This is the transcript for the video Marine Biology – Course Info

Welcome, thanks for tuning in to hear about the Bachelor of Marine Biology at UTS. Before I begin, I would like to acknowledge the Gadigal people of Eora nation upon whose ancestral lands UTS City campus now stands, and I would like to pay my respects to the elders past, present and emerging. Acknowledging them as the traditional custodians of knowledge for this land. My name is Dr. Katherina Petrou and I’m the program director for marine biology at UTS. I’ll be running through some information about the marine biology degree for you today. In this session, I will cover why UTS what is marine biology and why is it important, I’ll provide you with some information about the course and subjects within the course, as well as highlight some of the career opportunities. I will also go through briefly at the end, how to apply. Why study science at UTS? Well, it’s to gain real world skills at UTS, you’ll gain technical expertise and real world experience outside the classroom with hands on projects and internships. You’ll also get to learn from the best. Our teachers include science leaders responsible for advances in their fields. They are researchers, practitioners and industry experts. You also have access to world class facilities, including specialised laboratories and facilities packed with the latest technologies, including super labs and crime scene simulation lab and plenty more. You will get some industry connection, we’ll be able to connect you with employers, thanks to our extensive industry and public sector connections. You will get to work on research projects with our partners, including Department of Agriculture, Fisheries NSW, Sydney Institute of Marine Science and Sydney Aquarium, as well as others.

And you’ll be able to do research that has impact. At UTS you get to immerse yourself in a world leading research community where life changing discoveries take place. At UTS, we’re ranked above world standard in all scientific disciplines. But why marine biology at UTS? Well, for me, the answer is the people who teach you and the experiences they will help you have. Our environmental scientists are passionate about their research and their teaching and love sharing their knowledge with you. We are all leaders in our respective research fields, with strong industry and government connections. We are also advocates of practical based learning. So a lot of hands on skills and hands on learning takes place during the degree, which includes a lot of field experience. So there are a number of excellent field excursions and activities in the field to get you out there and experienced in all those sampling techniques. But what is marine biology? Well, marine biology is essentially the study of life in the oceans. It’s really aimed at looking at the study of marine life and its relationship with its environment, it includes conservation of marine biodiversity, investigating human impacts on marine life and its habitats, and also trying to understand sustainable uses of marine resources. In marine biology, you study plant and animal life forms from microscopic pick of plankton and bacteria all the way to the majestic blue whale, the largest creature to have ever existed on that planet. Marine biology includes a wide variety of disciplines, so not only biology of organisms, but also biological oceanography, cell biology, chemistry, ecology, geology, molecular biology and zoology, as well as marine conservation.

But why study it? Well, because it is important 70% of our planet’s surface is covered by ocean. The average depth of which is about 3.6km. That’s a lot of water. In Australia alone, the oceans contribute 44 billion dollars annually to our economy through food, tourism, recreation, shipping, natural resources. But more importantly, our oceans transport heat from the equator to the poles, regulating global climate and weather patterns. They also produce over half of the world’s oxygen. Not only that, but our oceans have absorbed more than 30% of carbon dioxide emissions since the Industrial Revolution. So they’re incredibly important. And a quote from Mitchell sums it up quite beautifully. ‘If all life on land were to vanish tomorrow, creatures of the ocean would flourish. But if the opposite happened and the oceans life perished, then the creatures on land would die, too.’ We are dependent on our oceans and their health and survival. But really, why study marine biology? Well, to make a difference in the world. What do you get to study at UTS? Well, in the marine biology degree, you will be doing some microbiology. You will look at estuarine and coastal health, fish biology and fisheries resource management, you’ll also get subjects that look at climate change impacts and solutions, you get to study both tropical and temperate marine ecosystems and get a broad scope overview of conservation of marine biodiversity.

What the course looks like, this is the core structure of marine biology here, and if we just take first year, first year is a generic science year within the faculty, where you really get your foundational science subjects. But in second year you start to specialise, looking at ecology, experimental design, as well as your marine subjects such as fish biology and fisheries, aquatic ecology, marine phycology, microbial ecology, as well as some subjects on animal behaviour and stream and lake assessment of algae. In third, you specialise further in marine biology and higher level subjects, including environmental protection and management and marine productivity and climate change and coral reef ecosystems. In the last part of your last year, we have what is termed a free elective space where you can choose four electives of your choice or subjects of your choice, or undertake an internship or research project which is highly recommended. And that can be done either by replacing, substituting one up to four subjects. And it can really be tailored to what you’re interested in and and help specialise your degree and make your CV unique, if you like. So you can undertake that internship in partnership with academics here at the university or take a placement external with industry or some other corporation. And it’s a really good way to distinguish yourself from other graduates in choosing something of interest there. So some of your marine subjects include fish, biology and fisheries, which covers fish biology and explores major management requirements for ecological sustainability of fisheries.

There’s also a field trip to Sydney Institute of Marine Science at Chowder Bay, which you can see there, and that includes where you undertake fieldwork and snorkelling, as well as use the laboratories there and meet the researchers that work there and have some lectures from industry experts. In aquatic ecology you assess, it’s the general assessment of health and diversity of river systems and estuaries, but it gives students a comprehensive understanding of the ecology of aquatic ecosystems, both freshwater and marine. It also introduces students to the effects of anthropogenic impacts of extreme and catchment activities. And how these influence approaches to managing water resources and again, you’ll get to do some field activities and field sampling. In marine phycology, which looks at the biology, physiology and ecology of marine algae, you get to study, undertake experimental studies into the invisible world of marine microalgae and uncover their role in key processes in the marine environment. So this image shows you the microscopic marine algae, which are the base of the marine food and play key roles in nutrient cycling in the ocean and supply 50% of the Earth’s oxygen in the atmosphere through their photosynthesis. So they’re incredibly important components of the marine environment. You will also in this subject test important ecological concepts for community ecology and seaweed biology during a three day field trip to Pearl Beach in the Central Coast. In marine productivity and climate change, you will investigate the drivers of primary production in central marine ecosystems and explore how rising atmospheric CO2 and climate change are threatening marine marine ecosystems.

You will also get to critically examine climate change solutions. In third year, one of your capstone subjects takes you to Heron Island on the Great Barrier Reef where you get to interact with many of its wonderful creatures. Not only that, you get to learn about diversity and vulnerability of coral reef ecosystems, surveying the reef and its biodiversity firsthand with lots of snorkelling trips, including fish and coral surveys. And you also get to undertake physiological and behavioural experiments with reef invertebrates and fishes. So as far as career options with marine biology degree, firstly, you have a science degree which is valuable for all employees because it shows you have the ability to think critically, be analytical and have great communication skills. But on top of that, we’ve had graduates employed in fisheries, national parks and wildlife, environment protection industries, in infrastructure, natural resources and planning, both government and industry. We also have graduates who are employed by local councillors, environmental officers in resource industries and consulting firms as research officers, at CSIRO, as well as universities or teachers at schools. And then there’s things like eco-tourism or documentary making and various other aspects of science communication.

Thank you for watching. I hope this information video has been insightful, if you have any questions at all, please, please feel free to get in touch with us. You can contact us via email at and don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Thank you and goodbye.