Marine Pollution

University of the South Pacific

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Marine Pollution

  • Host University

    University of the South Pacific

  • Location

    Suva, Fiji

  • Area of Study

    Environmental Science, Environmental Studies, Marine Biology

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    Any 200-level science course

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credits

    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    This course provides an introduction to the basic science of pollution in the sea. Lectures will cover the principles of assessment and control with particular reference to tropical systems. Classes will also consider case histories from the tropical Pacific and elsewhere. The case histories will be examined as predictors of various types of environmental risk, for example oil spills, sanitary sewage disposal, factory wastes, radioactivity, etc. Students will participate in practical assignments to develop skills in pollution assessment.


    Course Content

    There are weekly Lectures, Practicals and Tutorials. There will be no Practicals or Tutorials the first week. Sign up for one of the Tutorials and one of the Practicals on Moodle.


    The lecture part of the course will begin with an introduction to marine science, proceed to aspects of ecology that are important in assessing marine pollution, use of library and internet sources for scientific information, then to consideration of the major sources and mitigation measures for marine pollutants, environmental impact assessment, and ending with guest speakers.


    Practicals alternate between laboratory and field. The laboratory work is usually the practice and proof of techniques that will later be employed in the field. In the first part of this course, data is collected by the entire class, but reports will be individual, based on the class data. The second part is group work, in which students have the opportunity to do original research. Groups of between four and six will proceed through four phases of the project: proposal, field/lab work, oral report and final written report. The research project may change, depending on enrollment and availability of equipment. In some cases it may be a literature review, without lab or field work.


    The right to participate in field work is earned by thorough preparation and attention to safety. Students may be excluded from field work for inadequate preparation or inattention to safety. There will be occasional tests on lab instructions preceding laboratory work, and students must pass these tests before entering the laboratory or going in the field.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.