2023 Best Colleges with Marine Biology and Oceanography Degrees in America

Are you passionate about marine life and the ocean? Do you dream of pursuing a career in marine biology or oceanography? Look no further! As we approach 2023, we’ve compiled a list of the best colleges in America for those interested in studying these fields. From breathtaking coastal campuses to cutting-edge research facilities, these schools offer top-notch programs and opportunities for students to dive deep into their interests. Join us as we explore the best colleges with marine biology and oceanography degrees that will prepare you for a fulfilling career working with some of our planet’s most fascinating creatures.

University of Washington

The University of Washington is a world-renowned institution for oceanography and marine biology, boasting some of the most experienced and respected faculty in the field. Located in the scenic Pacific Northwest, the university offers students ample opportunities to get involved in hands-on research and explore the dramatic coastline. The school’s interdisciplinary approach to oceanography and marine biology ensures that students receive a well-rounded education, preparing them for careers in a variety of fields.

Florida Institute of Technology

Florida Institute of Technology is one of the nation’s top marine biology and oceanography programs, according to U.S. News & World Report. The school’s undergraduate program is ranked No. 14 in the country, while its graduate program is ranked No. 11.

The institute offers both a bachelor of science and a master of science in marine biology and oceanography. Its undergraduate program includes coursework in marine ecology, fisheries science, oceanography and marine conservation. Students also have the opportunity to participate in research projects and internships.


The Florida Institute of Technology’s graduate program offers specializations in marine ecology, fisheries science, oceanography and marine conservation. Students have the opportunity to participate in cutting-edge research projects and work with world-renowned faculty members. The institute also offers a Ph.D. program for those interested in pursuing a career in academia or research.

Moss Landing Marine Laboratories

Moss Landing Marine Laboratories (MLML) is a research institute of the California State University system, located in Moss Landing, California. The MLML offers both undergraduate and graduate degrees in marine biology and oceanography, with a focus on hands-on research experience.

The MLML is home to a variety of research facilities, including a kelp forest Ecology Lab, an Estuarine and Coastal Science Center, and a Marine Mammal Research Center. Students at the MLML have the opportunity to work closely with faculty on cutting-edge research projects in these and other areas of marine science.

The MLML is also home to one of the largest fleets of small boats in the country, which students can use for their own research projects or for recreational purposes. In addition to its academic programs, the MLML also offers public education programs and hosts a variety of events throughout the year.

University of California, Santa Cruz

The University of California, Santa Cruz is one of the best colleges for marine biology and oceanography degrees in America. The school is located in Santa Cruz, California, and it is a public research university that is part of the University of California system. The school was founded in 1965, and it has an undergraduate student body of over 17,000 students. The school’s marine biology program is ranked as one of the top programs in the country by US News & World Report. The program offers a BS in Marine Biology and an interdisciplinary minor in Marine Science. The school also offers a PhD program in Ocean Sciences.

The University of California, Santa Cruz has world-class facilities for its students studying marine biology and oceanography. The school has two ocean research laboratories: the Long Marine Laboratory and the Institute of Marine Sciences. These labs are equipped with state-of-the-art research equipment, including underwater robots and remote sensing technology. The university also owns a fleet of research vessels that are used by faculty and students for field work all over the world.

UC Santa Cruz is home to some of the world’s leading experts on marine biology and oceanography. Faculty members conduct groundbreaking research on topics such as climate change, coral reef ecology, fisheries management, and ocean conservation. Students have opportunities to participate in this research through internships, field courses, and study abroad programs. Graduates of UC Santa Cruz’s marine biology program go on to careers in academia, government agencies

University of Hawaii at Manoa

The University of Hawaii at Manoa is located in Oahu, Hawaii and offers a Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology and a Master of Science in Marine Biology. The university has a long tradition of excellence in marine research, and its faculty members are internationally recognized for their work in the field. The university’s marine biology program is one of the oldest and most respected programs in the country, and it provides students with a solid foundation in the study of marine life. In addition to its academic programs, the university offers a number of extracurricular activities for students interested in marine biology, including scuba diving, sailing, and surfing.

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) is a private, non-profit research and higher education facility dedicated to the study of ocean and Earth. Established in 1930, WHOI has been at the forefront of scientific discovery, from the first deep-sea submersible expedition to the mapping of the ocean floor. Today, WHOI’s work focuses on understanding global climate change, ocean circulation and currents, oceanography and marine life, and coastal ecosystems.

As one of the world’s leading institutions for marine science research and education, WHOI offers a unique learning environment where students can gain first-hand experience working alongside some of the most respected scientists in their field. WHOI’s graduate program is consistently ranked among the top oceanography programs in the country.

Located on Cape Cod in Massachusetts, WHOI is surrounded by some of the world’s most pristine coastline and is within easy reach of Boston and New York City. With its close proximity to both urban and natural areas,WHOI provides students with unparalleled opportunities for academic enrichment and real-world experience.


We hope that this article helped you to get a better understanding of the best colleges with marine biology and oceanography degrees in America. With such a wide variety of schools, there’s sure to be one that fits your unique needs. Whether you’re looking for an Ivy League institution or a smaller college close to the ocean, we believe that each school on our list is worth considering when deciding where to pursue a degree in marine biology or oceanography.

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