Module Details

The information contained in this module specification was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change, either during the session because of unforeseen circumstances, or following review of the module at the end of the session. Queries about the module should be directed to the member of staff with responsibility for the module.
Title Marine Pollution
Code ENVS232
Coordinator Dr P Salaun
Earth, Ocean and Ecological Sciences
Year CATS Level Semester CATS Value
Session 2023-24 Level 5 FHEQ Second Semester 15


This module aims to introduce students to the main anthropogenic stressors, their effects and importance on the marine system. It also aims to train students in reading of scientific papers as well as enhancing their communication skills.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) An understanding of what marine pollution is

(LO2) An understanding of the main anthropogenic stressors on the marine system

(LO3) An understanding of the underlying processes that affect the extent of a marine pollution issue

(LO4) An understanding of the methods that can be used to monitor specific problems

(LO5) An understanding of the remediation techniques that can be used to minimise a particular issue

(LO6) An understanding of the international regulations that are in place to protect the marine system

(LO7) An awareness of high-impact research papers that have contributed in understanding, monitoring and/or remediating a specific pollution issue

(LO8) An awareness of how prevalent marine pollution issues are being reported in the news

(S1) Communication skills (design video, recording audio)

(S2) International awareness



Introduction to Marine Pollution and Challenges in a Changing World
Eutrophication of Coastal Waters
Marine Debris and Plastic Pollution     
Harmful Algal Blooms
Estuarine Pollution
Persistent Organic Pollutants (pesticides)
Trace Metals
Oil Pollution
Marine Heatwaves
Noise Pollution
Emerging Threats (e.g. nanomaterials, personal care products)
Marine Legislation

Please note that this syllabus may slightly change.

Teaching and Learning Strategies

Typically 2 x 1h weekly lectures. Each topic will have a set of recommended research papers as reading list.

Peer-learning: Videos made by students will be made accessible to everyone and will be discussed in groups.

Self-directed learning: reading through research papers and books is advised. Important recently published research papers will be incorporated in the reading list of each topic.

Teaching Schedule

  Lectures Seminars Tutorials Lab Practicals Fieldwork Placement Other TOTAL
Study Hours 22


Timetable (if known)              
Private Study 126


EXAM Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
Written Exam (in person, 120 mins). There is a resit opportunity. This is an anonymous assessment.  120    50       
CONTINUOUS Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
Video Presentation (10 min long group video about specific research papers addressing a particular aspect of a marine pollution issue; the video will then be discussed during a 20 min Q&A session with  10    30       
On-line coursework where students are asked to answer questions related to specific marine pollution issues. There is a resit opportunity. Standard UoL penalty applies for late submission. This   45    20       

Recommended Texts

Reading lists are managed at Click here to access the reading lists for this module.