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Marine and Environmental Affairs

Master (ISCED 2011 level 7)


Duration 4 semesters
Cost resident US $19,293; nonresident US $33,534 per year

Students learn creative approaches to resolving marine problems and conflicts, charting rational use of living and non-living marine resources, and managing human activities on the coasts, at sea, and in estuaries, wetlands, and large inland bodies of water.

The program prepares students for professional careers in policy making, management, teaching, and research. Students gain familiarity with relevant aspects of the social, technological, and environmental sciences.

Completion of the MMA program normally requires two academic years. In the first year, students develop a comprehensive understanding of the marine affairs field and acquire analytic skills. In the second year, students develop competence in a topical area of interest (e.g., ocean and coastal management, ports and marine transportation, marine environmental protection, marine resources management, ocean and coastal tourism and recreation), and prepare a thesis, complete a capstone project, or complete additional coursework for the courses-only option. . Studies may be adjusted to accommodate prior experience and academic background.

Admission Requirements

  1. Graduate Record Examination general-test scores
  2. Departmental supplementary information form
  3. Three letters of recommendation
  4. Official academic transcripts
  5. Statement of career objectives
  6. Students are normally admitted for autumn quarter only.

Degree Requirements

59 credits as follows:

  • Core Curriculum (29 credits minimum)
    1. Introduction to Marine Affairs: SMEA 500 , SMEA 501, SMEA 502
    2. Economics: SMEA 536. If SMEA 536 is waived, students must still take at least one economics course at the 400 or 500 level.
    3. Marine Law: SMEA 515
    4. Policy Analysis: SMEA 519
    5. Policy Processes: one of SMEA 507 or SMEA 521
    6. Marine Science: SMEA 591. If SMEA 591 is waived, students must still take at least one 400- or 500-level science course
    7. Research (Quantitative) Skills: The required skill level is equivalent to intermediate statistics, including an understanding of point estimates, confidence intervals, and regression equations. Students not at this level take one appropriate course. Recommended courses include SMEA 584, Q SCI 381, or STAT 311. One additional course in research skills (minimum 3 credits) for students in the thesis track.
    8. Marine and Environmental Affairs Advising: SMEA 600 (1 credit in winter and spring required the first year.
Structural components
Internship/Workplace experience
International component
Laboratory training
Practical/Field work
Research Project

ISCED Categories

Policy and governance
Marine and maritime law
Conservation and environmental management
Marine spatial planning
Near- and offshore constructions