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What is Oceanography?

Oceanography is the branch of Earth Science which deals with the study of oceans and seas with specific importance to coastline, estuaries, coastal waters, shelves and the ocean bed. The subject of study covers wide range of topics, including marine organisms and ecosystem dynamics; ocean currents, waves, and geophysical fluid dynamics; plate tectonics and the geology of the sea floor; and fluxes of various chemical substances and physical properties within the ocean and across its boundaries.

What does a Oceanographer do?

A person who studies these aspects of the oceans is known as Oceanographer or Marine Biologist.In other words, Oceanographers are the scientist who studies the ocean. The work of an Oceanographer requires the scientific knowledge of biology, chemistry, physics, geology, geophysics, mathematics and engineering science. This emerging field gives the opportunity to gain scientific knowledge as well employment in various public and private organizations.

Making a career in Oceanography is really challenging. It takes students to the world within our oceans which is yet to be discovered. The student is imparted with the knowledge through theoretical as well as practical classes.

The students during practical classes are assigned to collect samples, conduct surveys, and analyze data using sophisticated equipment in the sea for long hours.

Oceanography Eligibility Criteria

Most of the institutes/universities in India offer postgraduate course in Oceanography or Marine Biology. The minimum educational qualification for this course is a bachelor’s degree in science i.e. B.Sc. either in Zoology / Botany / Chemistry / Fishery Science / Earth Science / Physics / Agriculture / Microbiology / Applied Sciences or in any other equivalent disciplines.

One can also pursue MTech in Oceanography or Marine Biology. The minimum qualification is MSc and sometime a valid GATE score is essential for admission to this program.

MPhil and PhD are also offered by few universities. A postgraduate in the same branch or any equivalent branch can be eligible for pursuing the program. For pursuing PhD one has to qualify either NET or GATE.

Oceanography Career Prospects

Making career in Oceanography is challenging as well as rewarding. There are large employment opportunities for Geographers/ Meteorologists/ Oceanographers in both public and private sectors.

The Union Public Service Commission conducts tests for placements in Central Government Agencies like the Geological Survey of India and the Central Ground water Board.

Similarly, Coal India, Mineral Exploration Authority, Oil & Natural Gas Corporation, Hindustan Zinc and several other organisations engaged in mineral explorations utilize the services of Geologists.

The Defense and Para-military forces also utilize the services of Geologists. A professional in Oceanography can also be absorbed as an Environmental Scientist, Geo-desist, Geographer, Geologist, Geophysicist, Hydrographer, Oceanographer or mining engineer at various organizations in India and abroad.

Oceanography Pay Package

A fresher, after completing post graduation in Oceanography can earn a monthly salary between Rs 8,000 – Rs 12, 000 in public sector. The salary is slightly higher in the private sector. With a Ph.D., one can earn more than Rs 15, 000 per month.

The salary of oceanographers is relatively higher in foreign countries. Countries like US, UK, France offer pay package between $50,000 and $80,000 a year. The salary varies according to the experience and qualifications of the oceanographer.

Oceanography Institutes/Universities

  • Alagappa University
    Course: M.Sc. Oceanography and Coastal Area Studies
    Eligibility: B.Sc. in Zoology/Botany/Chemistry/ Fishery Science / Earth Science/Physics/Agriculture/Microbiology/Applied Sciences or equivalent thereof in the related disciplines.

  • Andhra University
    Course: M.Sc. (Oceanography – Physical and Chemical)
    Eligibility: B.Sc. in Zoology/Botany/Chemistry/ Fishery Science / Earth Science/Physics/Agriculture/Microbiology/Applied Sciences or any other equivalent programs

  • Annamalai University
    Course: M.Sc. (Marine Biology and Oceanography)
    Eligibility: A pass in the B.Sc. Degree examination with Zoology as the main subject with not less than 55% of marks in Part-III.

  • Cochin University of Science and Technology
    Courses Offered:
    M.Sc. Oceanography
    M.Phil. Chemical Oceanography
    M.Tech. Ocean Technology
    M.Sc. Marine Biology

  • Indian Institute of Technology
    Courses Offered:B Tech in Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering
    Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
    Dual Degree in Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering
    M Tech in Ocean Engineering
    Master of Science (MS)

  • Berhampur University
    Course: M.Sc. in Marine Biology/Oceanography
    Eligibility: B.Sc. in Zoology/Botany/Chemistry/ Fishery Science / Earth Science/Physics/Agriculture/Microbiology/Applied Sciences or any other equivalent programs.

  • Goa University
    Course Offered: M.Sc. Marine Science, Ph.D

  • Mangalore University
    Course: M. Sc. in Marine Geology
    Eligibility: BSc
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