BYU-Idaho Marine Biology Field Experience (MBFE)

Spring Semester - First Block, Odd Years

MBFE provides BYU-Idaho students an opportunity to gain hands-on experience in marine biology and marine ecology.  Participants complete on-line instruction in basic marine science and research design prior to spending four weeks in residence at the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology (OIMB), located at the mouth of Coos Bay, OR.  OIMB is the marine biological station of the University of Oregon.  

  During their time at OIMB, MBFE students participate in course work in marine biology and visit a wide diversity of intertidal habitats where they learn methods of field research.  They also work together in research teams to propose, plan, and carry out research projects in marine ecology.  Each research team also writes a research manuscript in which they report the results and conclusions of their work.  The best papers will be submitted to a professional journal for possible publication. 

MBFE participants enroll in the following BYU-Idaho courses:


  1. BIO 314* - Marine Biology (3 credits)
  2. BIO 499R - Undergraduate Research (3 credits)
  3. BIO 401R - Readings in Biology (1 credit)

*Students enroll in BIO 490 - Special Problems if the previously earned credit for BIO 314.

MBFE Prerequisites: 

FDMAT 222 - Biostatistics or comparable course
BIO 181 - Biology II or BIO 302 - Ecology I

MBFE Fees: $1500 + BYU-Idaho Tuition

MBFE fees cover OIMB room and board (dorm + 3 meals/day), laboratory space, and other class-related costs, plus transportation to and from field sites while at OIMB.

Note 1: MBFE fees do not cover student transportation costs to and from OIMB; MBFE participants provide their own transportation to and from OIMB.

Enrollment in MBFE

Acceptance into MBFE is by application only.  You can obtain an application form from the BYU-Idaho Biology Department Office (Benson 201) or from the MBFE Director: Dr. Alan Holyoak, BEN 294L,, (208) 496-4619.


Q: May my spouse come with me to OIMB?

A: OIMB housing is not available for spouses who are not MBFE participants.

Q: Can MBFE research be used to meet the internship requirement for graduation?

A:  Yes, students need only petition the Chair of the Biology Department to apply the successful completion of MBFE BIO 499R credit to the University internship requirement.

Q: Do I have to be in residence at BYU-Idaho for the portion of the block when we are not in residence at OIMB?

A: No. 

Q: Do I have to be a spring-track student or biology major to participate in MBFE?

A: No, any qualified BYU-Idaho student can apply.