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Marine Ecology



Course format On-site
Date 2021-01-11 - 2021-05-07

The course gives a broad introduction in marine ecology with a focus on Norwegian and Nordic conditions. Important issues are eco-clines and marine biogeography; chemical-physical factors and the abiotic environment; biodiversity; phytoplankton, pigments and storage components; toxic microalga; photosynthesis; growth rate and respiration of microalgae; limiting and controlling factors of algal growth; heterotrophic plankton; grouping of plankton; functional plankton groups; feed uptake, metabolism and energetics; decomposition chain; trophic level, -transfers, and -efficiency; population dynamics in planktonic communities; global marine production; aquaculture and fisheries; carbon pump and climate, disturbing impacts on marine ecosystems, principles for conservation of marine ecosystems.


Basic education in biology from universities or comparable.

Learning outcomes


The candidate will have knowledge about:

  • General definitions and concepts of marine ecology and biodiversity
  • Geographic patterns of organisms and the abiotic marine environment
  • Plankton and nekton organisms of marine ecosystems, with a focus on functional groups
  • Photosynthesis of autotrophic plankton
  • Decomposition of organic material and food web dynamics
  • Various sources of impacts on marine ecosystems
  • Goals and methods for conservation of marine ecosystems


The candidate may describe:

  • The principle definitions and concepts of marine ecology
  • The important abiotic factors that drive organisms of marine ecosystems
  • The main groups of marine organisms and their interactions
  • The main pathways of production and decomposition in the sea
  • Typical effects of fisheries, aquaculture and physical disturbancies on marine ecosystems
  • Principles and methods for conservation of marine ecosystems

General competence:

The candidate knows and understands:

  • The importance of the marine abiotic environment for the richness of species
  • The main functions of autotrophic and heterotrophic organisms in the marine ecosystem
  • Mechanisms of the fundamental relations and interactions among organisms and among organisms and their abiotic environment
  • The principle transport mechanisms of material and energy in the food webs
  • Identification/classification/reduction of various types of impacts on marine ecosystems


ISCED Categories

Conservation and environmental management