Study plan

Nordic Master in Sustainable Production and Utilization of Marine Bioresources

Choose study year

Programme description

MAR-BIO is interdisciplinary and combine biology, oceanography, technology sciences (marine, aquaculture and biotechnology) and social sciences (socioeconomics, laws, politics, planning aspects and communication) and methodology.


The students enrolled in the program must take a minimum 30 ECTS at one of the partner universities; University of Gothenburg, University of Akurery or Holar University College.


Depending on the master's thesis and electives, students will gain expertise in:

- marine fish, shellfish, algae biology, civil law, political science, business and economics at the University of Gothenburg

- aquaculture, environmental interactions, marine ecology, genomics and epigenetics at NORD University;

- aquaculture, freshwater biology and fish behavior at Holar College;

- fisheries science, food science, biotechnology, value chains, marketing and municipal planning at the University of Akureyri School of Business and Sciences.

Study model

You have chosen:
Expand all

Course id Course name ECTS Credits
(click to choose)
(click to choose)

Choose specialisation

Choose course

Learning outcomes


After completion of the MAR-BIO programme the candidate:

  • has thorough knowledge of the broader perspective on sustainable production and utilisation of marine bioresources, especially within aquaculture and fisheries in a Nordic perspective.
  • depending on the profile of the master’s thesis, has an understanding of the impact of marine bioresources on coastal communities
  • has thorough knowledge of theories on sustainability and value creation of marine bioresources
  • has a thorough knowledge about scientific theories and methods in the field of marine bioresources.
  • knows the basics of project formulation, design, team-building


After completion of the MAR-BIO programme the candidate can:

  • analyze and relate critically to different sources of information and use these to structure and formulate scholarly arguments.
  • use relevant methods for research and development work in an independent manner
  • carry out an independent, limited research or development project under supervision and in accordance with applicable norms for research ethics
  • present acquired knowledge as well as own analyses and syntheses, both orally and in writing

General competence:

After completion of the MAR-BIO programme the candidate can:

  • • analyze and deal critically with various sources of information and use them to structure and formulate cholarly arguments
  • • evaluate facts from different sources, discuss them and take a stand for the pros and cons with different theories.
  • • communicate academic issues, analyses and conclusions both with specialists and the general public

Admission requirements

Admission requirements are:

• Higher education entrance qualification

• Bachelor's degree (180 ECTS) within bioscience or social science.

• Average grade of C or better (laudabilis) in the Bachelor’s degree.

• A motivation letter must be uploaded to the application portal within the specified deadline.

For applicants outside the Nordic countries, applicants are asked to document proficiency in English language.

Applicants are ranked by:

1. Motivational letter

2. Grades of the Bachelor’s degree

3. An interdisciplinary constellation of the class.

Applicants will be ranked by their motivation letters. The applicant’s motivation for the study, and his/her motivation for the idea of travelling between the partner universities, as well as his/her academic background and future career plans will be emphasized.

Applicants apply to the preferred university. It’s possible to apply to more than one.

General admission and documentation requirements

Career possibilities

Depending on the master's thesis profile, candidates will be well qualified for positions in relevant business sectors such as aquaculture, fisheries, further development and production of marine food, utilization of waste bi-products, biological consultancy, municipal planning, municipal and state management of environment, nature and aquaculture resources, as well as the development of coastal communities.

Further education

Further education will depend on background also from the bachelor's degree. Assuming biological background from bachelor's degree and completed MAR-BIO, the candidate will be able to proceed with a PhD in aquatic biosciences at Nord University, or equivalent PhD degrees at the University of Akureyri and the University of Gothenburg. Candidates with a social science background on their bachelor's degree will,after completing MAR-BIO, also qualify for doctoral degrees at other institutions in Norway or abroad.

Study abroad

The students enrolled in the program will do a minimum of 30 credit exchange to one of the partner universities; University of Gothenburg, University of Akurery or Holar University College.


In addition to the semester fee and syllabus literature, students are expected to have a laptop with microphone and camera. Students must purchase their own laboratory coat for use in courses with laboratory exercises. 

Depending on the corona situation in the Nordic countries in autumn of 2021, students might be able to travel and spend one week in Bodø, one week in Gothenburg and one week in Akureyri / Holar. These expenses are covered by the Nordic Council funds that accompany the master.

In addition, there is a compulsory exchange of at least 30 credits one of the partner universities within MAR-BIO, which results in travel, housing and food expenses. The students can apply for extra grant from the “Norwegian Lånekasse” if norwegian, or from ERASMUS + from the EU system.

Specific arrangements for recognition of prior learning

For programmes taught in English (international programmes): The admission requirements are absolute. Contact the study advisor for information about credit transfer.


For programmes taught in Norwegian: If the applicant does not fulfil the requirements for the Higher Education Entrance Qualification but has experience-based competence relevant to the field of study, he or she may apply for recognition of this competence in order to fulfil the admission.

Examination regulations, assessment and grading

The Norwegian system for grading and assessment using the letter grades A - F, in which A denotes the best/highest grade and F denotes "not passed". Candidates’ work can also be assessed as "passed", "not passed", "approved" and "not approved".

View rules and regulations for examinations

Assessment methods

The program consists of single courses and a 60 ECTS thesis, which is assessed individually. A wide range of examinations and assessment forms will be used: Oral exam, written school exam, home exam, multiple choice, and folder.

The Master's thesis will be assessed with a written assignment with oral adjustment.

Programme evaluation

The programme is evaluated via student questionnaire, yearly course evaluations, as well as by the programme coordinator. The evaluations form a part of the university's quality assurance system.

Qualifications requirements and regulations

ECTS Credits 120 Study level Master's degree (2 years) Teaching language
Faculty of Biosciences and Aquaculture
Course location Bodø