in Oceanography

General information

Master en Océanographie

Observing and understanding ocean life. Studying marine flora and fauna. Studying undersea reliefs and their composition. Designing robots that operate under water, etc. The study of oceans is essential for managing the planet and is of interest to all scientific disciplines.

Oceanography is multidisciplinary: oceanographers study biology, chemistry, physics, geology and geography. Their fields of study include offshore oil deposits, health, coastal environments, fisheries resource management and the modelling of oceans.

The ocean, which covers almost 3/4 of the planet, is an essential component of the climate system since it contributes, just like the wind, to redistributing heat and, in particular, transporting energy from tropical regions to the poles. Ocean currents (such as the Gulf Stream) provide about half of all the heat transported from the equator to the poles, that is to say, a proportion that is equal to that of the atmosphere. Ocean currents are to a large extent generated by the winds, and the ocean plays a role in regulating certain climate disturbances, since it constitutes a powerful thermal stabiliser.

A reservoir of life and food, a means of communication and a great purveyor of mineral resources, the ocean is the most immense and richest part of the globe.


Handling marine environments

Initially, students take theoretical courses in biology, physics, chemistry, geology and geography. These courses provide an introduction to the oceans and confer the specific foundations needed for their study. The subjects taught are directly linked to the marine environment (deep seas, coastal zones, etc.). Some of the concepts used, such as marine ecology, the law of the sea, fishing and marine meteorology are also addressed.

Integrated internship

In addition to traditional practical work done in the laboratory (work on computer, demonstrations, seminars, aquarium visits, study trip on board oceanographic boats, etc.), they participate in a 2-week integrated internship at STARESO in Corsica.

Guided by oceanographers, they perform all stages associated with studying the marine environment (water sampling, measuring, assays, data processing, etc.).


With a solid foundation, students can now specialise in research or turn directly to the professional arena by selecting several cutting-edge fields of specialisation in oceanography.

5 options:

  • Biogeochemistry and climate change, 
  • Marine ecology and biodiversity, 
  • Exploitation of marine resources, anthropic pressures, 
  • Modelling and operational oceanography, 
  • Data collection and processing. 

Moreover, they will have the opportunity to complete a one-month internship at a company or laboratory in order to meet researchers and professionals in the field.

Students also spend around half a year preparing their Final Dissertation, in the course of which they carry out research in a laboratory, a research station or a company.

In order to enable our future graduates to perfect their English and meet students and future oceanographers from other countries, some classes are taught in English jointly with students selected by the Erasmus Mundus MER programme.


Learning outcome:

At the end of their studies, graduates with a Master's in Oceanography will have acquired the following specific skills:

  • Planning and conducting scientific research in a marine environment, including the use of bibliographical resources, experimentation, statistical analysis, interpretation and discussion of results in an environmental context, notably via the knowledge and analysis of different orders of magnitude. 
  • Mastering the concepts and vocabulary of all oceanographic disciplines and being able to share them in different contexts (teaching, research, conferences and international projects); 
  • Analysing the biotic and abiotic components of a marine environment, using in-depth knowledge of oceanography and specialised knowledge gained while working on the Final Dissertation. 
  • Handling sensors and measuring devices and preparing and analysing samples used in oceanography. 

At the end of the programme, graduates with a Master's in Oceanography will also be able to:

  • understand how a system works through data observation, collection, analysis and modelling; 
  • design and use a mathematical model. 

Like all university graduates, young oceanographers will also be able to:

  • engage in autonomous learning with self-assessment and reflectivity; 
  • adopt a working method that allows for the acquisition of new knowledge and adaptation to new situations; 
  • acquire the ability to summarise in addition to good oral and written scientific communication skills; 
  • analyse scientific data and literature critically; 
  • separate the essential elements of a scientific problem from the incidental elements; 
  • work in a team, define and develop their professional identity.
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The highlighted icons, represent the fields of education (in compliance with ISCED Classification) engaged during this course/programme.

0532 - Marine Geology", "0532 - Physical and chemical oceanography


Venue: University of Liège
Liège, Belgium

Faculty of Sciences
Bâtiment B6b, Quartier Agora
Allée du six Aout 17B, 4000 Liège



Droits d'inscription

  • Taux complet : 835 €
  • Taux intermédiaire : 374 €
  • Taux boursier : 0 €

Modes de paiements acceptés: carte bancaire (Bancontact, Maestro, Visa, Mastercard) ou virement.
Pour votre sécurité et la nôtre, les paiements en espèces sont refusés.


Special access conditions

  • Are you a Belgian student with a degree awarded in Belgium? Please find information about official requirements in the French version of this page. 
  • You are a E.U citizen and hold a diploma awarded outside Belgium and you wish to apply for a master's degree, please find more information about the procedure on this page
  • You are a non E.U citizen and hold a diploma awarded outside Belgium and you wish to apply for a master's degree, please find more information about the procedure on this page

Subject area prerequisites

  • A good knowledge of English; 
  • Strong skills and knowledge gained during your Bachelor's programme in science, applied science or other higher education course (see entry requirements). 
  • Ideally, a solid scientific background (physics, chemistry, biology, geology) and mathematics.

Application Procedure:


Grant Opportunities:

Aides sociales et financières


Academic level: Master

Qualification: Master of Science

Occupations (not validated):
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