Biology and Aquaculture, M.Sc.

  • Application Deadline
  • 24 months
  • Tuition
    Tuition (Year)
    Tuition (Year)
  • English (take IELTS)
The Biology and Aquaculture Master's programme is offered at Nord University, Faculty of Biosciences and Aquaculture (FBA). Are you interested in biology and aquaculture? Are you interested in studying the marine environment, both evolutionary adaptations and anthropogenic influences? Do you want to contribute to a more sustainable aquaculture?
  • Overview
  • Programme outline
  • Key facts
  • Admission requirements
  • Fees and funding


The world needs students who can help to ensure sustainable utilization of marine resources, and have knowledge of how the marine environment is affected by climate change. We also need students who can contribute with new knowledge to the aquaculture industry. Students get the opportunity to use advanced molecular techniques to solve relevant biological and ecological challenges. As a master student in biology and aquaculture, you become part of an international research environment, with the possibility of exciting theses in marine ecology, genomics and aquaculture.

The Biology and Aquaculture Master's programme is offered at Nord University, Faculty of Biosciences and Aquaculture (FBA). The master programme is an academic programme and offers three specializations: aquaculture, marine ecology and marine genomic.

Specialization Aquaculture:

Aquaculture - also known as fish or shellfish farming - refers to the breeding, rearing, and harvesting plants and animals in all types of water environments. Aquaculture is probably the fastest growing food producing sector in the world, now accounts for nearly 50 percent of the world's food fish. The specialization in Aquaculture aims to give students a deeper knowledge in selected areas of aquaculture.

Through the choice of topics, you can delve into subjects such as aquaculture nutrition, fish physiology, fish health, quality and food safety. The master thesis are normally within themes like reproduction of fish, nutrition, fish welfare and health, and muscle quality. The practical work can be carried out in the University's research station or in close cooperation with the industry.

The specialization offers both 30 and 60 credits thesis. Selecting a 30-credit thesis, you have the opportunity to take courses in for example economics and management (in Norwegian) at other faculties.

Specialization marine ecology:

Knowledge about factors and mechanisms, which determine the number and distribution of organisms also known as ecology, becomes increasingly important as human activity continues to exploit and affect nature in different ways. Field sampling, controlled experiments, modelling and advanced laboratory analyses are all common research methods in the study of ecology.

As a master student within the field of marine ecology, you can choose among study topics related to benthic animals and plants to understand and predict how climate change and other anthropogenic or natural factors affect marine benthic systems and to apply this knowledge to sustainable ecosystem management.

Another possibility is to study the interactions between marine organisms and their environment on all scales from the cell level to ocean basins, or using molecular biological techniques to analyze how populations are related and adapt to the changing environments.

Specialization marine genomic:

Technological breakthroughs in DNA sequencing has quickly made new issues available and changed practices within biological research. The study provides knowledge on how to collect, analyze and interpret large data sets using bioinformatics.

Genomics is the study of structure and function of the genetic material. The specialization makes it possible to immerse yourself in an exciting theme, selected from a wide range of possible issues.

Relevant disciplines includes marine ecology, evolutionary biology, systematics, ethology and aquaculture. Completion the master makes it possible to work with a variety of biological disciplines within the industry, health, management and research.

Programme Structure

  • Scientific Communication and Research Methods
  • Evolutionary Genetics
  • Laboratory safety master
  • Aquaculture Ecology
  • Specialisation
  • Elective courses

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Full-time duration 24 months
  • Study intensity Full-time
  • Credits
    120 ECTS
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus
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English Language Requirements

You only need to take one of these language tests:

  • Minimum required score: 6

    The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.

    Take IELTS test
  • Minimum required score: 550

    The TOEFL – or Test OF English as a Foreign Language – offers a paper-based test (PBT). The final, overall PBT score ranges between 310 and 677, and is based on an average taken from the three test components (listening, structure, and reading). The writing part of this test is scored separately on a scale of 0-6. Read more about TOEFL (PBT).

  • Minimum required score: 80

    The TOEFL – or Test Of English as a Foreign Language – offers an internet-based test (iBT). The final, overall iBT score ranges between 0 and 120, and includes a scaled average from the four components (reading, listening, speaking, and writing). Read more about TOEFL (iBT).

Academic Requirements

Higher Education Entrance Qualification
  • Applicants must have a Bachelor in biology, aquaculture, ecology, molecular biology, food technology or equivalent. Students must have basic knowledge of mathematics and statistic. Admission assumes a grade average of C or better in the education that forms the basis of admission.
  • Regarding the requirements for scope and content of secondary education, most applicants from Europe meet these through completion of a secondary school certificate, which would provide the grounds for university admission in the home country.
  • Applicants coming from outside Europe may need to demonstrate at least one year of university study in addition to a secondary school certificate. Please consult the GSU-list issued by the Norwegian Agency for Quality Assurance in Education for country-specific requirements.
Language Requirements
  • English basic course from upper secondary school in Norway with mark 2 or better
  • TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) with a minimum score of 550 points on the paper-based test or 80 (20 reading/20 writing/20 speaking/20 listening) points on the Internet-based test
  • IELTS (International English Language Testing System) with a minimum score of 6.0

Tuition Fee Per Year

  • Free International
  • Free EU/EEA
  • No special costs except semester registration fee and syllabus literature.
  • Fees could apply for elective courses, maximum NOK 3000.


StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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