BI3EW8-Conservation Biology

Module Provider: School of Biological Sciences
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2017/8

Module Convenor: Dr Graham Holloway


Type of module:

Summary module description:

This module aims to provide students with an understanding of the science of conservation biology and its use in the sustainable management of genes, species, communities and habitats.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of the module it is expected that the student will be able to:
Describe the main ecological and genetic principles of conservation biology.
Critically assess the value of these principles in addressing a range of different 'real world' conservation problems.
Apply ecological principles to address 'real world' conservation problems.
Place the role and value of wildlife and habitat conservation into a socioeconomic and philosophical framework.

Additional outcomes:
The module will provide students with the opportunity to carry out their own research into a number of targeted examinations questions to gain depth of understanding going beyond information provided in the lectures.

Outline content:
The course will include conservation philosophy and how it sits within socio-economic reality. Threats to biodiversity from habitat loss, invasive species, pollution and global climate change are extensively explored. Strategies deployed to counteract biodiversity loss are considered and the strengths and weaknesses of these strategies are examined. Ex-situ as well as in-situ conservation is covered. Factors associated with mammalian, bird and insect conservation are considered. The drivers and global distribution of rarity is given special attention.

Global context:
The material covered draws on examples from different biomes from across the world and considers both vertebrate and invertebrate species.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
There will be two or three 1 hour lectures each week to explore various aspects of conservation biology. The lectures are interactive and students are encouraged throughout to test their knowledge and identification skills. Special cases will be delivered by external speakers.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 26
Guided independent study 174
Total hours by term 200.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:
A 1 ½ hour examination

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

Formative assessment methods:
Throughout the lecture series students will be encouraged to test their knowledge of conservation issues and species identification through interaction with the lecturer.

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convener will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day[1] (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Assessment requirements for a pass:
    A mark of 40% overall.

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Re-sit examination in August/September.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 11 May 2018


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