The Department of Oceanography & Coastal Sciences offers Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, and Doctor of Philosophy degrees and supports the expansion of marine-related instruction in other academic departments. Research and instruction in the department is focused on fundamental understanding and practical application of knowledge of the physical, chemical, biological, geological, and meteorological processes that affect those environments usually identified as marine, coastal, or estuarine.
The extensive marshes and estuaries of Louisiana (40 percent of the coastal wetlands in the United States) and the adjacent continental shelf, impacted by natural and anthropogenic activity, serve as a vast natural laboratory for much of the field research conducted by faculty and graduate students. Research activity is carried out not only in Louisiana but also at such regional, national, and international sites as Florida Bay, the Everglades, the Orinoco River delta, and estuaries and coastal waters of Central America, Denmark, France, and China.
Admission to the graduate program in oceanography and coastal sciences requires admission to the Graduate School and a bachelor’s or graduate degree in science or engineering from an accredited institution. Because of the nature of the fields of oceanography and coastal sciences, successful applicants to the program must first be accepted by a faculty member who will serve as their major advisor. Students interested in the department’s program are, therefore, encouraged to contact faculty members who work in the student’s field of interest. A description of all courses offered by the department is included in this catalog. In addition all students are required to have successfully completed differential and integral calculus. If an applicant has not completed these requirements by the time of enrollment in the Department of Oceanography and Coastal Sciences, they will be required to do so during their first year at LSU.