College of Science

Department of Marine Science

MSCI Capstone Information Summary

Capstone provides students an opportunity to synthesize knowledge, skills, and abilities developed over the course of their learning experience at CSUMB. Marine Science capstone helps students connect their marine science and policy knowledge to critical issues of ocean stewardship, conservation, exploitation, and management at local, national, and global scales.

CSUMB Marine Science (MSCI) Capstone Options

Marine Science Majors may choose one of two, and only two, available options to meet the CSUMB capstone requirement for the major.

Options 1: Marine Science Group Capstone

  • Student must enroll in one of the approved MSCI Group Capstone classes (e.g., MSCI 433, 455, or 470) during senior year (specifically, the year in which the student is planning to graduate).
  • Student MUST simultaneously enroll in a MSCI.410 section with the same faculty member as the class you're taking to receive credit for the capstone.
  • May include a written report, public presentation, and/or research poster.

Option 2: Marine Science Independent Honors Capstone with CSUMB Faculty Lead

  • Student should discuss interest with a potential tenure-track CSUMB faculty advisor a minimum of one year prior to the intended graduation date.
  • Student and advisor must develop a timeline for preparation of a capstone proposal.
  • Proposal must achieve the equivalent of an A- from the CSUMB faculty advisor in order to proceed forward with the capstone project.
  • In the student’s final semester, the student should enroll in MSCI 402 to receive credit for capstone.
  • Must include a written report and a public presentation assessed by advisor and 1 other faculty.


Many Marine Science Majors are encouraged to and do participate in research internship experiences as a valuable addition to their education (e.g. summer internships at partnering institutions arrange through UROC or an REU). However, Marine Science Majors wishing to use a research internship experience to fulfill their capstone graduation requirement fall under and must meet all conditions of Option 2 above.

Examples of MSCI Capstone Presentations