BI2EK3P-Part 2 Zoology Field Course C

Module Provider: School of Biological Sciences
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Level:5
Terms in which taught: Summer term module
Pre-requisites:
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Co-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2015/6

Module Convenor: Dr Richard Walters

Email: r.j.walters@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:

Aims:
This module will provide students with an understanding of the range of techniques used to census and monitor animals and plants in terrestrial and aquatic environments.

Students will be provided with training in:
- Fauna and flora identification skills
- Various census and surveying techniques for different habitats and taxonomic groups
- How to conduct research: hypothesis development, experimental design, statistical analysis, scientific writing and oral presentation

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of the module it is expected that students will:
- Be able to identify and, where possible, sex of the principle species encountered
- Have gained practical experience and ability with a number of the available census techniques for a range of organisms
- Have an understanding of the benefits and limitations of various ecological census techniques
- Be able to devise, plan and execute a hypothesis-based project related to ecology and/or behaviour
- Be able to analyse, interpret and present biological data

Additional outcomes:
Students will gain practical experience in operating field-based projects.

Outline content:
The course provides an opportunity for 7 days full-time study to provide an in-depth understanding of the main techniques used for surveying, monitoring and studying a range of organisms. The course will be based at Stockholm University's Zoological field station at Tovetorp just south of Stockholm.

During the course students will visit and learn about the following habitats, their associated fauna and flora and their management: pristine vs. managed forests, the Baltic Sea, meadows, lakes and rivers. Daytrips will include visits to Tyresta and Farnebofjarden National Parks and Stockholm City for a tour of urban 'greening' projects.

Towards the end of the field course, students will be expected to either (a) devise and implement a study of their choice, using the techniques they have learnt, which addresses one or more specific ecological or behavioural hypotheses or (b) to take part in a group project, involving all members of the class. In either case, students would be expected to write the results in the form of a short scientific paper for submission during the following Autumn Term.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
Short lectures and introductory sessions will be used to introduce concepts, skills and methods to the students. Practical skills will be taught in the field in small groups by two members of staff.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 8
Practicals classes and workshops 12
Fieldwork 60
Guided independent study 20
       
Total hours by term 100.00
       
Total hours for module 100.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 40
Report 40
Class test administered by School 20

Other information on summative assessment:
Assessment is partially in-course and consists of:
40% - written reports of three class exercises to be submitted during the course;
40% - written report of project work in the form of a scientific paper to be submitted in the following Autumn Term;
20% - identification quiz.

Formative assessment methods:
Students will take place in a range of formal and informal exercises in which they will be able to discuss their work with supervisors and demonstrators and receive oral feedback on aspects of their performance throughout the course.

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convener will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (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: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    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.

    Length of examination:

    Requirements for a pass:
    A mark of 40% overall

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Re-examination in August/September

    Last updated: 11 March 2015

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