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University of Gothenburg
MAR-BIO studenter
Photo: Cajsa-Malin Sandblom

More information about MAR-BIO

Here you will find topics, such as programme description, recommended courses, after the edcuation, degree, how to apply and courses on offer. You can also download the programme syllabus.

The MAR-BIO program is a 2 year programme of 120 Credits. The programme will start with one mandatory hybrid course of 15 Credits, jointly taught by the four Nordic universities. This mandatory introductory course will include three, one week sections where all students gather at one of the Nordic partner Universities for an intensive campus course. The students will be registered at the Consortium University of their respective admission and the successful completion of the Programme leads to a double/multiple degree, i.e. separate degree certificates from each Consortium University where the student has studied. The student should apply for the degree at least at two Consortium Universities for the Nordic Master.

Thereafter the students are free to choose courses (5-30 credits) for the rest of the first year from a “smorgasbord” of relevant course offered by the Nordic partner Universities as well as by Chalmers and UNE.

The second year of the MAR-BIO program must be taken as an individual research project course - the degree project. Joint seminar series and shared activities will be planned throughout the program to help the students communicate and create group cohesion. This will facilitate their academic integration and identify the added value of being part of a unique, international, interdisciplinary Masters programme.

The degree project, of 60 credits, should be conducted at one of the Consortium Universities or at one, to the Consortium University associated partner from industry, authorities or public body. The local master thesis rules and procedures of the chosen university will apply. In preparation for the degree project all students must have taken a relevant methodology course, either during their bachelor or during the first year of the MAR-BIO programme.

After successful completion of the Programme, students shall be awarded Master Degrees from at least two of the Consortium Universities where they have been admitted. The Consortium Universities will each issue a degree certificate (including a diploma supplement). A diploma for the Nordic Master will accompany these student degree certificates.

A requirement for a Nordic Master’s program is a mobility of at least 30 ECTs for all students. This will be fulfilled by course work at one or more of the partner universities that is not the university where the students registered to the program and will be assured through the establishment of an individual study plan (ISP) for each student.

The student have the possibility to structure the program in a natural science profile, a social science profile, or a mix, based on the elective courses chosen during the first year. An ISP will be established, in communication between the student and a study counsellor. This is to support and guide each individual student in their course choices and to ensure that the student fulfil the requirements for a degree from two or more of the Consortium Universities.

As the MAR-BIO program is interdisciplinary in its character, individual study plans crossing over between natural sciences and social sciences will be encouraged. However, the students are also free to choose course profiles focusing mainly on the natural sciences or the social sciences.

During the mandatory course study counsellors will together with the student set up the ISP for each student to support each student’s unique course choices in line with their interests and the courses prerequisites. The ISP will also ensure that the 30 ECTS mobility requirement will be fulfilled. There are 70 courses included in the MAR-BIO “smorgasbord”.

The courses are placed at all different positions of the academic year and there are at least 15 recommended courses from each University. Please see the list (that are continuously updated) of all courses, with links to course plans, at the MAR-BIO web page (

The MAR-BIO program will educate the next generation professionals with knowledge and skills in production and utilization of marine bio-resources. Knowledge of modern transdisciplinary methods to implement the FAO conventions on responsible fisheries and the ecosystems approach to aquaculture are essential for future ocean professionals.

The program will develop new networking and partnership opportunities between academic institutions and seafood trade, product, and marketing institutions for MAR-BIO students.

The four partner universities have extended networks with relevant stakeholders in the private sector, management authorities, and higher education worldwide. This will ensure good contacts and build student networks for future job opportunities.

MAR-BIO students will have the possibility to apply for PhD positions at all partner universities. In addition, the MAR-BIO consortium has established a collaboration with a leading American marine university, University of New England (UNE) in Maine, USA where student and teacher mobility will be offered between MAR-BIO and UNE.

Many employers within the area of production and utilization of marine bio-resources require international collaboration, therefor the mandatory mobility between the four Nordic Universities as well as ample possibilities for other mobility is a valuable qualification for future employments.

The master’s program in Sustainable Production and Utilisation of Marine Bio-resources is a program at the advanced level and is intended as a continuation of a Bachelor degree (180 credits) in natural science, social science or arts.

There is one mandatory course (10 credits) needed for the degree and 60 credits should be in the form of a degree project at the advanced level. Of the remaining 50 credits of elective courses to be included in the degree, at most 30 credits can be at the basic level. The programme leads to a Degree of Master of Science with a major in Sustainable Production and Utilisation of Marine Bioresources.

To apply for the master’s program in Sustainable Production and Utilisation of Marine Bio-resources, please go to any of the following admission sites:

  • University of Gothenburg:

  • Nord University, Bodø: applicants from the Nordic countries read here; applicants from non-Nordic countries read here; read more about admission requirements here.

  • Holar University: Please contact the Division for Graduate Studies by email,

  • University of Akureyri: We accept application all year around, but from March - June our online application system is available here.
    Before/after that time, please to contact the office manager or the study counselor

The Programme applies separate admission rounds at each Consortium University according to national and local requirements. All applications passing the requirements will be sent to the program committee together with the letter of intent for discussion and suggestions on students to be admitted. Admission of students will thereafter be decided by each Consortium University. Student complaints pertaining to admission decisions are handled by each Consortium University according to national and local rules and procedures.

