Coastal Processes Research Group Perranporth beach

The University of Plymouth has an international reputation in providing courses associated with the sea. 

Around 50 marine and maritime courses are taught on its campus or as foundation degree level courses provided by its partners within University of Plymouth's College network, including partnership with the Royal Navy (FOST HM). 

This makes us a provider of one of the widest portfolios of marine and maritime courses in Europe. 

Around 2,600 of the University’s 30,000 registered students choose to study a degree with a marine or maritime theme. The Marine Institute acts as a gateway to the wide range of marine and maritime courses, but individual courses are organised and managed by the University’s faculties and schools.

Students on marine courses at the University of Plymouth have access to the state-of-the-art research laboratories and equipment, particularly in their final year project, in addition to excellent teaching facilities such as a recently refurbished library, modern lecture theatres and extensive computing provision.

Courses are often accredited by the relevant professional body and have a strong hands-on theme; the University is recognised as a leader in experiential learning – fieldwork, for example, is a vital and important component of environmental degrees. 

Away from the city campus, the natural harbour of Plymouth Sound, with its sheltered waters, provides a unique opportunity on our doorstep to study aspects of the sea. 

It also offers unparalleled recreational opportunities for students, who can access the marine environment through our new Marine Station and Mount Batten Watersports Centre.

The city has also constructed one of the largest sports centres outside London, the Life Centre, which includes a 50 metre Olympic standard pool part-funded by the University. 

Plymouth is renowned as a centre for aquatic and marine sports and the Marine Institute supports a range of student and local marine and sporting activities.

Marine-themed courses at the University of Plymouth

Ashfords LLP proudly supports the Marine Prize for final year University of Plymouth students 

The prize is open to University of Plymouth students whose final year research project is within the marine sector and is of relevance to UN Sustainable Development Goal 14 (Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources). Projects also need to demonstrate a tangible impact or benefit to Plymouth and / or other coastal regions.

“I’m delighted that we are able to partner with Ashfords to launch the Ashfords Marine Prize at the University of Plymouth. This is an area where the University and indeed, Plymouth in general are amongst the best in the world. We are rightly proud of the work our students do in this field and it is encouraging to have a local firm supporting and encouraging them in this way.” Professor Kevin Jones

Find out more about the prize

Marine Science BSc students on a fieldtrip to Teignmouth in south Devon


Thanks to a pioneering partnership between the University of Plymouth and the Ocean Giants Trust, a series of scholarships have been awarded to marine biology and conservation undergraduates. Find out more about the partnership.

The Marine Institute has secured funding to support two scholarships to enable current final-year undergraduate students to continue their education at the University via a marine related postgraduate masters level course. Find out more about the scholarships.

Volunteer opportunities

The Marine Institute works in partnership with a number of external organisations who offer volunteer and internship opportunities to students. 

These allow you to gain additional research experience, usually in an overseas environment. 

For more information on current opportunities please visit the volunteer opportunities page.

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