Oceanography Minor

This minor focuses on biological, chemical, geological, and physical oceanography. Students pursuing the minor must take at least 15 credits of 2000-level and above courses, including 3 courses from Group A, and 2 additional courses from either group A or B:

Marine Sciences majors may not choose MARN 4010. No more than 2 courses may be counted towards both this minor and the student's major.

A Plan of Study for the Minor in Oceanography needs to be approved by an advisor in the Department of Marine Sciences and submitted to the Degree Audit Office during the first four weeks of the semester when the student expects to graduate.  Details of this minor are given in the undergraduate catalog.

Substitutions are not allowed for courses in a minor.

Group A

MARN 4010 Biological Oceanography
3 credits. Structure and function of marine food webs, from primary producers to top trophic levels; interaction of marine organisms with the environment; energy and mass flow in food webs; elemental cycling; coupling between pelagic and benthic environments.

MARN 4030W Chemical Oceanography
3 credits. Composition, origin and solution chemistry of seawater and the marine biogeochemical cycles of salts, elements and gases. Distributions and transfer in the marine environment through chemical equilibria, rates, redox, partitioning, ocean circulation, biological cycles and crustal exchanges.

MARN 4050 Geological Oceanography
3 credits. Concepts in geological oceanography, including the role of plate tectonics in the control of the Earth and ocean system, fundamentals of biosphere-geosphere interaction over geologic timescales, and the reconstruction of past climates using marine sediment archives.

MARN 4060 Physical Oceanography
3 credits. Overview of physical properties and dynamics influencing the oceans and coastal waters. Descriptions of global water property distributions, surface mixed layer, pycnocline, surface heat fluxes, and major ocean currents. Introduction to dynamics of ocean circulation, waves, tides, and coastal circulation.

Group B

MARN 2002 Marine Sciences I
Second semester (Avery Point). 3 credits. Biological, chemical, physical, and geological structure and function of coastal systems; a worldwide survey with emphasis on important coastal habitats and processes.

MARN 3000 The Hydrosphere and Global Climate
3 credits. Interactions of the physical and chemical components of the global water and energy cycles and how all apply to climate. The science behind climate change predictions reviewed and applied to case studies.

MARN 3001 Marines Sciences II
First semester (Avery Point). 4 credits. Biological, chemical, physical and geological structure and function of coastal systems, with a special focus on field observations in three important coastal habitats: beaches and rocky shores, marshes, and estuaries.

MARN 3015 Molecular Approaches to Biological Oceanography
3 credits. Principles and technology in nucleic acid purification and manipulation, DNA fingerprinting, gene cloning and sequencing, phylogenetic analysis, and detection of gene expression (mRNA and protein). Application examples in marine ecological studies.

MARN 3016 Marine Microbiology
(Also offered as MCB 3636.) First semester (Avery Point). Second semester (Storrs). 3 credits. A general survey of the taxonomy, physiology and ecology of marine microorganisms.

MARN 3017 Plankton Ecology
3 credits. Ecology of planktonic organisms (bacteria, protista and metazoa). The evolutionary ecology concept, methods of research, special features of aquatic habitats; adaptations to aquatic environments; population biology; predation, competition, life histories, community structure, and role of plankton in ecosystem metabolism.

MARN 3060 Coastal Circulation and Sediment Transport
Second semester (Avery Point). 3 credits. Circulation and mixing in estuaries and the inner continental shelf, including surface gravity waves, tides, and buoyancy and wind-driven circulation. Coastal sediments, geomorphology, and processes of sedimentation, erosion and bioturbation. Required field trips.

MARN 3061 Environmental Fluid Dynamics
3 credits. Introduction to fluid dynamics with applications to coastal waters, estuaries, rivers, lakes, and ground water flows. Topics include waves, tides turbulence, mixing, drag, lift, effects on organisms, and wind driven circulation.


For more information please contact.

Michael M. Whitney Associate Professor of Marine Sciences
Email: michael.whitney@uconn.edu