University of Cape Town has a long and proud
tradition as a centre for marine research and for
the training of marine scienctists. Over 100
marine scientists work in the Departments of Botany,
Chemistry, Engineering, Environmental and Geographical Science, Geological Sciences, Oceanography, Surveying and Zoology, many of them
full-time researchers sponsored by outside
is the general term applied to the scientific
study of the sea. Marine Biology, Marine
Geoscience, Physical Oceanography, Marine
Chemistry, Coastal Engineering and Sea Surveying
are all thus specialisations within the general
field of Oceanography. All marine related
activities at UCT are co-ordinated within the School of Marine Science.
The University of Cape Town
does not offer a major degree specialising in
Marine Biology (in fact no such degree is
available in South Africa). It is however
possible to structure an undergraduate curriculum
that emphasises marine studies in the senior
years of a BSc whilst majoring in Zoology, Botany
or Ocean and Atmospheric Science. A senior
half-course in Marine Ecology is also offered at
third or fourth year (Honours) level
within the Zoology curriculum.
A BSc degree at the University
of Cape Town consists of the equivalent of at
least nine full year courses, normally taken over
three years. Students wishing to specialise in
Marine Biology, with an emphasis on the
zoological (or botanical) side must eventually
complete three full courses in Zoology (or
Botany). For details of courses offered see
listings of undergraduate programmes.
Students wishing to pursue a
research career should continue after their BSc
to obtain at least an Honours.
qualification Students wishing to specialise in
Marine Biology are required to choose both their
Honours projects from this field and to have
completed the Marine Ecology half course. The
degree can be awarded specifically in Marine
While the Honours degree
provides a basic training in research methods,
most professionals ultimately proceed to
obtaining qualifications at the MSc or PhD
levels. The Zoology Department at UCT offers two
forms of MSc degree, for which an appropriate BSc
(Hons) degree is a prerequisite.
One year taught courses in Conservation Biology and Applied Marine Science,
terminating in a written examination, and
incorporating a minor dissertation.
A conventional degree taken by
dissertation in which the student undertakes an
original research project under the close
guidance of a suitably qualified superior and is
examined on the basis of a detailed thesis
reporting on his or her work.
The PhD degree is always by
The Zoology Department at UCT
specialises in Marine Biology and can offer
expert supervision in a wide range of marine
topics ranging from taxonomy or coastal ecology
to aquaculture and fisheries biology. See staff list for details of potential supervisors.
Masters and doctoral degree programmes in the
marine sciences are also available in other
disciplines, notably Botany,
Oceanography and Geological Sciences.
All enquiries about Marine
Biological Matters should be referred to:
The Director, Marine Biology
Research Institute, Zoology Department,
University of Cape Town, Rondebosch 7701, South
Telefax: (+27 21) 650 3301
Associate Professor C L
Griffiths, BSc (Hons) Soton PhD Cape Town.
Professor G M Branch, BSc
(Hons) PhD Cape Town FRSSAf. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Professor A C Brown, MSc Rhodes
PhD DSc Cape Town FZS FRES FRSSAf. E-mail:
Associate Professor J J Bolton,
BSc (Hons) PhD Liverpool MI Biol
Professor P A Cook, BSc (Hons)
PhD Wales. E-mail: email@example.com
Professor J G Field, BSc (Hons)
PhD Cape Town FRSSAf. E-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org
M I Lucas, BSc (Hons) PhD Wales.
C Velasquez, MSc Austral de
Chile PhD Cape Town. E-mail: email@example.com
J Griffin, N.Dip. T.S.A.