Changes in the course due to coronavirus

Autumn 2020 the exams of most courses at the MN Faculty will be conducted as digital home exams or oral exams, using the normal grading scale. The semester page for your course will be updated with any changes in the form of examination.

See general guidelines for examination at the MN Faculty autumn 2020.

Course content

The course gives an introduction to the ecosystems of the free water masses, and will cover topics ranging from the physico-chemical environment to food webs, biological processes and evolutionary adaptations of pelagic organisms, to how contemporary environmental challenges affect these systems. These topics will be explored in lectures, laboratory and computer exercises and in the field. The field work includes cruise(s) with the research vessel Trygve Braarud and a four day field course in Drøbak.

Learning outcome

This course provides basic understanding of small and large scale processes that govern the structure and function of pelagic ecosystems. You will receive an introduction to:

  • the physico-chemical environment, and its role for vertical structure of the pelagic habitat.
  • organisms, biological processes, evolutionary adaptations, and food webs.
  • the role of global change for the pelagic ecosystems
  • pelagic sampling

Admission to the course

Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.

Formal prerequisite knowledge

HMS0503 - Laboratory Safety

HMS0504 - Field Safety

BIO1000 – Elementary Biology (discontinued)

Overlapping courses


The teaching consists of lectures, laboratory exercises, computer exercises, colloquia, project work, cruises with the research vessel Trygve Braarud in Inner Oslofjord, and a week long field course in Drøbak. Laboratory and computer exercises, cruises, field work, and project work are mandatory, as are instructive lectures prior to these.

Participation on the excursion is mandatory.

First lecture is mandatory. If you can not attend the first lecture, please send a note to, before the first lecture.

As the teaching involves laboratory and/or field work, you should consider taking out a separate travel and personal risk insurance. Read about your insurance cover as a student.

The course is only given if three or more students meet on the first lecture.

Cost of taking the course

The excursion has a fee on 150 NOK per day.


To be able to take the final written exam, students need to recieve a passing grade on reports from laboratory exercises, project nd Field work. All mandatory teaching must be passed. Final written exam (3h) counts 100%.

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt. It will also be counted as one of the three attempts to sit the exam for this course, if you sit the exam for one of the following courses: BIO3400 – Aquatic Ecology (discontinued).

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed.

Language of examination

You may write your examination paper in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Resit an examination

This course offers both postponed and resit of examination. Read more:

Special examination arrangements, use of sources, explanations and appeals

See more about examinations at UiO

Last updated from FS (Common Student System) Oct. 23, 2020 10:13:12 AM

Facts about this course

Teaching language
Norwegian (English on request)