The University of West Florida offers a Bachelor of Science in Oceanography/Ocean Studies. This program is administered by the Department of Environmental Studies and is taught primarily online; it is completed after 120 credit hours. This particular program is geared toward non-traditional students, including those deployed offshore or overseas in a military capacity. This program aims to provide these students with basic knowledge in the four main components of oceanography: biological, chemical, geological, and physical oceanography.
Once students are enrolled in the Oceanography program, they must consult with their academic advisor for courses that may satisfy both the general studies requirements and common prerequisites. After completing both general studies and common prerequisites, students must then complete their lower division electives. Then, all Oceanography students must complete the major courses that are required and make up a total of 35 credit hours. These courses are the following: Biological Oceanography, Coastal and Marine Environments, Weather and Climate, and Coral Reefs. Upon completion of the core major requirements, students must then take their upper division electives, which count for a total of 25 credit hours.
This Bachelor of Science in Oceanography/Ocean Studies degree will position graduates for additional studies that will allow them to qualify for a variety of career opportunities. Oceanography and the Marine Sciences are very broad fields with many specialties, and graduate studies or employment in oceanography may require more quantitative courses and hands-on or field experience not offered by this distance-learning degree. Once students have completed additional studies, some of their possible professions may include biological oceanographer, chemical oceanographer, marine geochemist, geological oceanographer, physical oceanographer, marine policy personnel, and coastal zone management.
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
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