Master of Marine Biology

James Cook University

Program Overview

Develop a comprehensive knowledge of marine biology as well as a diverse skill set with this interdisciplinary marine biology degree. Participate in specialised, hands-on training in unmatched locations like the JCU Orpheus Island Research Station on the Great Barrier Reef. Gain extensive experience in research methods and data and laboratory analysis while honing your data science and communication skills to bring your practise and research to the next level. Prepare for your future career through internships within government agencies and research institutions involved with the stewardship of UNESCO World Heritage listed coral reefs and other extraordinary environments like mangrove forests and the deep sea.

Gain advanced knowledge and experience in the five areas that are most sought after by marine sector employers: marine biology, mathematics/statistics/modelling, environmental science and management, marine and microbial ecology, and cross-disciplinary studies. Enhance your research capabilities with the advanced research skills embedded in all subjects of the degree. Pursue your passion for discovery through the Master of Marine Biology’s Research major or gain valuable hands-on experience during a three-month workplace internship with one of JCU’s leading industry or government partners.

Go deeper into the areas of marine biology that spark your passion as you explore topics such as quantitative marine ecology, conservation biology, fisheries, and the biology, life history and taxonomy of tropical marine organisms. You will study tropical marine systems with an emphasis on coral reefs and surrounding waters, seagrass meadows, mangrove assemblages and the adjacent sandy and rocky shores.



  Course Duration

24 Months

  Tuition Fee

AU$ 43,960



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Course Structure


  • Advances in Marine Biology
  • Evidence and Controversy in Marine Science
  • Professional Employability

Completion of an AQF level 7 bachelor degree in science with a minimum GPA of 5.0 (65%); or equivalent.

Minimum English language proficiency requirements
Applicants of non-English speaking backgrounds must meet the English language proficiency requirements of Band 1 – Schedule II of the JCU Admissions Policy.

6 (no component lower than 6.0)

74 (no component less than 18)

Estimated annual tuition fee: $AUD43,960.00

Course fees are charged per year of full-time study. International course fees are reviewed annually and subject to change.

As a graduate of Australia’s only standalone Master of Marine Biology degree you will have outstanding discipline knowledge of marine biology, transferrable scientific, technical and quantitative skills, and qualities that enable you to contribute to improving marine ecosystems and tropical societies.

During your one-year research project or three-month professional internship you will have opportunities to work with national and international institutions, local environmental industries,  NGOs, and government departments for fisheries, science or environmental management. These opportunities frequently lead to employment or further research through PhD studies post-graduation.

Graduate with confidence from the University rated #1 in Queensland for full-time employment outcomes and post-graduate level starting salary*. Highly regarded by employers, JCU marine biology graduates are sought after within a range of private and public sector organisations, both in Australia and internationally, for technical, research, education, management and policy-related positions. You can go on to employment within a high-profile environmental management and consultancy agency, a government department, a scientific research institute, a commercial venture, or in an education, tourism or even a global environmental media group. Or you may go on to a PhD program at JCU, continuing your studies with the world’s #1 university in Marine Biology.

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