Academic year 2017/2018

MARINE BIOLOGY Degree Program Profile

Basic Information

Qualification awarded

Master Degree in MARINE BIOLOGY

Qualification Type/Level

EHEA First Cycle; EQF Level 6

Number of Years/credits

2 years; 120 ECTS

Mode of Study


*All Degree Programmes are planned and organised for full-time students. It is possible, however (without special arrangements), to proceed through the course of study at one's own rhythm. This makes it possible, if necessary, to accommodate employment or other non-university activities or obligations.

Name of Course Director and other contact information

President of the Degree Course Council:

Department of BIOLOGIA

Internationalization Coordinator (CAI):
Prof. Massimo Dal monte

Language of Teaching


Admission Requirements

Formal Requirements

Italian First cycle qualification (Laurea) or foreign equivalent in the same or related subject area, with possible extra work if required competences are lacking.

Possible assessment prior knowledge and competences

Obligatory entrance exam for orientation purposes (non-selective).

Required knowledge and competences support programmes

Students whose curricula show lacuna may need to take extra first cycle course units before admission.

General Information

Programme Profile

The Degree Programme in Marine Biology completes the education acquired in the first cycle study in Biological Sciences. It has the objective of preparing students with advanced and overall expertise in basic biology and in marine biology, with a deep knowledge of ecological, organismic, cellular and molecular diversity of marine organisms. They will have a solid background in marine biology with a deep knowledge in the methodologies involved in basic and applied research and in the techniques for collection, analysis and interpretation of the data.

Key Learning Outcomes

Graduates in the Marine Biology Programme will be able to demonstrate:
- an essential knowledge on basic biological sciences in perspective of their future professional application;
- an advanced knowledge of biology of marine organisms and in particular of ecological, organismic, cellular, and molecular diversity of marine organisms
- applicative and methodological competences, relevant for the study of marine organisms and ecosystems
- an advanced knowledge in data management with statistical methods
- the ability to operate modern laboratory instrumentation, with some knowledge of the most important acquisition techniques, including data handling
- the ability to work autonomously, assuming also manager roles involving wide responsibility of projects, structures and personal.
- the ability in organizing scientific research and innovation technology
- the ability to consult databases and to adopt innovative technologies and advanced instruments in order to update their own profile

Occupational Profile/s of Graduates

Graduates in the Marine Biology Degree Programme will have high responsibility profiles in activities associated with the development and use of procedures in all the fields of the study of marine organisms, performed within:
- public and private institutions involved in the study of marine and coastal environment
- environmental protection agencies
- managing and professional activities recognized by the National Biologist Order
- university and academic research centers following enrollment in a PhD programme in Marine Biology and Ecology or in other PhD programmes in Biology or other related scientific disciplines

Access to further study

The Laurea Magistrale degree in MARINE BIOLOGY allows the graduate to compete for entry into a Third Cycle programme/doctoral school.

Assessment methods, examination regulations, and grading

Assessment is normally by means of an oral or written examination; in some cases there are intermediate exams during the course; other elements (participation in discussion, written or oral reports, comment of texts etc. ) are foreseen in specific course units and are described in the Course Unit Profiles.
The grading system for the course units consists of 30 possible points, plus 'lode' (cum laude) in case of excellence. Marks are given by the lecturer on the basis of performance as ascertained in a public examination by a board of at least two teachers. Main exam sessions are held in June/July; September; and January; students may resit exams**. Actual grading curves differ in different degree programmes. The University of Pisa provides an ECTS Grading Table, which shows the actual distribution, of examination and final grades among students of each degree programme, in order to facilitate comparison with other grading systems. ---> Link to ECTS Grading Table
An overall mark is given on occasion of the 'Final Exam', when a written research text is presented and discussed. The final overall mark is calculated on the results of the marks obtained in the single course units and the final exam, and is based on 110 possible points, with the possible further mention of honours ("lode" or cum laude).

**The exam sessions are organised in sessions (the dates vary according to the Department and are published in the Department's academic calendar). In each session there are a certain number of 'appelli' [calls], or dates on which the examination for each course unit may be taken. The 'appelli' are fixed by the teacher. The student chooses which of the appelli he or she wishes to respond to. In most cases it is obligatory to sign up before the specified date.

Requirements (regulations) to obtain the qualification

The final exam, to which 48 ECTS credits are allocated, foresees the preparation and discussion of a written text and must show that the candidate has performed an original research in Marine biology in an universitary laboratory or in laboratories of par

Course structure diagram

Available courses, 2017/2018