Marine Biologists study the anatomy, physiology, functions, characteristics, behaviour and environments of all forms of life living in the sea and connected water bodies.

    A bachelor degree in science majoring in marine biology, marine science or a related field is needed to work as a Marine Biologist. Many Marine Biologists complete postgraduate studies.

    Tasks

    • Plans and undertakes experiments to study, measure and understand marine animals and plants.
    • Investigates the interrelationships between animals in their natural surroundings, in captivity and in laboratories.

    All Life Scientists

    • $1,794 Weekly Pay
    • Moderate Future Growth
    • Average unemployment Unemployment

    Marine Biologists

    • 670 workers Employment Size
    • Very high skill Skill level rating
    • 78% Full-Time Full-Time Share
    • 43 hours Average full-time
    • 41 years Average age
    • 40% female Gender Share

    The number of people working as Marine Biologists (in their main job) fell over 5 years:
    from 840 in 2011 to 670 in 2016.

    • Size: This is a very small occupation.
    • Location: Marine Biologists work in many parts of Australia. Queensland, Western Australia and Tasmania have a large share of workers.
    • Industries: Most work in Professional, Scientific and Technical Services; Public Administration and Safety; and Education and Training.
    • Full-time: Many work full-time (78%, higher than the average of 66%).
    • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 43 hours per week at work (compared to the average of 44 hours).
    • Age: The average age is 41 years (compared to the average of 40 years).
    • Gender: 40% of workers are female (compared to the average of 48%).

    Employment Outlook

    Number of Workers

    No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

    Weekly Earnings

    Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

    No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

    Main Industries

    Main Employing Industries (% Share)

    Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
    Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
    Professional, Scientific and Technical Services39.5
    Public Administration and Safety27.8
    Education and Training16.7
    Arts and Recreation Services4.8
    Other Industries11.2

    States and Territories

    • NSW

    • VIC

    • QLD

    • SA

    • TAS

    • NT

    • ACT

    Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

    Source: Based on Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
    StateMarine BiologistsAll Jobs Average
    NSW11.231.6
    VIC7.025.6
    QLD33.020.0
    SA8.27.0
    WA24.110.8
    TAS12.42.0
    NT2.61.0
    ACT1.71.9

    Age Profile

    Age Profile (% Share)

    Source: Based on Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
    Age BracketMarine BiologistsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
    15-190.0-5.05.0
    20-244.2-9.39.3
    25-3423.0-22.922.9
    35-4435.3-22.022.0
    45-5422.6-21.621.6
    55-597.8-9.09.0
    60-644.1-6.06.0
    65 and Over3.0-4.24.2

    Education Level

    Highest Level of Education (% Share)

    Source: ABS, ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
    Type of QualificationMarine BiologistsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
    Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate59.2-10.110.1
    Bachelor degree37.8-21.821.8
    Advanced Diploma/Diploma1.7-11.611.6
    Certificate III/IV0.9-21.121.1
    Year 120.5-18.118.1
    Year 110.0-4.84.8
    Year 10 and below0.0-12.512.5

    A bachelor degree in science majoring in marine biology, marine science or a related field is needed to work as a Marine Biologist. Many Marine Biologists complete postgraduate studies.

    Membership with the Australian Marine Sciences Association may be useful.

    Thinking about study or training?

    Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

    • Search and compare thousands of higher education courses, and their entry requirements from different institutions across Australia at Course Seeker website.
    • Compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes on the QILT website.

    Or check out related courses on Job Outlook.

    Useful links and resources


    The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

    Employers look for Life Scientists who can communicate clearly, work well in a team and have strong interpersonal skills.

    Filter Skills & Knowledge

    Knowledge

    These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

    1. Biology

      85% Skill level

      Plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, how they rely on and work with each other and the environment.

    2. Mathematics

      72% Skill level

      Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

    3. Chemistry

      71% Skill level

      Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change.

    4. English Language

      69% Skill level

      English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

    5. Computers and Electronics

      57% Skill level

      Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

    Occupational Information Network
    O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
    The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 19-1020.01 - Biologists.

    Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

    Filter Work Environment

    Demands

    The physical and social demands workers face most often are shown below.

    1. Electronic Mail

      100% Important

      How often do you use electronic mail?

    2. Indoors, Heat Controlled

      98% Important

      How often do you work indoors with access to heating or cooling?

    3. Face-to-Face Discussions

      97% Important

      How often do you talk with people face-to-face?

    4. Telephone

      97% Important

      How often do you talk on the telephone?

    5. Being Exact or Accurate

      89% Important

      How important is being very exact or highly accurate?

    Occupational Information Network
    O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
    The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 19-1020.01 - Biologists.

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