alyssamarie00
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Does anyone in this forum take any of the marine biology courses?? If so please could you give me any tips on how to be a successful applicant and tell me what the courses are like?? Thank you very much, I am currently about to start sixth form but I'd like to have a solid idea of where I want to go with my studies!


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artful_lounger
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Take Bio and some (AS at least) Chem; this is what the foundation year students take (plus maths). You can get away without maths tho because there's a route through for people with GCSE maths only, iirc (although if you got a low B or C you should prob take AS maths). Geology and/or Geography seem popular; the latter in particular is probably useful for helping you get used to writing "technical" essays (or economics maybe).

With the program, there is a fair amount of field and labwork (especially compared to other unis); particularly the former. Get used to walking around places, and learn to swim, if you can't already. Scuba certification isn't required for anything but is nice to have and relevant (and you MY have opportunities to make use of it :P). You'll share a lot of modules with the oceanography students, and a few with the geology/geophysics ones; typically by third year you're more or less entirely based at NOC and rarely go to the main campus (first and a fair amount of the lecture stuff in second year are mainly based on the main campus tho, so you will still meet other non-SOES people :P )

With regards to application, just get decent grades, and write a reasonable PS; if you can do some science as extracurricular stuff, this helps a lot (or if you're in IB, try a nd do your group 4 project in a related area) as it demonstrates a commitment to the course beyond the minimum of "I have to go to school and I'm expected to go to uni". The scuba mentioned above also can help show this. Also, not sure if he's still the admissions tutor, but the guy who was ad tutor when we were going in from foundation was pretty disparaging about marine mammals xD Talk about plankton and primary production, they love that

That said, if you think plankton are super boring (which I mean, they are a little, but in context theyr'e interesting and relevant to everything in the marine environment) you prob should consider Zoology instead of marine bio :P marine bio is very much an ecosystem/environment focused course; you'll learn about the biology of specific species (vert and invert) but a lot of what you'll do will be cosidering plankton, primary production, biogeochemical cycles, the effects of currents/marine geology on distrbution of nutrients in the nutrient cycle and so on. If organismal biology, particularly larger animals and such are your thing, then Zoology supplemented by a couple SOES modules in first/second year is probably a better bet.
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alyssamarie00
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Thank you so much!!! That was really really helpful! I definitely have a better idea now ?
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matthias97
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I'm currently second year Geology student, but can help give you a good impression of the first years course as well as life at NOCS. In the first year you'll be enrolled in 10 modules, with 4 compulsory in both semesters and two optionals (however mathematics is a compulsory optional and falls within semester 1.) In the first semester you'll be bunched with students from all of the SOES degree programs (which includes; Geologists,Geophysicists,Oceanographers and as well as fellow Marine biologists) where you'll be enrolled in modules like Maths, Ocean biochemistry and Earth and Ocean systems. The modules involve a variety of sciences like Physics, Mathematics, Chemistry, Geography(/Geology) and Biology. Having at least a good GCSE understanding of all these subjects would be recommended, with A-level's presumably in at least 2 from the list. Beyond semester 1 you'll begin to transition to course specific modules with smaller classes consisting of your course mates along with a few people who happen to have chosen it as an optional module.

In terms of campuses in the first year you'll spend more time at Highfield than at NOCS from personal experience. However with year 2 and beyond the course becomes more centralized at the NOCS campus. NOCS is the faculty campus for the Earth Sciences dept. And is definitively one of the best facilities in the Europe to study. I'm not entirely 100% on what specifically you'll be studying. But any lab sessions, marine biology specific lectures, tutor sessions and marine trips will be based here. The building is also shared with various governmental agencies so you'll never be far from help.

I hope that helped. Best of luck.
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alyssamarie00
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(Original post by matthias97)
I'm currently second year Geology student, but can help give you a good impression of the first years course as well as life at NOCS. In the first year you'll be enrolled in 10 modules, with 4 compulsory in both semesters and two optionals (however mathematics is a compulsory optional and falls within semester 1.) In the first semester you'll be bunched with students from all of the SOES degree programs (which includes; Geologists,Geophysicists,Oceanographers and as well as fellow Marine biologists) where you'll be enrolled in modules like Maths, Ocean biochemistry and Earth and Ocean systems. The modules involve a variety of sciences like Physics, Mathematics, Chemistry, Geography(/Geology) and Biology. Having at least a good GCSE understanding of all these subjects would be recommended, with A-level's presumably in at least 2 from the list. Beyond semester 1 you'll begin to transition to course specific modules with smaller classes consisting of your course mates along with a few people who happen to have chosen it as an optional module.

In terms of campuses in the first year you'll spend more time at Highfield than at NOCS from personal experience. However with year 2 and beyond the course becomes more centralized at the NOCS campus. NOCS is the faculty campus for the Earth Sciences dept. And is definitively one of the best facilities in the Europe to study. I'm not entirely 100% on what specifically you'll be studying. But any lab sessions, marine biology specific lectures, tutor sessions and marine trips will be based here. The building is also shared with various governmental agencies so you'll never be far from help.

I hope that helped. Best of luck.
Could you tell me what Geology is like? I am also interested in that?


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matthias97
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(Original post by alyssamarie00)
Could you tell me what Geology is like? I am also interested in that?


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Yeah sure, There is quite a fair amount of time based in NOCS labs doing hands on learning. The first year course taught us mineralogy in the first semester. Followed by map working and paleontology in the second. The trip's consisted of a 1 day trip in the first week of term to Lulworth cove. And 2 1 week expeditions to Tenby in SW Wales and Ingleton Yorkshire in March and June. Later trip's include Anglesea, Spain and a 6 week independent mapping project to a place of your choosing (or so i've been led to believe) defo the course if you want to get outside!

feel free to let me know if there's anything else you'd like to know.
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