Marine Spatial Planning & Management (MS)

Marine Studies (Marine Spatial Planning and Management) -

Master’s Degree

Skills and Interests

You want to work collaboratively to analyze how development impacts the ecological, economic, social and cultural aspects of coastal and marine areas. Graduates of this program will balance the demands of economic development and environmental conservation placed on our oceans and coastal areas to create a spatial vision and comprehensive management plans for their use.

Work Environment

Government agencies, eNGOs, coastal and ocean industry sectors, consulting companies.

Program Location:

Delivered In Class and Online

Program Length:

30 credit hours with an internship or research paper options


MMS (MSPM) Program Information

Application Deadline:

Fall:   June 15

Program Description

The first graduate program of its kind in Canada, the Master of Marine Studies (Marine Spatial Planning and Management) focuses on the governance, bio-ecological, socio-economic, cultural and technological elements of sustainable ocean and coastal zone development, planning and management.

Program Structure

This program offers a blended approach that includes online courses, on-campus courses including one course during spring intersession and options for an internship or research project.

The program is structured to provide a balance between conceptual/theoretical background and practical applied skills. As such, students will develop a broad level understanding of planning processes and the governance, policy/legislative, ecological, social, cultural and economic elements of coastal and ocean areas complemented by practical and applied skills for stakeholder engagement, project management and utilization of geospatial technology to support planning efforts. Throughout the program, courses will be structured to introduce theoretical concepts and then examine real world examples of their application.

  • Adherence to the general admission requirements of Memorial University's School of Graduate Studies.
  • Undergraduate degree with a second class standing or better from a university of recognized standing.
  • Students intending to undertake electives in Decision Support / Geospatial Analysis are required to have a background in mathematics, statistics and geographic information systems.
  • In exceptional cases, applicants who have not completed an undergraduate degree may be considered for admission. Preference will be given to those who have at least 10 years of relevant professional experience, and have successfully completed several years of post-secondary studies.
What Industry Says

MSP is developing rapidly in many areas, especially the EU, US and Australia. Engaging in effective decision-making through an MSP process is a key need for the ocean business community.

- Paul Holthus CEO, World Ocean Council