Academics | Introduction to Oceanography

Course Code: OCE 2002

3 Credits - 45 Contact Hours


Course Overview:

This course is designed to introduce students to important concepts in the study of the oceans and basic oceanographic research. Topics covered include chemical, geological, physical and biological oceanography, as well as basic concepts in the management of the marine environment. The material will be delivered in interactive lectures, and many will be reinforced with practical activities. Processes that are directly relevant to sailing, navigation, and ecosystems visited will be emphasized. Many topics will also be addressed through written assignments followed by class presentations. Students will carry out their own oceanography research projects in small groups. This course is appropriate for both science and non-science majors.

Course Objectives:

  • To provide an overview of important oceanographic processes
  • To present major marine ecosystems, including trophic relationships of their inhabitants and adaptions for various environmental conditions
  • To increase awareness of anthropogenic impacts in the marine environment and potential solutions

Course Outcomes:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to…

  • Explain important concepts of the water environment, including water chemistry,
    components of seawater, and transmission of energy
  • Describe the factors that govern primary production in the oceans, and which areas typically have the highest rates of primary production
  • Describe major marine ecosystems and their main characteristics
  • Explain the ocean’s bathymetric features based on the theory of plate tectonics
  • Explain the world’s major atmospheric and oceanic circulation patterns and the processes governing them
  • Outline the processes governing tides and waves
  • Summarize important concepts related to fisheries, aquaculture and management of the marine environment
  • Read primary scientific literature and synthesize key points on a given topic

Academic Materials:

All required course materials are provided by Sea|mester throughout the voyage.

  • Introduction to the World’s Oceans, 10th edition. Sverdrup, K., Armburst, V. 2008. McGraw-Hill. ISBN10:0073376701

Download OCE 2002 Syllabus

Student Handbook

For complete course overviews and syllabi, download the Sea|mester student handbook