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Marine Biology and Sustainable Aquaculture

Concentration

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100% Online: Concentration in​ Marine Biology and Sustainable Aquaculture

A concentration in Marine Biology and Sustainable Aquaculture is available to all degree programs except the B.S. in Marine Biology and Sustainable Aquaculture.

Concentration Highlights:

  • Improve your job readiness by learning additional skills necessary in today’s workplace, while working towards your undergraduate degree.
  • Concentrations appear on your transcript and diploma so future employers know what skills you’ve acquired.

To obtain this concentration, complete any four of the following courses:

  • MBAQ 105 Introduction to Oceanography

    This course provides an overview of oceanography – the chemical, biological, geological, and physical characteristics and patterns of oceans throughout the globe. Topics covered will include the physical and chemical properties of seawater, evolution of ocean basins, ocean-atmosphere interactions and cycles, multi-dimensional ocean circulation, and large scale fluctuations such as tides and waves. Additional work will include an investigation into patterns of sedimentation, plankton and primary productivity, and biogeochemical cycles. Specific emphasis will be placed on how ocean behavior and patterns is impacted by and impacts human development and coastal communities around the world.

  • MBAQ 201 Form and Function of Unique Marine Ecosystems

    This course is an examination into the structure and dynamics of various saltwater ecosystems, and builds from basic ecological principles sustaining marine life. Issues covered include an exploration of habitats ranging from estuaries to the rocky intertidal zone and coral reefs to the open ocean. Major ecological communities will be studied, with a particular focus on those supported by kelp and plankton, and include an exploration into unique marine environments such as the deep sea. Additional topics include tropic interactions, energy flow, and community and population organization in select marine habitats. Students will explore the ecological processes controlling the distribution and abundance of marine organisms and community structure, and examine the impact of humans on the marine environment.

  • MBAQ 203 Global Diversity of Freshwater and Marine Resources Used in Sustainable Harvest

    This course will provide an overview of the sustainably harvestable resources found in both aquatic and marine ecosystems. With an underpinning on the contemporary approaches toward habitat and population management, students will learn about capture and growth fisheries and aquaculture, emphasizing the contribution of these to the global food supply. Topics covered will include production methods, environmental and ecological impacts, best practice in growth, capture, and processing, and an overview of marketing of fisheries resources. Additional work will explore the impact of human populations on resource availability on health, as well as major issues connecting resource extraction and acquisition to environmental degradation. All work will build from basic ecological concepts covered in other coursework and be placed in the context of effective long-term management practices.

  • MBAQ 301 Sustainable Aquaculture Techniques I: Growing Shellfish and Finfish

    This course covers the theory and practice of aquaculture techniques used in growing shellfish and finfish in both freshwater and marine habitats. Topics covered will include species identification, habitat creation, reproduction, hatchery and nursery operation, and growth promotion. Additionally, students will learn how to manage the health of aquaculture organisms, harvesting principles and techniques, processing procedures, and identifying appropriate markets for sale. Discussions will be based on the biological, chemical, and economic aspects of aquaculture with a strong emphasis on sustainability, underscoring techniques which minimize environmental impact while maximizing human and animal welfare. Students will assess best practices in the industry which meet sustainability goals.

  • MBAQ 303 Sustainable Aquaculture Techniques II: Crustaceans and Pathobiology

    This course covers the theory and practice of aquaculture techniques used in growing crustaceans and algae in both freshwater and marine habitats, as well as the mechanisms and causes of disease in aquaculture organisms. Topics covered will include species identification, habitat creation, reproduction, hatchery and nursery operation, and growth promotion in shrimp, prawns, crayfish, crabs, lobsters, brine shrimp, kelp, and other assorted seaweeds. Additionally, students will learn how to manage the health of these organisms, harvesting principles and techniques, processing procedures, and identifying appropriate markets for sale. Discussions will be focused on the pathobiology of organisms, with topics including cell death, inflammation, infection, metabolic disorders, and neoplasis across all species targeted in the aquaculture industry, as well as practices and techniques to control disease while maintaining a focus on global sustainability.

  • MBAQ 307 Ichthyology and Fish Health

    This course is an overview of freshwater and marine fishes, their diversity, behavior, and health. Students will learn about the evolution, morphology, physiology, and life history of the global diversity of fishes, with an emphasis on integrating knowledge of fish anatomy and physiology in relation to their survival and wellbeing. Major diseases of captive-raised and farmed fish, including pathogenic control measures will be presented. Additionally, this course will explore the relationship between host, pathogen, and the environment, and explore methods for disease diagnosis and management for fish, including basic biosecurity protocols.

  • MBAQ 310 Marine Mammal and Seabird Biology

    This course will provide students with an in-depth exploration into the identification, evolution, anatomy & physiology, population biology, behavior, and ecology of marine mammals and seabirds. We will explore the breadth and evolutionary history of all marine mammals and seabirds, with particular emphasis on what makes each family and species unique. Students will become acquainted with the primary literature in this field, and refine critical thinking and public speaking through in-depth projects. Multiple research projects will be pursued throughout the course across a wide range of topics related to the biology and ecology of these species, with a particular focus on conservation and ecology. In the pursuit of these projects, students will learn of the many sampling techniques used from land and sea platforms, and discuss how their data impacts the health and survival of these important organisms.

  • MBAQ 315 Diversity of Marine and Aquatic Vegetation

    This course will provide students with an in-depth exploration into the marine and aquatic photosynthetic organisms, including their identification, classification, and phylogenic relationships. Topics will explore the ecology, diversity, and biogeography of algae and plants found in a variety of habitats throughout the globe. Specific work will focus on the propagation, reproduction, and survival of micro- and macroscopic plants, as well as the interaction between humans and vegetative communities. Students will become familiar with the basic sampling techniques used to sample aquatic and marine vegetation. Research projects will be pursued throughout the course across a wide range of topics related to the biology and ecology of these species, with a particular focus on their conservation and ecology.

  • MBAQ 401 Field Research in Marine Biology and Aquaculture

    This course is focused on providing a broad spectrum of field-based research skills across marine biology and aquaculture. The theme, topics, and suite of skills will vary depending on when it is offered, but will rotate when offered across biogeographic areas such as tropical, temperate, and coldwater areas, as well as across differing salinity habitats ranging from marine to freshwater, as well as brackish water and saltmarsh habitats, lakes, rivers, bays, and oceans. Students will conduct original research projects examining how organisms interact with their environment, with a particular focus on gaining proficiency in multiple research and assessment methods of aquatic and marine organisms. Students will use the skills developed in this course to plan and design their capstone research projects.