Marine Biology Education

When you are pursuing a career in marine biology or marine sciences, take some time to learn about the basic marine biologist education requirements. Marine biologists typically have at least a master's degree or a doctorate degree in the field. Their position is very research-intensive and a bachelor's degree isn't enough to fulfill the standard marine biology education requirements. Marine biology education programs prepare students to work in laboratories or in the field to collect marine samples. Marine biologists are trained to undertake a wide range of research projects where they learn about the physical, chemical and biological processes of different marine plants and animals.


Typical Marine Biologist Education Requirements

Most employers prefer students to have at least a master's degree or a doctorate degree in the field of marine biology. Marine biologist education requirements include taking a series of general education courses, marine biology-related courses, and science courses that help the student learn the basics about the scientific method and standard research processes.

Students applying for marine biology positions need to fulfill the following marine biologist education requirements:

  • High school diploma or GED
  • Bachelor's degree in biology or related sciences
  • Internship or externship in the field
  • Masters of Science Degree in Marine Biology or Marine Science
  • Doctorate Degree in Marine Biology (optional)

Most marine biologists who end up teaching or working on university-based research projects have a doctorate degree in marine biology. A PhD in marine biology is heavily focused on research and this type of marine biology education program may involve working abroad, or working at sea for a certain period of time. A master's degree typically covers advanced science studies and includes subjects in chemistry, biology, physics and zoology

Many master's degree programs also include a semester of research studies so that students can acquire some real-world experience and skills before they enter the workforce. Students may choose to complete an unpaid or paid internship during a summer of their undergraduate or graduate studies to acquire even more skills and experience. Some employers do prefer candidates to meet the basic marine biology education requirements and have completed some type of internship. An internship can also be the first step towards a rewarding career with a specific employer - many employers hire candidates who have completed an internship with the same company at some point in their educational career.

Completing a Marine Biology Education Online

Some students enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate marine biology education program may be able to complete several courses online. While it's not possible to complete an entire marine biology degree program over the Web, it is possible to take some of general education courses and a few classroom-based marine biology courses in a virtual classroom setting.

Completing a marine biology education online can give students a chance to work at their own pace and juggle a busy schedule. However, they will still need to make time to complete their labs and fieldwork studies at a training center or research center. Some courses are never offered online and require the student to attend their courses at a campus.