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2023 Maritime Studies Degree Guide

Explore a powerful force that covers two thirds of the earth: the ocean. A Maritime Studies major studies the science, history, and literature of the ocean in a variety of different disciplines.

This is a rigorous major in the field of liberal arts. You will study history, English, literature, political science, geography, and economics as well as the social sciences and humanities. These courses examine traditions and cultural connections to the ocean. Students also explore environmental issues and problems, such as security, policy, and laws. This prepares students for a variety of maritime careers.

Maritime Studies Degrees Shrinking in Popularity

#352 Most Popular Major
50.0 Degrees Awarded
-12.0% Increase in Graduates

In 2020-2021, maritime studies was the 352nd most popular major nationwide with 50 degrees awarded. This 6 less than the prior year, a decrease of 12.0%.

Our 2023 Best Maritime Studies Schools ranking analyzes 1 of these schools to determine the best overall colleges for maritime studies students. Continue reading to check out one of our many unbiased rankings of maritime studies programs later in this article.

2023 Best Colleges for Maritime Studies
2023 Overall Best Maritime Studies Colleges >

Best Maritime Studies Schools by Degree

Bachelor's Degrees in Maritime Studies
Master's Degrees in Maritime Studies

Maritime Studies Degree Requirements

Students should be passionate about the ocean and everything that surrounds it. Critical thinking skills are necessary as you dive into maritime literature and history. Students will need to read and analyze scholarly texts, books and primary sources to complete research papers and reports. The history that surrounds the ocean is vast; you will discover and explore thousands of years of literature from different opinions and perspectives.

Maritime Studies also involves the practical study of politics and oceanography. Problem solving skills will help you practice working with law makers and laws. Learn to clearly explain ideas and perspectives about security issues, policies and pollution. Students will practice applying abstract theory to real-life scenarios in order to prepare for a career in the maritime field.

Getting Accepted Into a Maritime Studies Program

A high school diploma or equivalent is typically required for most maritime studies degree programs and many students will need a minimum GPA and SAT/ACT score depending on the school. Specific maritime studies careers may require a certain level of degree attainment or additional certifications beyond that.

Maritime Studies Degree Types

There are various different levels of maritime studies degrees. Maritime Studies programs offered by schools range from a to a , which is the highest maritime studies degree you can get. Different maritime studies degrees vary in how long they take.

Degree Credit Requirements Typical Program Length
Associate Degree 60-70 credits 2 years
Bachelor’s Degree 120 credits 4 years
Master’s Degree 50-70 credits 1-3 years
Doctorate Program required coursework including thesis or dissertation At least 4 years

A master's degree is the most common level of education achieved by those in careers related to maritime studies, with approximately 23.9% of workers getting one. Find out other typical degree levels for maritime studies workers below.

Level of Education Percentage of Workers
Master’s Degree 23.9%
Bachelor’s Degree 20.4%
Some College Courses 18.0%
Post-Secondary Certificate 15.2%
High School Diploma 9.4%

The chart below shows what degree level those who work in maritime studies have obtained.


This of course varies depending on which maritime studies career you choose.

Career Opportunities for Maritime Studies Majors

Average Number of Jobs
71.7k Avg. Related Jobs Salary
9% Growth Job Outlook 2016-26

This is an extremely diverse field that will allow you to enter many different occupations, depending on your unique interests. Your skills will allow you to work as a marina manager, aquaculture technician, conservation and resource manager, or environmental policy analyst. Graduates also find work as teachers, journalists, or documentary film makers. Other career paths include underwater archeology, coastal town planning, or non-profit development officer.

Solid Growth Projected for Maritime Studies Careers

Want a job when you graduate with your maritime studies degree? Maritime Studies careers are expected to grow 9.3% between 2016 and 2026.

The following options are some of the most in-demand careers related to maritime studies.

Occupation Name Projected Jobs Expected Growth
Professors 258,700 9.4%
Historians 3,500 6.1%

How Much Money Do People With a Maritime Studies Degree Make?

As you might expect, salaries for maritime studies graduates vary depending on the level of education that was acquired.

Highest Paid Maritime Studies Careers

Salaries for maritime studies graduates can vary widely by the occupation you choose as well. The following table shows the top highest paying careers maritime studies grads often go into.

Occupation Name Median Average Salary
Professors $76,990
Historians $66,380

Getting Your Maritime Studies Degree

With over 7 different maritime studies degree programs to choose from, finding the best fit for you can be a challenge. Fortunately you have come to the right place. We have analyzed all of these schools to come up with hundreds of unbiased maritime studies school rankings to help you with this.

Study Areas in Maritime Studies

One of 44 majors within the Multi / Interdisciplinary Studies area of study, Maritime Studies has other similar majors worth exploring.

Majors Similar to Maritime Studies

Related Major Annual Graduates
Other Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies 34,975
Biological & Physical Science 30,075
Interdisciplinary Studies 9,074
International Studies 7,368
Nutrition Science 5,330

View All Maritime Studies Related Majors >


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