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Cursus: GEO4-1451
Introduction to Marine Sciences
Cursus informatie
Studiepunten (ECTS)7,5
Categorie / NiveauM (Master)
CursustypeCursorisch onderwijs
Aangeboden doorFaculteit Geowetenschappen; Graduate School Geowetenschappen; M Earth Sciences;
Contactpersoondr. F. Sangiorgi
VorigeVolgende 1
dr. P.K. Bijl
Overige cursussen docent
dr. A.G. Oude Elferink
Overige cursussen docent
prof. dr. B.G. Ruessink
Overige cursussen docent
Contactpersoon van de cursus
dr. F. Sangiorgi
Overige cursussen docent
dr. E van Sebille
Overige cursussen docent
1  (01-09-2020 t/m 06-11-2020)
TimeslotD: WO-middag, WO-namiddag, Vrijdag
Cursusinschrijving geopendvanaf 02-06-2020 08:00 t/m 28-06-2020 23:59
Inschrijven via OSIRISJa
Inschrijven voor bijvakkersJa
Na-inschrijving geopendvanaf 17-08-2020 08:00 t/m 18-08-2020 23:59
Please note: the information in the course manual is binding.
This course brings all students in the MSc Marine Sciences to the level in Marine Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Earth Sciences, required to successfully participate in thematical courses within the program. The course is also accessible for students in related MSc programs.

After the course you will:
  • Have a basic understanding of food webs, ecological properties and anthropogenic impacts on coastal marine ecosystems (carbon transfer, diversity, connectivity & adaptive capacity);
  • Have a basic insight into biogeochemical processes in the water column and the sea floor and elemental cycling.
  • Have a basic understanding of the dominant balances in the large- and mesoscale ocean circulation
  • Have obtained a basic understanding of the dynamics of waves and tides in coastal regions and of the different spatial and temporal scales associated coastal morphodynamic behaviour.
  • Have gained a basic understanding regarding the application of proxies to reconstruct past ocean conditions.
  • Have gained understanding of the role of public international law in regulating the relations between states, the role of law and policy for the governance of the oceans, the legal regime for marine scientific research and the role of scientific research in the formulation of oceans law and policy.
  • Most crucially, realize which aspects of the Marine Sciences might need extra attention during your MSc trajectory.
In this course students will gain a multidisciplinary insight into the marine sciences. The aim of the course is to reach a knowledge and integration level required to follow other MSc courses in marine biology, physics, chemistry, and earth sciences. Moreover, basic insights into issues related to law and policy of the sea will be gained.

The various disciplines will be integrated using a project theme case study that will be studied from multiple disciplines and will be presented at the end of the course. In groups of ~4-5 students that have different backgrounds, this case study will be treated with a specific research question formulated by the students. Results will be reported in written communication and will be presented in an oral presentation at the end of the course. Within this project you will work on your problem-solving skills, and skills regarding leadership, ability to work in a team, to take initiative in organizing progress and flexibility/adaptability.

The first days of the course will encompass a multidisciplinary introduction, and aspects of oceans law and policy. This is followed by two weeks of physics, followed by chemistry, biology, and finally paleoceanography. Individual thematic blocks of two weeks will yield lectures, (computer) practicals offered on Wednesday afternoon and Friday, and an assignment that will be marked. 

Typically, every week will have about 10 contact hours, of which 4-5 hours of interactive lectures and 5-6 hours of exercises, discussions and practicals to work on your reporting and analytical/quantitative skills. Depending on your background, some themes will be harder to follow than others. For the new themes, you will probably need to invest more time and submit a strong work ethic to keep up. Most themes will include a brief report or exercise that will be graded. About 10 hours will be spent on preparations, the case study and feedback/conversations with instructors.

All individual marks must be at least 5.5. Tests that are marked between 4.0 and 5.5 may be retaken once; grades below 4 are typically not accepted. The final result will be the average of the (sub)-weekly assignments (30%), exam (35%) and the marks for the case studies presented at the end of the course (35%).

Absence for up to two days should be indicated to the specific instructor of that day and the coordinator of the course. For longer periods of absence, contact the coordinator. An extra opportunity for tests will be created in case of sickness or personal circumstances.
Je moet voldoen aan de volgende eisen
  • Toelatingsbeschikking voor de master toegekend
This course requires BSc level knowledge of the ocean regarding at least one of the major themes: Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Earth Sciences.
Voorkennis kan worden opgedaan met
It is recommended that students prepare for this course through studying a general BSc-level Marine Sciences book, such as ‘Oceanography; An Invitation to Marine Sciences’ by Tom Garrison, or ‘Invitation to Oceanography’, by Paul R. Pinet.
Bronnen van zelfstudie
* Donald R. Rothwell and Tim Stephens, The International Law of the Sea, Hart Publishing, 2nd edition 2016. (Also required for the ‘Oceans Law and Policy’; GEO4-1452)
* Blackstone’s International Law Documents, latest edition. (Also required for the ‘Oceans Law and Policy’; GEO4-1452)
Verplicht materiaal
Donald R. Rothwell and Tim Stephens, The International Law of the Sea, Hart Publishing, 2nd edition 2016. (Also required for the ‘Oceans Law and Policy’; GEO4-1452).
Blackstone’s International Law Documents, latest edition. (Also required for the ‘Oceans Law and Policy’; GEO4-1452).

Lectures, Self-study, Literature study (multidisciplinary), written reports and oral presentation.

Voorbereiding bijeenkomsten
some preparation to lecture may be needed in the form of literature reading before the lecture.

Bijdrage aan groepswerk
A section of the course will comprise a literature case study in groups of 4 or 5 (see above).


computer exercises or exercises on paper to get an in-depth insight in the theoretical part

Voorbereiding bijeenkomsten
reading literature, different preparation depending on the teacher and the subject

Bijdrage aan groepswerk
Practicals are usually done individually

Minimum cijfer-

Grading will be done using tests of the individual course components: weekly assessment per topic (30%), the literature case and final presentation (35%) and two central exams (35% in total), including one on Oceans Law and Policy and one on the natural sciences.

Aspecten van academische vorming
Academisch denken, werken en handelen
Bestuderen en analyseren van informatie
Synthetiseren en structureren van informatie
Discussieren, debatteren
Sociaal-contactuele vaardigheden
Gebruiken van informatie- en communicatietechnologie ('computer literacy')
Communicatieve vaardigheden
Samenwerken met anderen, werken in teamverband
Planmatig werken
Organisatorische vaardigheden
Wetenschappelijke context
Numerieke vaardigheden
Materiaal / data analyseren en verwerken
Rapporteren over onderzoek - schriftelijk
Rapporteren over onderzoek - mondeling
Beheersen van methoden en technieken

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