With the increasing pressures on the marine environment, both in the South Pacific region and worldwide, experts in the conservation and management of marine organisms and ecosystems are in demand.

As a world leader in marine conservation, New Zealand is a great place to develop your expertise in the field. Its unique and lengthy coastline is home to numerous marine organisms—from the tiny phytoplankton to the endangered New Zealand sea lion.

Study with Victoria's School of Biological Sciences, a leader in marine biology research. Examine marine conservation issues and practice using examples from New Zealand, Australia, South Pacific and wider Indo-Pacific region, which can be applied worldwide.

Marine Conservation can be studied through two qualifications. The Master of Marine Conservation (MMarCon) is a taught Master's with no thesis component and is the only taught Marine Conservation Master's degree in New Zealand.

Or you can choose to study for the Postgraduate Certificate in Marine Conservation (PGCertMarCon), a shorter qualification for those who want to expand their expertise into a new area of interest.


Postgraduate study at Victoria will help you build valuable relationships and networks with peers, university staff and future colleagues. You'll have opportunities to attend events, workshops, social functions, and seminars.

The Postgraduate Students' Association can give you information and provides a voice for you on campus.

Returning to study

Many students return to university for postgraduate study after several years away. If it's been a while since you've studied, our liaison officers can help you get back into university life.


You'll gain skills and knowledge in a wide range of areas within the conservation and management of marine organisms and ecosystems, in both temperate and tropical climates. You might find work at Crown Research Institutes, private research institutes or with national government agencies managing marine conservation and fisheries.

Other organizations you may work with include regional authorities such as city, regional and district councils, consultancy firms carrying out contract marine biology work or non-government agencies and not-for-profit organizations.


You can look for scholarships based on your level of study, subject area, and background.

If you're from a developing country within the Commonwealth, there are scholarships on the NZAID website you may be eligible for.

Advance your expertise with Ph.D. study

A Ph.D. is the highest academic qualification offered by the School of Biological Sciences. You’ll carry out original and sustained research under supervision from world-class academics.

Usually, entry into Ph.D. study requires an Honours degree or a Master's with a research thesis. If you're thinking of continuing on to Ph.D. study, you can take a research-based, special topics paper as one of your course choices to help you with entry requirements.

As a Ph.D. candidate at Victoria, you’ll also be supported by the Faculty of Graduate Research.

Program taught in:
  • English

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Last updated September 18, 2018
This course is Campus based
Start Date
12 - 24 months
20,875 NZD
for the full programme
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