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
June 30-July 18, 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. Please use the following links to review a detailed course description, schedule, syllabus and list of projects plus course grading. Course fee: $4,900 (tuition, room and board). Students can apply to BIOS for scholarships to assist with the course fee.
Coral Reef Ecology: Reef Response to Environmental Change
August 7-25, 2017
The aim of this course is to study the biology and ecology of tropical corals and explore their response to environmental changes including those from projected global climate scenarios. This course covers the biological, physical, biogeochemical and evolutionary processes that determine reef growth, function and resilience, ranging from the organism to whole reef tracts. Topics include the processes of metabolism and calcification at the cellular, organismal, and community scale; determinants of community structure, examining trophic dynamics and species interactions; and reef resilience and acclimatization to environmental change, emphasizing processes of reproduction, recruitment, symbiosis, genetics and epigenetics. Lectures will be complemented with field and laboratory exercises. Students will gain experience in coral reef research methods and monitoring of reef health, including benthic surveys, water quality analysis, assessing recruitment recovery, monitoring bleaching, disease, reef fish ecology and invasive species. Laboratory experiments will focus on coral physiology, including symbiosis, growth, reproduction, larval settlement, larval cellular stress response, analysis of next generation coral transcriptomic data and symbiont genetic data.
The Coral Reef Ecology course at the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences is an intensive, integrated program comprised of lectures, precepts, laboratory exercises, field (SCUBA) surveys and readings from the primary literature with attention given to active areas of research. The course culminates with a morning of oral presentations where the students present their analysis and research on the data sets collected during the field and lab work. Follow this link for more information and an example schedule.
This course is geared to upper level undergraduates, graduate students and professionals. Prerequisites include satisfactory standing in university-level biology and ecology, and SCUBA certification. Course fee: $4,900 (tuition, room and board). Students can apply to BIOS for scholarships to assist with the course fee..
Coral Reef Optics
Course not offered in 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. Readings are taken from the primary scientific literature. Kirk’s Light and Photosynthesis in Aquatic Environments is a key resource. Follow these links for the course syllabus and a preliminary schedule.
This course is intended primarily for graduate students, though postdoctoral scholars and even advanced undergraduates will be considered. The objective is to enhance the student’s academic and professional development with better understanding of the light ecology of coral reef communities. These prerequisites are firm: prior background/study in coral reef ecology and SCUBA certification. 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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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.