The Marine Science (MarS) Programme takes advantage of KAUST’s location on the Red Sea, a living laboratory with great potential for exciting science. The program addresses the biology and ecology of the multitude of marine life forms. There is an intentional focus on the local Red Sea system, both as a primary study system and as a system with which general concepts from other marine systems can be compared.
The goal of the Marine Science Programme is to develop an integrated understanding of the Red Sea’s ecosystem as well as marine ecosystems in general, including fundamental biology at the molecular and genomic levels, symbiosis with algae and prokaryotes (Bacteria and Archaea), associated communities of fish and corals and the physical and chemical environment that impacts and shapes them. This understanding could have an impact on global carbon cycling, endangered species and how we manage the harvesting of resources from the Oceans.


The Master’s Degree (M.S.) is awarded upon successful completion of a minimum of 36 credit hours. A minimum GPA of 3.0 must be achieved to graduate. Individual courses require a minimum of a B- for course credit. Students are expected to complete the M.S. degree in three semesters and one summer session.

Course requirements:

  • Mandatory Courses (6 credits)
  • Core Courses (3 credits)
  • Elective Courses and additional Core Courses by approval
  • Research/Capstone Experience (12 - 24 credits dependent on additional courses are taken)
  • Winter Enrichment Programme (completed)

M.S. thesis option and M.S. Non-thesis option for graduation.

PhD positions and visiting student opportunities available here.

Program taught in:

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Last updated December 11, 2018
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Sept. 2019
Fully Funded Scholarship + Monthly Allowance
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Start Date
Sept. 2019
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Sept. 2019

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