The Programme follows the local tuition fee policy of each Consortium University. Student Union fees are charged according to the regular procedures of each Consortium University.

When applicable, students will pay tuition fees, student union or registration fees, directly to the universities involved in their study track according to the universities’ regulations. Total fees charged will vary accordingly. Under no circumstances shall a student be charged double fees for any part of the Programme.

The MAR-BIO programme have Erasmus agreements between all Consortium Universities that are open for all Programme students to apply.

Read more about Erasmus.
Read more about Erasmus application and selection.
Read more about Erasmus application process.

Furthermore there will be possibilities to apply for mobility grants specifically for the three sections of intensive campus courses during the mandatory course.

The application route for the individual courses, which are part of the master's programme, are according to the national and local rules of the Consortium University that offers the course:

University of Gothenburg
ARK174 Planning and Design for Sustainable Development in a Local Context,

Autumn period 1:
MAR410 Changes in the Oceans, historical trends and anthropogenic influence, Planning and Design for Sustainable Development in a Local Context, An introduction to ecophysiology - plants and animals,
ES2614 Resource efficiency - energy, material flows and ecosystem services,
MAR440 Marine project - From idea to action,
GMO615 Corporate Social Responsibility in Event and Tourism,
MAR461 The sea and society relationship; historical perspectives, present status and future challenges.

Autumn period 2:
BIO484 Comparative Physiology of Marine Animals including Applications for Aquaculture,
ES2611 Environmental management systems,
MAR462 Bluegreen economy and sustainable use of marine resources, BIO283 Conservation ecology in water,
ES2616 Advanced Environmental Methodology.

Spring period 1:
BIO560 Animal ecophysiology from a climate perspective,
BIO435 Ecological Toxicology: Physiology,
BIO458 Primary Producers of the Sea,
ES2610 Applied environmental law,
MAR210 Biogeochemical cycles in the sea,
MAR460 European Marine Directives and Policies - an Interdisciplinary Perspective.

Spring period 2:
BIO566 Stream Ecology and Fish Conservation,
BIO266 Marine Biodiversity,
BIO430 Ecological Toxicology: Ecology,
BIO451 Experimental marine ecology,
ES2423 Sustainable development: A case study approach,
MAR450 Chemical Dynamics in the Sea,
HRS530 Maritime Environmental Law

University of Akureyri
Fisheries in Iceland
Fish stock assessment
Quantitative research methods

Fisheries biology
Global fisheries and seafood
Fish as food
Processing technology
Environmental governance in the Arctic
Environmental law and biodiversity
Law of the sea
Qualitative research methods

Holar University
Autumn courses:
FOV5208180, Fish and Water
KOH5306180, Fish Reproduction
DOA1712120 Development of aquaculture.
TAB1310120 Topics in Aquatic Biology,
RAB1530120 Research project in Aquatic Biology,
LAB1410120 Literature study in Aquatic Biology,
GSA1102120 Graduate seminar in Aquatic biology,
ÞVF3106120 Evolutionary Ecology,
RAD1602 Conference Participation,
AFV3106120 Behavioural Ecology,
DEL1610120 Developmental Biology of Fishes,
MSR1310120 Methods of scientific research
STA1306180 Statistics using R
MRF1310180 Metabolic rate in fishes - theory and practice

LAB1410120 Literature study in Aquatic Biology
GSA1102120 Graduate seminar in Aquatic biology
ÞVF3106120 Evolutionary Ecology
RAD1602 Conference Participation
AFV3106120 Behavioural Ecology
DEL1610120 Developmental Biology of Fishes
MSR1310120 Methods of scientific research
STA1306180 Statistics using R
TAB1310120 Topics in Aquatic Biology
MRF1310180 Metabolic rate in fishes - theory and practice RAB1510120 Research project in Aquatic Biology

Nord University Bodø
BI300F Scientific Communication and Research methods
BI317F Evolutionary Genetics
BIO5001 Fish Physiology
ØKO5021 Environmental pollution and ecotoxicology
BIO5005 - Aquaculture production and environmental impacts

AK310F Aquatic Animal Health
AK320F Aquaculture Nutrition
AK322F Fish quality and food safety
BI311F Aquatic Genomic and Bioinformatics
BI312F Biophysical interactions
BI313F Ecosystem Resilience
BI322F RNA Biology
DR443F Principles in Animal Experimentation

Spring and Autumn:
BI307F Individual Curriculum
BI308F Individual Curriculum
PRA2005 Work Placement in the aquaculture industry
BIO5004 Research seminars in Bioscience

University of New England
MAR-366/566 Advanced Oceanography,
MAR 354: Ecological Aquaculture,
MAR 325 Marine Science Speaker Series,
MAR568 Advanced Oceanography 2: Physics and Chemistry,
MAR 423 Marine Mammal Policy, Principles and Practices of Ecological Aquaculture

MAR-BIO studenter and teachers
Photo: Cajsa-Malin Sandblom