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SEA Semester-Marine Biodiversity & Conservation

Program Location Woods Hole, MA, and at Sea, Multiple Countries
Sponsor Sea Education Association
Program Type Co-sponsored
Course # SA 30035
Duration Spring Semester
Upcoming Program Dates
To Be Announced

Page Links
Overview Purdue Credit
Eligibility Academics
Program Costs Financial Aid
Deadline Returnee Info

Multiple Countries Map
Country map courtesy of The General Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin

SEA Semester-Marine Biodiversity & Conservation

The oceans cover 70% of our planet and yet less than 1% of their area is protected. Scientists estimate that oceans contain more than one million species and report that less than one-quarter of these have been identified. Undiscovered ocean biodiversity has the potential to transform medicine, industry, environmental remediation, and energy production, but is threatened by pollution, habitat destruction, fishing, and climate change. With limited knowledge of biodiversity, we lack the data needed to plan rational and effective protection and conservation of the ocean. This semester challenges students to integrate the scientific study of marine biodiversity with conservation planning for the Atlantic high seas area.

This is a three part program:

  1. Intensive study at SEA's campus in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, prepares students for the research cruise. In Woods Hole, students will study the program topics and learn skills necessary to operate a sailing research vessel (since no previous sailing experience is required). In addition, students will design a research project to be carried out during the voyage.
  2. During the actual voyage, students will carry out all functions of the sailing research vessel as well as sample oceanographic gradients, different marine biomes, and socio-political systems that are rarely encountered directly by humans. In addition, students will collect archive samples for the global marine biodiversity effort.
  3. Students will then return to Woods Hole to complete scientific analyses and participate in formal presentations on high seas biodiversity and conservation for an invited panel of science and policy experts.

This program now runs during the spring semester only.

For more program information, please visit the program website. This program is sponsored by:Sea Education Association.


SEA Semester-Marine Biodiversity & Conservation

The program is open to Purdue students who have completed at least two semesters of university study by the start of the program. Successful candidates will demonstrate academic success and maturity.

This program is meant primarily for upper-level science or policy majors. A minimum of three lab science courses, including one at the 300-level or higher, is a prerequisite for this program. In special cases, the prerequisite may be waived by SEA.

GPA Requirement: 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
Language Requirement: none

Purdue Credit
Direct Credit available from the following: [College of Agriculture][College of Liberal Arts][College of Science]

Students interested in completing courses while abroad from Purdue colleges or departments that are not listed above should discuss this with their study abroad advisor before applying to the program.

Academic Program

Click here for course descriptions.

Estimated Program Costs

Students should carefully note what costs need to be paid to Purdue University or to a co-sponsor or agency, and what costs need to be paid at the overseas study location.  This will vary by program.

Program and housing fees include: tuition for 17 credits, including academic field trip and science lab fees, housing (on the SEA campus in Woods Hole during the shore component and on the sailboat during the voyage), prepaid grocery cards for use during the shore component, three meals plus three snacks per day while at sea, on-site orientation, and on-site student support and supervision for the duration of the program.

Costs for this program are estimated and subject to change. The cost figures listed below are for: Spring 2018

Costs per semester to be billed by Purdue and Co-sponsor
Program Fee$22,800.00
Study Abroad Fee$914.00
Purdue International Insurance (per month)$32.00
Program Discount for Purdue Students- $5,000.00

Approximate additional costs per semester
To be paid by the student.
Round-trip Airfare$1,000.00
Miscellaneous Personal Expenses $0.00 -$350.00
Travel Documents (passport, photos)$175.00

Financial Aid

Purdue University financial aid may be applied to the costs of studying abroad. Students interested in receiving financial aid should

NOTE:  Recipients of certain tuition remission and scholarship programs should pay careful attention to the regulations for using those benefits for study abroad.  Ask your financial aid advisor about any limitations.

Click here for a list of scholarships and grants available to assist with the costs of studying overseas.

Application Deadlines

For full consideration, students must submit all supporting documents before or by the application deadline.  Popular programs fill quickly, often before the deadline.  To insure a place in a program, apply early.

As soon as a student submits an on-line application, a My Study Abroad account is created. Applicants should consult this page often to check on the status of the application.

Program Application Deadline
Most Spring Semester Programs Sep 15

Returnees Information
SEA Semester-Marine Biodiversity & Conservation

Click below to search for Purdue students who have participated in this program and are willing to be contacted.  If you get no results, you can use the search form to find people who studied in the country you are interested in.


The websites listed below contain information about this program. The accuracy of information at external sites cannot be guaranteed.

For more information on this program, please contact the Study Abroad Office by phone (765) 494-2383 or email

Purdue University, 610 Purdue Mall, West Lafayette, IN 47907, (765) 494-4600

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