interdisciplinary Master School of Marine Sciences (iMSMS)

Interdisciplinary Studies

Integrated Marine Science Education

The ocean covers about 71% of the Earth's surface, hosts the largest ecosystem on our planet, affects the climate and contributes fundamentally to the economic and cultural well-being of humanity. Its planetary importance, the urgency of its protection and of its sustainable use was adopted in the sustainability goals of the UN Agenda 2030 (SDG 14) in 2015. Finding solutions for a more sustainable human-ocean interaction requires collaboration beyond disciplinary boundaries and societal sectors. It requires agents of change who embody sound disciplinary expertise, holistic understanding, systems thinking and cross-disciplinary communication and collaboration competencies.

At Kiel University, the marine sciences form a research focus that finds international recognition for its interdisciplinary work and versatile networking with partner institutions. The interdisciplinary Master School of Marine Sciences (iMSMS) aims at promoting this interdisciplinary focus at the (Master) student level. Together with all Faculties of Kiel University, with associated institutes such as GEOMAR Helmholtz Center for Ocean Research Kiel, the Research and Technology Center West Coast (FTZ Büsum), the Kiel Marine Science priority research area (KMS), and the Future Ocean Network the iMSMS provides a growing number of opened elective modules (Integrated Marine Science Education catalogue) to foster ocean literacy, interdisciplinary learning and competence development.

The iMSMS welcomes students of all programs enrolled at CAU (mainly at the master's level) to learn about fundamental and current marine and environmental research topics from the perspectives of the natural and social sciences, economics, informatics, ethics, theology and law. In the opened elective modules you will gain insight to current findings, research approaches, and methods in ocean, environmental, and sustainability science; you will get to know the perspectives of different disciplines within these fields of research and you will be able to contribute and expand your own expertise in the discourse.


The ECTS gained in the framework of the iMSMS program can be accredited in the electives section of your curriculum. Please consult your respective examination office or studies coordinator in advance. Unfortunately, Bachelor students are not eligible to gain ECTS in most of the offered (MSc/MA) modules. Nevertheless, they are welcome to join as guests!
Your successful participation in the Integrated Marine Science Education offers can be certified if you are registered and submit the performance report with your passed modules issued by the examination office. There is no consecutive order in which the offered modules should be taken.


Please find the Integrated Marine Science Education Catalogue here.