Taught course

Applied Aquatic Biology

University of Portsmouth · School of Biological Sciences

Entry requirements

An upper second-class honours degree or equivalent in a relevant subject. Professional experience and other qualifications may be taken into consideration for applicants not meeting this requirement.

English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0.

Months of entry


Course content


Our aquatic ecosystems are under threat. Learn about the issues of pollution, overfishing and climate change from the frontline and take your studies, experience and career to postgraduate level on our MSc Applied Aquatic Biology course.

The University of Portsmouth is the perfect place to dive into aquatic biology, thanks to the temperate marine habitats and internationally protected conservation areas on our doorstep. Our Institute of Marine Sciences is home to some of the best facilities in the country and Portsmouth is ranked third of all post-1992 universities in the UK for research power.

Improve your career opportunities and skills by undertaking independent research, which will lead to exciting jobs in conservation, consultancy, fisheries and research, or teaching and further study.

Course highlights

  • Undertake independent research at the Institute of Marine Sciences, or carry out microbiological work at the University’s Environmental Technology Field Station
  • Rear coldwater species for restocking programmes, or trial fish food at the Sparsholt College Fishery and Aquatics facilities
  • Learn ecosystem function and management, advanced laboratory and field skills, technical writing, data presentation skills in open source software, GIS, toxicology and genomics (environmental DNA)
  • Gain subject matter expertise in mammal, seabird and fish ecology
  • Learn from leading international researchers and outside agencies, including environmental consultancies, government bodies such as the Southern Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority, and industry representatives including CGG
  • Go on field trips to carry out freshwater stream surveys, learn sampling techniques, and take part in a week-long practical in the Mediterranean
Careers and opportunities

Most of our successful applied aquatic biology Master's graduates go on to work in environmental consulting, fisheries and marine conservation.

This course has a strong management aspect. Specific modules such as Fisheries Biology and Management are designed to develop the leadership and governance abilities you'll need for a successful career in living resource management and consultancy.

Graduates of this course have gone onto areas such as:

  • aquatic living resources management
  • marine NGOs
  • private sector consultancy
  • government-based research
  • conservation
  • teaching
  • further study or academic research
  • scientific journalism

Fees and funding


Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MSc
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Admissions Team
+44 (0)23 9284 5566