Master's Degree in Marine Ecology

Academic year 2023-24

See the pre-registration, admission and registration deadlines for the 2023-24 academic year for this master's programme.
You can also consult this information for the academic year 2022-23.

New student profile and admission criteria

In line with that which is established in article 16 of Royal Decree 1393/2007 and modified by Royal Decree 861/2010, in order to be admitted into the Master's degree programme in marine ecology, applicants must be in possession of an official university degree, issued by an institution of higher learning from a state within the European Higher Education Area, that allows for holders of the degree to access Master's level studies in that country.

Additionally, holders of degrees from education systems outside of the European Higher Education Area can access the programme without having to validate the degree as long as the university verifies that the degree ensures that the holder has achieved a level of education equivalent to that which is provided by a corresponding official Spanish degree and the degree allows the holder to access postgraduate level studies in the country from which it was issued. Admittance to the programme in this way does not imply the official validation of the degree nor does it make reference to any recognition other than allowing the holder to study in this Master's programme.

This programme is especially designed for students with degrees in biology, marine sciences, or other similar programmes. Given its interdisciplinary nature, graduates from other disciplines within the scope of this Master's degree may also study in the programme.

In accordance with Regulatory Agreement 9386 of 16 March 2010, admission applications for the Master's degree programme in marine ecology will be considered by the programme's academic committee which is made up of the programme director, teaching staff, and the head of studies, and which will take all actions necessary according to current regulations. The academic committee will meet within 15 days of the end of the registration period in order to evaluate the applications according to the established requirements (Royal Decree 1939/2007, modified by Royal Decree 861/2010) and the additional criteria indicated below. If the number of students applying to the programme exceeds the number of seats available, the academic committee will create a waitlist from which applicants will be drawn, in an order based on their accomplishments, to fill seats relinquished by applicants who were admitted first.

Decisions on admitting students after the first semester will always be considered by the body in charge of the Master's programme in accordance with the university's regulatory policies, and such a decision will always initially depend on the availability of seats.

In addition to the corresponding accreditation of having the competences needed for this Master's programme, the following criteria will be taken into account to evaluate the students who wish to be admitted into these studies:

  • Academic transcript of previously completed studies,
  • Other academic and professional achievements related to the undergraduate degree, and
  • A statement of purpose, in which the applicant explains his/her motivation for wanting to participate and what has driven him/her to request a seat in this programme. 

Together, the academic transcript and professional experience will have a weight of no less than 70%. Candidates must present necessary documentation (duly accredited, when appropriate) in accordance with the body responsible for admissions. 

This evaluation will result in an ordered list of students who will be eligible to enrol in the programme.

If applicants have special needs associated with a disability, their admission process will be carried out in accordance with the 24th additional disposition in Organic Law 4/2007 of 12 April, on the inclusion of persons with disabilities in universities. The affirmative action policies that ensure the admittance of these students to the Master's programme will be considered, as long as they meet the conditions outlined in the current regulation.

Academic and professional goals

The academic and professional objectives of this master's programme are to offer students a complete, multidisciplinary education that allows them to:

  • Have an advanced level of knowledge about the parameters and characteristics of the marine environment, and know how to apply this knowledge in specific situations, such as those present in the Mediterranean.
  • Know about the most recent advances in ocean dynamics and apply them to the modelling of deep-ocean and surface circulation systems.
  • Understand the components of planktonic, nektonic, and benthic communities as well as the trophic relationships that exist between them, and use this knowledge to understand the overall metabolism of marine ecosystems.
  • Apply scientific methods and techniques for working in the marine environment, e.g., sampling and the subsequent analysis of samples in the laboratory.
  • Assess the impact of humans on the marine environment: overfishing, pollution, beach reclamation, marinas, and the effects of bioaccumulation on marine biota.
  • Apply criteria for assessing environmental indicators in order to come up with strategies related to environmental management, species conservation, and habitat encroachment.
  • Use statistical tools to handle data that come from the marine environment.
  • Design and run marine ecology projects.

With the advanced education in marine ecology that we provide to students, they will have improved job prospects in the following areas:

  • Basic and applied research in marine studies,
  • Teaching marine studies in schools and universities,
  • Governmental organizations dedicated to the management and conservation of marine resources,
  • Consultants and managers of marine parks and reserves,
  • Consultants and managers of costal infrastructure,
  • Managers of ports and nautical installations,
  • Diving schools,
  • Technicians at private businesses dealing with marine industries,
  • Fishing consultants and managers,
  • Fisherman's associations, and
  • Recreational fishing companies.


Access to other study programmes and career opportunities

The UIB's Master's degree programme in marine ecology allows graduates to be directly admitted into the UIB's doctorate programme of the same name, as well as to other programmes with similar profiles in other national and international universities.

For information on career opportunities, see the section titled Academic and professional goals

Structure of the study programme

The UIB's Master's degree programme in marine ecology consists of 60 ECTS credits. In order to facilitate the development of competences and the congruity of the study programme, subjects are classified as either mandatory or elective; this is in addition to the internship and Master's thesis, both of which are mandatory.

The 60 credits are broken down as follows:

Module 1: Structural

Mandatory subjects provide students with 27 ECTS credits and the fundamental content to have a basic understanding of the state of knowledge and the lines of research currently being carried out in the field of marine ecology. Additionally these courses will equip students with the practical tools they need to undertake professions or research positions in marine ecology.

Module 2: Specific 

Elective subjects provide 15 ECTS credits and offer specific content on various topics so that students can choose between the options that they are most interested in professionally and from a research perspective.

Module 3: Internship and Thesis 

The internship is worth 6 ECTS credits and is mandatory. The objective of the internship is to provide students with training in specific work methodologies that can be used in a project that will become the Master's thesis. The internships take place under the tutelage of a researcher who is part of a research group or who is a professional working in a public or private institution. The internship can be carried out in national or international marine research centres, in public or private organizations, or at the UIB itself.

Completing the Master's thesis gives students 12 ECTS credits, and it involves the development of a research project directed by a PhD-holding researcher. It is to be presented, in a public defence, as a dissertation on the work that was carried out. It should be focused along one of the lines of research in the field of marine ecology, and preferably, it should be related to the internship so as to consolidate efforts and put the methodologies and techniques learned to use.

Modules and subjects in this programme, as well as syllabi, can be found in the subjects section.

Gallery  Photo Gallery

Final Exam

Assessment criteria and exam information can be found in the syllabi available on the subjects page.


Evaluation criteria and exams

An assessment system will be set up for each subject according to the criteria established by each professor and published in their course syllabus.

Assessment criteria and exam information are defined in each courses' syllabus which can be found in the subjects section.

Study programme leadership

Programme director

Dra. Nona Sheila Agawin Romualdo
Biology, UIB.
(34) 971 173176 - 3176