Seas and oceans play an important role in our day-to-day lives, and over 65% of the world’s population lives or works in coastal areas. Vital for our economy and health – as well as for climate, food, and biodiversity – seas and oceans have immense societal significance.
However, the oceans are changing rapidly as human-induced pollution and CO2 emissions lead to warming, acidification and deoxygenation of seas and oceans. The impact on organisms, ocean chemistry, and currents on short to long timescales is uncertain, affecting ecosystems, but also the economy and policymaking.
Essentially, all outstanding issues in Marine Sciences are multidisciplinary. A broad, holistic research approach to this rapidly developing field is therefore necessary to identify risks, improve future scenarios, and to make the transition towards sustainable interactions between man and seas and oceans.
Crucial questions you will investigate during your studies include:
- How does global warming and changing ocean circulation impact ecosystem functioning?
- How do changing ecosystems affect ocean chemistry?
- How does a change in ocean chemistry affect biology?
Marine science research expertise
Utrecht University has the most extensive in-house expertise in marine sciences of all Dutch universities, and our staff participate in numerous international marine programmes and projects.
The multidisciplinary focus of the programme will prepare you for a challenging career in a wide range of international organisations that are active in coastal areas and oceans and in harnessing society for future ocean change.
The Marine Sciences Master’s programme will enable you to gain a broad understanding of marine systems, but also specialise in the physical, chemical, biological, and geological processes taking place in seas and oceans. You will investigate how seas and oceans functioned in the past, are functioning at present, and will function in the future.
You will explore issues such as energy and climate change, mining, pollution, the flow of traffic at sea, fisheries policies, and coastal defences. Examining the consequences of these themes – such as the fact that the disappearance of the Arctic’s summer ice cap will allow drilling for oil and gas – requires an multidisciplinary approach.
Job opportunities in the private sector may be at companies focussing on hydrocarbon and mineral exploration and production or offshore and other engineering firms or consultancies. You may also find employment at international organisations that are active in coastal areas and oceans, such as the United Nations.
Possible opportunities include :
Dutch government authorities
- Rijkswaterstaat (Public Works and Water Management)
- ministries such as Infrastructure and the Environment Institutes
- the Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ)
- IMARES Research Institute
- the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL)
- the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM)
- the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI)
- similar international organisations
Accredited by the NVAO - Accreditation Organisation of the Netherlands and Flanders.
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- Microbes and Biogeochemistry
- Paleoceanography and Climate Variability
- Ocean Waves
- Aquatic and Environmental Chemistry
- Marine Sciences
- Making, Analyzing and Interpreting Observations
Check out the full curriculumVisit official programme website
- 24 months
Start dates & application deadlines
- Apply before , EEA/EU
- Apply before , National
- Apply before , International
DisciplinesEarth Sciences Biology Aquaculture & Fisheries View 3 other Masters in Aquaculture & Fisheries in Netherlands
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We are not aware of any academic requirements for this programme.
- The programme Marine Sciences is open to students with a Bachelor's degree in a relevant subject (e.g. earth sciences, biology, physics, chemistry, physical geography, civil or environmental engineering, applied mathematics) or a bachelor’s degree from a University College.
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International20715 EUR/yearTuition FeeBased on the original amount of 20715 EUR per year and a duration of 24 months.
EU/EEA2168 EUR/yearTuition FeeBased on the original amount of 2168 EUR per year and a duration of 24 months.
Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.
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Apply and win up to €10000 to cover your tuition fees.