Aquarium Science One Year Certificate

Students may earn a Certificate of Completion in Aquarium Science by successfully completing the required 53 credit hours with a grade of C or better in all courses. This option is only open to individuals who possess a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in a life science related discipline such as Biology, Zoology, Marine Biology, Ecology, or similar area. Students are required to complete 132 hours of practicum and 400 hours of field internship.  Courses with a § symbol may not be substituted.

Aquarium Science

The Aquarium Science Program offers a comprehensive two-year Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree and a one-year Certificate that is open only to individuals who already possess a Bachelor’s degree in a life science area.

Both the Certificate and the AAS provide theory and practical experience designed to prepare students for a career in aquatic animal husbandry. Enrollment in the Aquarium Science Program is limited. For additional information and to apply for the program online visit the college webpage at http://www.oregoncoast.edu/aquarium-science or contact officeofinstruction@oregoncoast.edu.  Students who successfully earn a degree or certificate will be qualified to work in the aquatic animal husbandry profession. They may be eligible for entry-level positions as aquarists, aquatic biologists, and keepers. Potential employment opportunities include public zoos and aquariums, ornamental fish retailers and wholesalers, aquaculture businesses, fish hatcheries, research programs, marine educational centers, state and federal natural resource agencies, as well as self-employment.

Admissions Requirements

Enrollment is limited to 20 to 24 students each year. Individuals wanting to enroll in the program must complete an on-line application located at http://www.oregoncoast.edu/aquarium-science.  Each applicant will have an interview with the Aquarium Science faculty.

Certificate Outcomes

  • Students completing the AAS or certificate will:
  • Accurately communicate, verbally, and in writing, scientific concepts, research findings and ideas to professionals and the general public.
  • Maintain, analyze, diagnose, and repair aquatic life support systems and their components.
  • Perform basic water quality analysis using standard testing equipment.
  • Maintain healthy animal populations by applying industry standards and practices to aquarium set-up, monitoring, and animal care.
  • Identify healthy, physically compromised animals, and abnormal animal behaviors.
  • Work as a member of a team to conceptualize, plan, construct, and manage environments that promote healthy fishes and invertebrates.
  • Apply fundamental knowledge and skills in science, mathematics, and communications for success in a professional or academic setting (AAS degree specific outcome).

1.    At least 12 credits must be earned at OCCC, 9 of which must apply to the certificate requirements.
2.    The final 9 credits that apply to the certificate must be earned at OCCC; the department may waive this requirement if the student can demonstrate currency in the field.

Aquarium Science One-Year Certificate Program Costs

Information regarding program costs can be found on the website. Contact Student Services at 541-867-8503 to find out about financial aid eligibility.