Entry Points (2021)

Course Overview

Marine Science encompasses the study of marine life and environments, how they are formed and evolve, and how they are affected by human activity. Topics covered in this programme include marine biology, earth science, chemistry and experimental physics, mathematics, statistics, oceanography, meteorology, botany, geology and microbiology.

The degree in Marine Science is a four-year degree leading to a BSc (Hons). At the end of the degree, you will have improved your knowledge about the marine environment and will have developed your thinking and practical and personal skills, enabling you to undergo further academic training in a wide variety of scientific disciplines or begin your career. Marine Science is a broad area and the programme aims to help you find what speciality you prefer to study by introducing the subject in a general way at first and allowing you to follow your particular interests later on.

At present, NUI Galway is the only Irish university offering this degree programme and it now has the highest concentration of marine scientists of any institution in Ireland. Research ranges from fundamental understanding of the marine ecosystem to very applied activities involving close co-operation with industry and state agencies. The 3,000 square metre Martin Ryan Marine Science Institute houses most of the teaching and research activity in Marine Sciences at the university. MRI Carna carries out applied research in Carna, County Galway.

Applications and Selections

Who Teaches this Course

Requirements and Assessment

Key Facts

Entry Requirements

Minimum Grade H5 in two subjects and passes in four other subjects at O6/H7 level in the Leaving Certificate, including Irish, English, Mathematics, a laboratory science subject (i.e, Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Physics with Chemistry (joint), Computer Science or Agricultural Science) and any two other subjects recognised for entry purposes.

Additional Requirements


4 years

Next start date

September 2022

A Level Grades (2021)


Average intake


QQI/FET FETAC Entry Routes

4 (More Info)

Closing Date
NFQ level

Mode of study

ECTS weighting




Course code

Course Outline

Marine Science Button






• Chemistry
• Physics
• Biology
• Plus one of following:
· Mathematical Studies
· Mathematics
· Applied Mathematics
· Computer Science


• Fundamentals in Aquatic Plant Science
• Introduction to Ocean Science
• Microbes and the Environment
• Invertebrate Biology
• Vertebrate Zoology
• At least two of the following:
· Molecular and Cellular Biology
· Evolution and the Tree of Life
· Laboratory Skills
• Plus electives


• Plant Resources and Ecosystems
• Ocean Dynamics
• Aquatic Geochemistry
• Microbial Genomics
• Geographic Information Systems and Biostatistics
• Marine Habitat
• Concepts in Population and Community Ecology
• Plus electives


• Marine Science Essay and Presentation
• Field Skills in Marine Science
• Research Project
• Plus electives including:
· Current Topics in Algal Research
· Global Change
· Microbial Ecosystems Services and Systems Biology
· Marine and Coastal Ecology



Further Education

Honours BSc Marine Science graduates can pursue higher degrees in a wide range of related disciplines. Recent examples include PhD projects in Sweden, Austraila and Ireland, with M.Sc. courses taken across Europe.

Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities



Who’s Suited to This Course

Learning Outcomes

Transferable Skills Employers Value

Work Placement

Study Abroad

Erasmus opportunities in Oviedo, Spain. Marine Science students also go to Hong Kong with the HKUST exchange scheme. https://www.nuigalway.ie/studyabroad/

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

€7,408 p.a. 2022/23

Fees: Tuition

€4,268 p.a. 2022/23

Fees: Student Contribution

€3,000 p.a. 2022/23

Fees: Student levy

€140 p.a. 2022/23

Fees: Non EU

€23,140 p.a. 2022/23

EU Fees are comprised of Tuition + Student Contribution Charge + Student Levy** €140.  **Payable by all students and is not covered by SUSI.  Further detail here.

Find out More

Professor Mark Johnson
Programme Director
College of Science
T 353 (0)91 492126 
Twitter: @marinescigalway



What Our Students Say

Alina Madita

Alina Madita Wieczorek |   4th Year Marine Science

I moved from Germany to Galway to study Marine Science as I wanted to study in English and as close to the Atlantic as possible. The first year of the course focused on giving the same background knowledge to all students. During the second and third year I gained in-depth knowledge in many different areas of Marine Science as the course is truly multidisciplinary. I more and more realise now that this is one of the more important if not the most important aspect of my studies in NUI Galway as it enables me to link up topics from different areas such as how ocean physics influence the biology of our oceans. My favourite part of the degree was the research project in year four where the lecturers hand over to you. In this period I picked up many valuable skills, which are of great help to me now. At the moment I am doing a bursary in the Marine Institute. I hope in the future to do research around marine environmental issues and acquire a PhD in this area.


  • Undergraduate Prospectus 2022

    Undergraduate Prospectus 2022 PDF (8.4MB)

  • Quick Guide to Courses 2022

    Quick Guide to Courses 2022 PDF (697 KB)

  • A Level Quick Guide 2022

    A Level Quick Guide 2022 PDF (352 KB)

  • CAO Brochure

    CAO Brochure PDF (1.3 MB)

  • Postgraduate Prospectus 2022

    Postgraduate Prospectus 2022 PDF (14.3MB)

  • QQI / FETAC Pathways Guide

    QQI / FETAC Pathways Guide PDF (45MB)