School of Biological and Marine Sciences

MSc Sustainable Aquaculture Systems

Aquaculture is now recognised as the fastest growth sector of agribusiness on a global scale – learn about this growing industry through our multidisciplinary approach, which places emphasis on sustainable use of aquatic and marine resources for commercial exploitation for food and products. You’ll discover the scientific rationale for improving aquatic animal health, production and reducing environmental impact and address the socio-economic factors.

Key features

  • Develop an appreciation for the growing aquaculture industry within a sustainable agenda for meeting the needs of culturing fish, crustacean, mollusc, aquatic plants and invertebrates for their products. 
  • Choose specialised modules and draw on the expertise of research active staff with proven track records of teaching and national as well as international recognition in their fields.
  • Seize the opportunity to research an aspect of aquaculture.
  • Undertake a variety of projects and technical training with our contemporary facilities such as wet labs/aquaria, nutrition and feed analytical suites as well as teaching laboratories, molecular biology and an electron microscopy centre.
  • Learn from internationally recognised scientists and personnel from Plymouth University and the National Lobster Hatchery.
  • Gain access to expertise from leaders in industry and commerce in a variety of aquaculture systems, advancing your technical and scientific knowledge.
  • Benefit from our strong relationships with government agencies, commercial enterprising and advisory organisations.
  • Join our well established postgraduate environment where PhD students interact and engage in related specialised areas to foster a sound academic forum for sharing ideas and technical knowledge.
  • Graduate opportunities include various career paths within the aquaculture industry as well as associated fields relating to fish and shellfish health, welfare and research. Previous graduates have progressed into careers in these fields or PhD programmes in the UK, Europe, Asia and Africa.

Course details

  • Programme overview
  • You’ll learn about the scale and nature of the global industry and the challenges required to develop sustainable solutions. The programme reflects key aspects of fish, shellfish and algae production relating to modern aquaculture practices with emphasis on nutrition, feed management, health, welfare and sustainable technology. It also incorporates the socio-economic and geo-political developments in this expanding area as well as marketing and enterprise. Topics include: fish nutrition, feed technology, fish and shellfish health management, disease prevention and genetic improvement of stock for aquaculture; management of fish production, ornamental fish culture and global demand for aquatic trades in captive fish species; environmental and legislative regulations in different countries and the problems of aquaculture expansion in rural areas; economics of the marine environment; seafood processing; and a research project leading to your dissertation.

    Core modules
    • BIO504 Health and Production in Aquaculture

      This module will address the biological, chemical and physical factors underpinning the health of organisms (including algae, invertebrates and fish) reared in freshwater and saltwater. The curriculum will include an evaluation of sustainable approaches towards enhancing health and production levels through the use of conventional and novel approaches. Developments in disease management, genetic improvement, nutrition and water quality optimisation will be included.

    • BIO505 Research Project

      Aspects of animal management will be studied encompassing the relationships between ethological concepts and techniques, learning, training, and enrichment.

    • BIO5125 Sustainable Use of Resources in Biological Systems

      This module provides a framework for the analysis of resource utilisation and management in biological systems. Students will study example systems appropriate to their programme of study to allow them to evaluate the extent to which resources are used sustainably

    • BIO5131 Postgraduate Research Skills & Methods

      The module provides the research- and communication-related skills that biology postgraduates require to carry out an original research project at the forefront of their academic discipline. Emphasis is given to the philosophy, design, ethics and management of research, effective communication to a range of audiences, and advice on career management and presentation skills involved in job applications and interviews.

    • BIO5208 Contemporary Issues in Aquaculture

      This module will address the key conceptual issues in aquaculture towards promotion of sustainable solutions to the key problems and issues facing this industry in the early twenty first century.

    Optional modules
    • BIO5209 Seafood Processing - Current Perspectives

      Several factors influence the quality and sustainable to foods from primary production along the added value chain from the aquatic systems into consumers. In addition to the study of systems and mechanisms, there will be also opportunities to develop creativity, and technical skills necessary to provide solutions for efficient and sustainable production systems.

    • MAR507 Economics of the Marine Environment

      This module will provide students with a clear overview of the problems associated with economic activity in marine environment and the potential solutions to these problems.

