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Marine biology minor - Program description

StarfishProgram description

  • Program title: Marine biology minor
  • Total credits for the minor: minimum of 15 credits (minimum of 5 courses)
  • Note: Only one course (maximum 3 credits) from a student’s major may count towards the elective credits for the minor.

Marine Biology Core – 9 Credits

Three introductory courses provide an overview of the chemistry and biology of marine organisms and marine environments.

  • ESCI 1006: Oceanography
  • FW 2003: Marine Biology
  • BIOL 2007: Marine Animal Diversity Laboratory OR FW 4136: Ichthyology

Oceanography with Lab (ESCI 1006, 4 credits, fall) This course helps students explore the complexity of earth’s oceans from geological, chemical, and physical perspectives.  Topics include marine chemistry, dynamics of ocean currents, tides, waves, and weather, biogeochemical cycles, and the impact of oceans on humans.

Marine Biology (FW 2003, 3 credits, spring) This course seeks to instill a basic understanding of, and interest in, the major themes of life in the oceans including the nature of the aquatic life, the diversity and ecology of oceanic ecosystems, and the effects of human civilization on these systems. Many of the greatest ecological threats to global ecosystems are marine (ex. collapse of world fisheries, fishing down the food chain, ocean acidification, coal bleaching, etc.) and, as such, a global university needs to educate its students in this area.

Marine Animal Diversity Laboratory (BIOL 2007, 2 credits, fall and spring) This course is a survey of marine animal diversity, with an emphasis on understanding the major animal groups, how they are related to one another, how they differ in structure, and how each group achieves survival and reproduction in the diverse environments of the Earth.

Ichthyology (FW 4136, 4 credits, fall) This course focuses on fish biology, adaptations to different environments and modes of living, and environmental relationships. Lab emphasizes anatomy and identification of Minnesota fishes.

Marine Biology Elective Courses – minimum of 6 credits.

Students will select marine biology-related courses such as the ones listed below. Approval of elective courses will be at the discretion of the Director of Undergraduate Studies.

Take 6 or more credit(s) from the following:
  • BIOL 4590 - Coral Reef Ecology (2.0 cr)
  • BIOL 4596 - Coral Reef Ecology (Dive Trip) (2.0 cr)
  • CFAN 3502 - Bahamas--Tropical Marine Biology and Shark Ecology (2.0 cr)
  • ESCI 4402 - Biogeochemical Cycles in the Ocean (3.0 cr)
  • FW 4136 - Ichthyology (4.0 cr)
  • FW 4401 - Fish Physiology and Behavior (3.0 cr)
  • EEB 4611 - Biogeochemical Processes (3.0 cr)
Take 0 - 1 course(s) from the following:
  • EEB 5601 - Limnology (3.0 cr)
  • ESPM 4061W - Water Quality and Natural Resources [ENV, WI] (3.0 cr)