Turks & Caicos Islands

Marine Resource Studies


This academically rigorous program follows a six-day/week schedule. The interdisciplinary curriculum is designed to help students actively discover and understand the complexities of environmental, social, and economic issues in the Turks & Caicos Islands.

Major academic themes include:

  • Marine ecology and conservation
  • Climate change and ocean acidification
  • Approaches to sustainable tourism and fisheries
  • Traditional island livelihoods
  • Coral health and resilience
  • Marine protected areas
  • Environmental education


On the Marine Resource Studies program, you will take three 4-credit disciplinary courses and a 4-credit capstone Directed Research course. Courses are participatory in nature and are designed to foster inquiry and active learning. Each course combines lectures, field exercises, assignments, tests, and research. All courses are taught in English.

Click on each course to view a description and download the syllabus

SFS 3020 Environmental Policy and Socioeconomic Values 4 credits
SFS 3730 Tropical Marine Ecology 4 credits
SFS 3740 Principles of Resource Management 4 credits
SFS 4910 Directed Research 4 credits

Core Skills

You will gain practical skills in the field such as: coral health assessment, marine species identification, research design and implementation, acoustic tracking, habitat and biodiversity assessment, quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis, tourism impact assessment methods, research presentation skills, and PADI Open Water Diver certification (offered at an additional cost, upon request).

Field Sites

You will visit different ecosystems and communities which may include coral reefs, mangrove islands, seagrass beds, fishing communities, carbonate platform flats, beaches, marine protected areas, numerous shallow-water snorkeling sites, tropical forests, protected wetlands, and caves on Middle Caicos Island, and the historical tourist hub of Providenciales.

Directed Research

In the Directed Research course, each student completes a field research project under the mentorship of a faculty member – beginning with data collection and analysis and concluding with a research paper and presentation. Project subject areas span ecology, natural resource management, conservation science, environmental ethics, and socioeconomics.

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All program components are subject to change.