    • MAR529 Marine Planning

      This module evaluates the emergence and practice of marine planning in UK waters. It will explore the techniques available for developing marine plans and demonstrate the role which may be played by geographic information systems and other tools. Through lectures, field visits and case studies, it will also develop the learner's knowledge of the marine environment as required for marine planning.

Every postgraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the programme aims, the programme structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest programme structure and may be subject to change:

MSc Sustainable Aquaculture Systems Programme Specification September 2017 3606

The modules shown for this course or programme are those being studied by current students, or expected new modules. Modules are subject to change depending on year of entry.

Entry requirements

UK / EU

For entry to postgraduate level, you should possess a good degree in a relevant subject. You may also be considered if you don’t have recent formal qualifications.

INTERNATIONAL

If you are an overseas applicant you can check the compatibility of your qualifications with the UK equivalent through the UK National Recognition Information Centre (NARIC), who provide an advisory service.

English language requirements.

If your first language is not English then evidence of English proficiency is required. The minimum IELTS score for acceptable English proficiency for entry is normally 6.5. 

For further advice on the appropriateness of overseas qualification and proficiency in the use of English, please contact our International Office.

Fees, costs and funding

New Student 2017 2018
Home/EU Check with School To be confirmed
International Check with School To be confirmed
Part time (Home/EU) Check with School To be confirmed
Part time (International) Check with School To be confirmed
Full time fees shown are per annum. Part time fees shown are per a number of credits. Fees are correct at the time of publication and may be subject to change.

International students

Scholarships are available for international students.

How to apply

Applying for postgraduate taught study

The University aims to make the application procedure as simple and efficient as possible. Our Postgraduate Admissions and Enquiries team are on hand to offer help and can put you in touch with the appropriate faculty if you wish to discuss any programme in detail. If you have a disability and would like further information about the support provided by Plymouth University, please visit our Disability Assist Services website. Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office via our how to apply webpage or email international-admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.

If you would like any further information please contact the Postgraduate and Enquiries team:

Telephone: +44 (0)1752 585858

Email: admissions@plymouth.ac.uk 


Submitting an application

Apply for postgraduate study using our online postgraduate application form.

Alternatively you can download a copy of the application form to be submitted by hand, by post or via email with accompanying attachments.

Additional guidance information can also be downloaded on how to fill in the postgraduate application form.

 

Applying for postgraduate research study

The University aims to make the application procedure as simple and efficient as possible. The Graduate School are available to answer any queries on our postgraduate research degrees.  If  you have a disability and would like further information about the support provided by Plymouth University, please visit our Disability Assist Services website. Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office via international-admissions@plymouth.ac.uk

If you would like any further information please contact the Graduate School:

Telephone: +44 (0)1752 587640

Email: graduateschool@plymouth.ac.uk


Submitting an application

Apply for postgraduate study using our online postgraduate application form.

Alternatively you can download a copy of the application form to be submitted by hand, by post or via email with accompanying attachments.

Additional guidance information can also be downloaded on how to fill in the postgraduate application form.

Discover more about our course

Our MSc programme is unique in its ethos and content for the promotion of aquaculture, based on sound principles adhering to scientific and ethical concepts relating to resource utilisation, animal welfare and human requirements.

You’ll learn about the scale and nature of the global industry through specialised modules and packages.

Learn more about sustainable aquaculture systems

Sustainable aquaculture systems research

We have excellent partnerships with the Plymouth Marine Laboratory (PML) and CEFAS fish disease laboratories in Weymouth, as well as the National Lobster Hatchery in Padstow, Cornwall.

On completion of this masters programme you can apply to study a suitable doctoral programme.

Learn more about our research opportunities.

Student insight

I’m interested in the technologies that can result in a more bio-secure and responsible aquaculture industry that meets sustainable production of fish, shellfish and plants. This course is a good platform for a job in this sector as a marine biologist.

Sam Pountney, MSc Sustainable Aquaculture Systems student.

Career opportunities

You’ll acquire the skills and knowledge required for careers in the commercial and public sectors, within mainly management, technical, scientific and advisory roles relating principally to the aquaculture industry, fisheries and seafood production.

The ever increasing expansion of global aquaculture drives the need for jobs both in the UK and overseas.

People