Studying In the Field
Jacques Cousteau, a name synonymous with Oceanography, has indeed sustained mankind's desire to learn the mysteries of the deep. Oceanography is the study of the seas and oceans and is comprised of five major divisions: geological - study of the ocean floor and features; physical - study of the physical characteristics of ocean water, which includes currents and temperature; chemical - study of the chemistry of ocean waters; marine biology - the study of oceanic animal and plant life; and meteorology - the study of the interaction between the atmosphere and the ocean. Mankind's comprehensive understanding of these five major oceanic divisions is fundamental to our worldwide task of preserving planet Earth.
Graduate programs in Oceanography are offered at both the master's and doctoral levels. Core courses include Biological Oceanography, Geological Oceanography, Marine Chemistry, and Physical Oceanography, which provide the student with a well-rounded knowledge base. Marine studies cover a broad spectrum, ranging from molecular biology to fisheries science. Areas of specialization and course requirements may include the following: Biological Oceanography - Marine Microbiology and Marine Primary Production; Chemical Oceanography - Atmospheric Chemistry, Aquatic Chemistry, and Marine Geochemistry; Physical Oceanography - Introduction to Physical Oceanography and Dynamic Oceanography; and Geological Oceanography - Marine Geochemistry and Aquatic Chemistry. For meteorology studies, specific graduate programs provide cooperative research opportunities through their departments of meteorology. Depending on your area of interest, research multiple programs to determine which program will fit your needs.
Job Opportunities In the Field
Careers in oceanography are available in both the public and private sectors. Many graduates hold research positions in industry, private research institutions, and federal and state laboratories and regulatory agencies. Numerous, exciting research opportunities await the oceanography graduate. Notable research has included: temporary stations in oceans to learn whether humans can live and work underwater for extended periods, drilling of the sea floor, and the incredible expedition of examining the sunken steamship Titanic. Visit the sites of our sponsoring programs for more specific information and to learn about particular programs and areas of focus.