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Bachelor of Marine Science (Bachelor of Marine Science )

Bachelor (ISCED 2011 level 6)


Duration 6 semesters
Entry level Bachelor
Cost Annual Tuition Fee: AUD$37,680 (Estimate only)

tudy in JCU's advanced research aquariums and laboratories. Learn how to manage human impacts and preserve dynamic marine environments. Undertake research at the JCU Orpheus Island Research Station, or on-site at various coral reef, island, seagrass and mangrove environments visited when completing this degree.

Develop high-level skills in evolving technologies that are providing solutions to previously unsolvable problems. Build your capabilities in the use of seabed mapping and fish assessment sonar, oceanographic sensors, and a range of technology used for gathering data above and below the waves.

Build networks with the international cohort who study this degree, and with the concentration of marine scientists and managers located in north Queensland. Opportunities may also exist to undertake an exchange program with an international university.
Additional information

View the handbook for a detailed overview of core subjects and available options.

*Excellence in Research Awards 2018-2019.



High achieving Bachelor of Marine Science students can continue their studies through the Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree. This course consists of extra study and the development of a personal research project and thesis. An Honours degree is usually essential for entry to research higher degrees. Refer to the Bachelor of Science (Honours) Handbook for eligibility information.

Learn from world-leading marine scientists whose research is ranked well above world standards*.

Benefit from practical experiences working on and studying the World Heritage Great Barrier Reef. Develop hands-on skills in some of the world's most diverse and dynamic coastal and marine waterways and ecosystems.

Career Opportunities

The JCU Marine Science degree is one of the most respected courses of its kind in the world^.

Graduates can pursue a career in a diverse range of areas including fisheries science and management, marine resource management and conservation, coastal and marine geoscience, oceanography, and marine technology.

JCU Marine Science graduates find employment with both Government and private industry, in Australia and overseas. They fill positions such as marine conservation officer, marine planner, marine biologist, marine scientists for consulting engineering companies, oceanographer, aquatic veterinarian, fisheries manager, marine education and communication, and environmental manager.

^JCU Marine and Fresh Water Biology is ranked number 1 in the world by the Centre for World University Rankings.

Structural components
Internship/Workplace experience
Laboratory training
Practical/Field work

Application procedure

What you need to know before you apply

Certified copies of supporting documents

You must supply the following information with your application:

  • Previous and current certificates and academic transcripts
  • The Grading Scale used at the institution(s) where you have undertaken your studies
  • English proficiency test results (if required and available at time of application)
  • Your passport to confirm your name and citizenship (if available at time of application)

You can speed up the application process by emailing copies of your documents to If your application is approved you must then post certified copies and/or documents to:

James Cook International
James Cook University
Townsville QLD 4811, AUSTRALIA

If your documents are in a language other than English, you must provide both certified translations and a certified copy of the original document.

An acceptable certified document is a photocopy of the original document, signed and certified as a copy of the original by a public notary, registered agent of JCU, or a representative of the institution. Copies of certified copies are not acceptable.

Credit and Articulation

Before applying for credit for previous studies you should read the Credit and Articulation Procedure. You can review any possible credits you may have with our Credit Calculator. When you apply for credit you must submit the course syllabi (subject outline) for each relevant subject and ensure the subject corresponds to a similar JCU subject.

Entry requirements

As well as having the prerequisites for this course, you must also meet minimum academic and language requirements.

Check the minimum English language proficiency requirements for this course in the Course Handbook.

If you meet the academic requirements for this course, but not the minimum English requirements, you will receive a packaged offer. This includes the opportunity to take an English language program as well as an offer to study a degree at JCU. Your JCU degree offer will be conditional on you gaining a certain grade in your English program.

Application deadlines

  • 31 January for commencement in teaching period 1 (semester 1)
  • 30 June for commencement in teaching period 2 (semester 2)

Our campuses in Singapore and Brisbane operate on a trimester system – application deadlines vary for Singapore and Brisbane. View academic calendars.

How to apply

Gather electronic copies of your documentation, including an Application for Credit form, if relevant.

Register using your full legal name as it appears on your passport.

Complete all questions, upload all documents, and submit your application. You may wish to include a second course preference.

Ready to apply? Apply now.


Help with your application

If you need help with your application, or would like to change your preferences (e.g. course, campus, commencing semester) after you have submitted your application please contact JCU International Admissions at or phone: +61 7 4781 5601

Learning outcomes

The graduates of James Cook University are prepared and equipped to create a brighter future for life in the tropics world-wide.

JCU graduates are committed to lifelong learning, intellectual development, and to the display of exemplary personal, professional and ethical standards. They have a sense of their place in the tropics and are charged with professional, community, and environmental responsibility.  JCU graduates appreciate the need to embrace and be acquainted with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples of Australia. They are committed to reconciliation, diversity and sustainability. They exhibit a willingness to lead and to contribute to the intellectual, environmental, cultural, economic and social challenges of regional, national, and international communities of the tropics.

Graduates of the Bachelor of Marine Science at James Cook University will be able to:

  • Integrate and apply a coherent body of theoretical and technical knowledge of the marine environment and sustainable management of marine and coastal resources, with depth in the underlying concepts and principles in at least two science disciplines

  • Critically appraise the role and relevance of marine sciences in the creation of sustainable futures, particularly in the tropics, worldwide

  • Demonstrate broad understanding of the methods of science, particularly as applied to marine sciences, including the creative processes involved in developing scientific knowledge and its contestable and testable nature

  • Retrieve, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information from a range of sources

  • Plan and conduct reliable, evidence-based laboratory and/or field investigations, by selecting and applying appropriate methods, techniques and tools

  • Organise, analyse and interpret scientific data using mathematical, statistical and/or technological skills

  • Convey scientific ideas, arguments and conclusions clearly and coherently through well-developed written and oral communication skills and a variety of media

  • Identify, analyse and generate solutions to unpredictable or complex problems relating to the behaviour and management of marine systems by applying knowledge and skills with initiative and well-developed judgement

  • Critically review regulatory requirements, ethical principles and, where appropriate, cultural frameworks, to work effectively, responsibly and safely in diverse contexts and interdisciplinary or multidisciplinary teams

  • Reflect on current skills, knowledge and attitudes to manage their professional learning needs and performance, autonomously and in collaboration with others.


English (Units 3/4,C), Mathematical Methods (Units 3/4,C), Chemistry (Units 3/4,C).

Recommended: at least one of Biology, Earth Science, Geography, Maths C or Physics (4,SA)

Minimum English language proficiency requirements

Applicants of non-English speaking backgrounds must meet the English language proficiency requirements of Band 1 – Schedule II of the JCU Admissions Policy.

Additional course requirements

Applicants who have not completed high school intermediate level Mathematics B (or equivalent) must select MA1020: Preparatory Mathematics as part of their study plan to successfully complete the Bachelor of Marine Science.

Applicants who have not completed high school Chemistry (or equivalent) must select CH1020: Preparatory Chemistry as part of their study plan to successfully complete the Bachelor of Marine Science.

Students should undertake the above subject/s in intensive mode where available and be aware that restrictions may apply to electives if they wish to complete in the normal three (3) year time frame. These subjects typically start earlier than the standard course commencement date. Contact JCU on 1800 246 446 for more information.

This course involves mandatory field work and any costs associated with that field work will be at the student’s expense.

ISCED Categories

Personal skills and communication
Conservation and environmental management
Physical and chemical oceanography