Each summer, BIOS offers a suite of courses for both undergraduate and graduate students that capitalizes upon the expertise of our faculty and visiting scientists. These courses, listed below, provide many students the opportunity to study topics in marine science that might not be offered within the curricula of their home institutions. Each course comprises lectures, laboratory exercises, and complementary field components that build upon what is learned in the classroom. Partial scholarships may be available to all students.
Modern Observational Oceanography
July 3-21, 2017
Modern oceanography combines increasingly large and diverse datasets to further our understanding of biogeochemical and physical processes in the marine environment. How are these data obtained and used? The aim of this course is to provide students with a broad introduction to and practical experience in the field of observational oceanography utilizing a variety of state-of-the-art technologies and methods.
During the 3-week course, a combination of lectures, laboratory training and fieldwork will introduce students to current research questions and observational methods used to investigate them. Themes will include carbon and nutrient cycling and the processes that affect biological production in the ocean, carbonate chemistry and ocean acidification, ocean-atmosphere interactions, and the spatial/temporal scales of physical ocean processes. Students will collect samples and utilize various sensors and instrumentation – locally at the BIOS dock, on a 2-day research cruise aboard the UNOLS vessel R/V Atlantic Explorer, and through a small fleet of autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) deployed offshore of Bermuda -- to develop a practical understanding of both the science topics and the techniques used to study them. Throughout the course, students will conduct experiments, participate in round-table discussions, give presentations and produce a short report – all of which will provide opportunities for hands-on learning and a basis for evaluating student progress and performance.
This course is open to senior undergraduate and postgraduate students enrolled in oceanography programs. Adequate standing in university-level physics and chemistry courses is required. SCUBA certification is not required. A detailed course description and course schedule will be posted on this webpage in early 2017. Students can apply to BIOS for scholarships to assist with the course fee.
Coral Reef Optics - NEW COURSE!
July 24-August 11, 2017
The aim of the Coral Reef Optics (CRO) course is to study the light ecology of coral reef benthic organisms and communities. There are two basic goals: the first is to understand variability in the quantity and quality of light reaching the seafloor and the second is to understand how that light drives fundamental reef processes. The CRO course is an intensive, integrated program comprised of lectures, required reading, laboratory exercises and field surveys. Lectures cover a broad range of relevant topics and ecological principals in coral reef optical ecology including concepts in hydrologic optics, fundamentals of aquatic photosynthesis, and metabolism and calcification of reef organisms and communities. Lectures are supplemented by readings from the primary literature with attention given to active areas of research. The course is divided into evening lectures and discussions (1–2 hours) that are complemented with extensive laboratory and field activities on Bermuda’s reef system. The laboratory and field work is designed to introduce students to concepts, instrumentation, and techniques for measurement of chemical, physical, biological, and, of course, optical components of the reef system. Precepts are given to introduce specific lab/field methods and instrumentation. Follow this link for an outline syllabus. A detailed course description and the course schedule will be posted on this webpage in early 2017.
The course will culminate with the two-day science team meeting of the COral Reef Airborne Laboratory (CORAL), where students will gain perspective on how optics is being applied to the study of reef ecology in an ongoing NASA mission.
This course is intended for senior undergraduates and graduate students, as well as postdoctoral scholars seeking to broaden their knowledge base. These prerequisites are firm: prior background/study in coral reef ecology and SCUBA certification.
Readings are taken from the primary scientific literature. Kirk’s Light and Photosynthesis in Aquatic Environments is a key resource.
Coral Reef Ecology: Reef Response to Environmental Change
August 7-25, 2017
The aim of this course is to study the biology of tropical corals and explore their interaction with the environment with a focus on reef response to projected global climate change scenarios. This course covers the biological, physical and biogeochemical processes that determine reef growth and function, ranging from the organism to whole reef tracts. Topics include the processes of metabolism and calcification at the organismal and community scale; determinants of community structure, examining trophic dynamics and species interactions; and reef resilience, emphasizing processes of reproduction and recruitment, response to environmental change, and the economic valuation and management of reefs. Lectures will be complemented with field and laboratory exercises. Students will gain experience in coral reef research methods, including benthic surveys, water quality analysis, assessing recruitment recovery, monitoring bleaching, disease, and invasive species. Laboratory experiments will include coral taxonomy, symbiosis, growth, reproduction and larval settlement.
This course is geared to upper level undergraduates and beginning graduate students. Prerequisites include satisfactory standing in an introductory ecology course and SCUBA certification. A detailed course description and course schedule will be posted on this webpage in early 2017. Course fee: $4,900 (tuition, room and board). Students can apply to BIOS for scholarships to assist with the course fee.
Microbial Oceanography: The Biogeochemistry, Ecology and Genomics of Oceanic Microbial Ecosystems
Course not offered in 2017
Open to all undergraduate and graduate students. SCUBA certification is not required.
Instructors: Dr. Craig Carlson, University of California, Santa Barbara; Dr. Stephen Giovannoni, Oregon State University; Dr. John Heidelberg, University of Southern California; Dr. Craig E. Nelson, University of California, Santa Barbara
The course is offered with two major components: Microbial Molecular Ecology and Microbial Genetics. The Marine Microbial Molecular Ecology course will cover traditional microbiological topics such as physiology, microbial diversity and growth within the context of biogeochemical processes. Lectures will focus on how biological processes and the ecological structure within the water column control the cycling of important elements in the ocean such as carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus. A series of field trips and laboratory experiments will be conducted to investigate microbial processes in the open ocean and in the coral reef dominated waters of Bermuda. The Marine Microbial Genomics course will introduce the types of data that can be obtained from modern genomic methods (e.g., survey sequencing and "meta-" or community genomics of entire ecosystems) and the computational tools useful in the analysis of sequence data.
Application Instructions & Financial Aid Information
The Summer Course Application Form, along with complete instructions, can be found here. Please download the form to your computer (e.g., save it to your desktop), complete it, save it, and send it along with all supporting documents as listed on the application to email@example.com by April 14th, 2017 in order to receive full consideration. Letters of reference should be sent directly to the BIOS education email by referees. Late applications will be considered until the courses are full. Forms filled out in browser mode (i.e., in preview) may not save appropriately.
Partial scholarships may be available for summer course fees; we do not award scholarships toward travel. To apply for a scholarship please fill out the appropriate section at the end of the application form and submit a statement of need along with the core application documents. All students accepted into a BIOS summer course are eligible to receive a partial scholarship from BIOS scholarship funding. Information on summer course scholarships, generally, as well as eligibility for specific scholarships, can be found on the Scholarships page. Dalhousie students may apply for scholarships to attend BIOS summer courses through the Dalhousie-BIOS Experiential Learning Fund; please refer to the Dalhousie-BIOS Application for Undergraduate Scholarships for the deadline, more information and how to apply.
Please read the Course Payment Schedule & Refund Policy, as well as the note about Course Dates and Academic Credit before making your travel plans. Foreign nationals traveling to Bermuda do not require an entry visa. However, proof of residency or a valid Multi Re-Entry Visa for the USA, UK, or Canada may be required for non-US/UK/Canadian citizens, depending upon your country of origin. Please review Immigration Information to check the Bermuda Department of Immigration requests.
Please note that BIOS may cancel a summer course pending insufficient enrollment.