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Postgraduate study at SAMS


Our postgraduates are an integral part of SAMS


Postgraduate students are a vital component of the life and activities at the SAMS. Currently we offer two options for Masters level study, and host approximately 25 PhD students. Staff furthermore act as (co-)supervisors for research students (both MSc and PhD) registered at other universities. While most of our research students study full-time, we also host a number of part-time students who are sometimes sponsored by their employers to conduct their research degrees.

NEW fully funded BBSRC PhD studentship: Algal Surfactants - Lower Algal Surface Tension (LAST) Follow this link for application information. Closing date - 17 Jan 2015 - See more at:


Postgraduate admissions

Any enquiries regarding both taught and research opportunities for postgraduate students at SAMS should be directed at Fiona Wallace:



Funding for our current and recent research studentships are provided by:


Master courses

We are offering several opportunities for studies at Master level:

We are also delivering the 'Blue Biotechnology' module of the Industrial Biotechnology Master programme launched by the Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre at the University of Strathclyde.


Please note: On our Master programmes, student projects may be undertaken as part of larger externally-funded research activity. In such circumstances, an external sponsor is likely to own the intellectual property and copyright of work generated during your programme of study.


PhD research at SAMS

Doctoral studies at the SAMS cover most marine science sub-disciplines with projects in areas including:

  • Marine robotics
  • Aquaculture and fisheries
  • Marine biotechnology
  • Marine renewable energy
  • Marine policy and governance
  • Physical oceanography
  • Environmental change
  • Marine ecology - from coastal to deep sea
  • Northern and Arctic seas and sea ice dynamics
  • Microbial and molecular biology
  • Sediment geochemistry
  • Palaeoceanography
  • Biogeochemistry
  • Modelling


Current opportunities

  • Genetics and disease of Saccharina latissima - apply by 24 June 2016. More...
  • Utilising microalgal mixotrophy to maximise larval nutrition - apply by 6 June 16. More...
  • Lipidomic and proteomic investigations of commercial bivalve production in Scotland - apply by 6 June 2016. More...
  • Improving the prediction of harmful algal blooms for Scottish aquaculture - apply by 6 June 2016. More...

Some ideas for potential self-funded projects at SAMS can be accessed here...

If you have an interest in becoming a PhD student at SAMS, please contact us.

Note: Most our postgraduate research students are registered through the University of the Highlands and Islands. We have recently begun a close collaborative doctoral programme with the University of Edinburgh.


What our postgraduate research students say about studying at SAMS...

"One of the things that attracted me to SAMS is that various disciplines of marine science are under one roof.  Whilst I still have the support and encouragement of a very strong marine physics group and fellow oceanography students, I share an office with, and interact with ecologists, microbiologists, marine geologists, policy experts and chemists."

Clare Johnson, PhD student - graduated 2012

Contact us
Education Department
Scottish Marine Institute
Oban, Argyll PA37 1QA, UK
T: +44 (0) 1631 559 000
Education @ SAMS
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