Course Description

Course Name

Physical Oceanography

Session: VDNS3122

Hours & Credits

18 Credit Points

Prerequisites & Language Level

MARI 112 and 72 further points from Science Schedule C (including at least one of CHEM 111, CHEM 191, COMO 101, GEOL 112, GEOX 112, MATH 160, MATH 170, PHSI 131, PHSI 132, PHSI 191)

Taught In English

  • There is no language prerequisite for courses at this language level.


An exploration of topical global and local oceanographic, chemical and geological issues important for understanding and managing the marine environment.

Want to understand the critical role of the ocean in shaping our climate and our future? Then this is the paper for you. We focus on giving a solid foundation in the physical oceanic processes that shape our world: from the processes that drive large-scale ocean circulation, which takes years or centuries to traverse the globe, to the geological upheavals that formed the ocean basins, as well as the processes that transport sand, mud and silt around the ocean basins and our coastlines. We also examine the complex processes that lead to the formation of sea ice around Antarctica, which doubles the continent's area every year and plays a critical role in our changing climate system.

Learning OutcomesStudents will improve their skills in data collection, data management, data analysis and modelling, presentation of results, written communication, critical thinking and problem solving and apply these skills to oceanography.

Background: An Invitation to Marine Science, 7th Ed, by Tom S. Garrison
Descriptive Physical Oceanography, Sixth Edition: An Introduction, by Talley and Others, 2011

*Course content subject to change