The master’s program in Marine Policy (MS) was founded on the idea that the effective application of marine policy requires practitioners, first, to be fluent in the languages and concepts of both the social and natural sciences, and second, to be able to translate those languages to, and for, users of the resource. As a consequence, the design of a student’s program is flexible and adapted to her or his previous background and work experience.
The Master of Science degree in Marine Policy in the School of Marine Sciences is designed to take advantage of the strong interdisciplinary nature of the School. The program is intended for students interested in the application of science and policy. It is intended as a terminal degree but does not rule out continuation to a Ph.D. The course of study is two years.
All students in the program will receive training in the social science aspects of marine resource management, in marine sciences, and in empirical methods. In addition, students will be expected to gain expertise in either living natural resources or coastal zone management. The program offers both a thesis and a non-thesis option.
The School of Marine Sciences also offers a unique, strongly interdisciplinary dual degree program in marine policy and science. The course of study is normally three years. It leads to two master’s degrees: one in Marine Policy and one Marine Biology or Oceanography.
Students are required to complete the requirements for a master’s degree in marine biology or oceanography and the requirements for a marine policy master’s degree. Six hours of each degree can be counted as electives for the other; as a result a total of only 48 hours is required to complete both degrees (rather than the 60 usually required for two completely independent masters degrees). The course requirements for the science degrees are described separately. For the policy degree, students complete 18 hours of social science courses, including 6 hours of required courses, with 6 additional course credits counted from the science degree.