Research Methods Field Course

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General information

This course provides you with plenty of hands-on experience researching the marine environment on board a research vessel and in the lab. A familiarity with environmental research and sampling methods will help increase the reliability of your data, your value as an employee and/or researcher and your understanding of this critical scientific skill.

The course includes the collection of data from the marine environment, followed by analysis and dissemination, utilising instruments and sampling devices used in physical, geological, biological, chemical and biogeochemical research.  It’s suitable for marine biology, oceanography or science graduates who want to develop a better understanding of research methods and the challenges of conducting research in the marine environment. In particular, the course will provide supplementary skills and training required for future careers in marine environmental consultancy.

The course will include six lectures and five practical sessions; two at sea onboard our research vessel the RV Calanus (5 hours each) and three in the laboratory. Delivered by leading scientists from the Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS), this field course is one of the best introductions to research methods at sea. The lecturers include ecologists, oceanographers, geologists, chemists and physicists to give you a real flavour of research methods used in each scientific discipline.

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Venue: The Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS)
Oban, United Kingdom

Scottish Marine Institute
Oban, Argyll PA37 1QA, UK



£500 (VAT exempt) including all course materials, use of the research vessel and equipment. Please bring a clean lab coat with you for the practical sessions. You may want to arrange overnight accommodation in Oban if required. The weekend is also free for other activities. (These are not included in the course fee.)  


It’s been designed for marine biology, oceanography, or science graduates, and individuals planning to work in marine environmental consultancy who wish to develop a better understanding of research methods and the challenges of working in marine systems.

Application Procedure:

Please apply for the Research Methods Course online, email or call 01631 559000. Numbers are limited on this course due to the capacity of the research vessel, so please book early to secure your place. 


Academic level: Master, PhD, Lifelong Learning
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