PLANT DIVERSITY AND ECOLOGY

BOT2PDE

2016

Credit points: 15

Subject outline

Important aspects of biodiversity and its conservation in Australia are covered in this subject and represent an introduction to plant ecology and plant systematics. In the component on plant ecology, the broad topic of the effects of environmental and biotic factors on the distribution of plant species is covered. Topics discussed include community assembly, patterns of diversity in space and time, and plant population processes. In the component on plant diversity, the broad topic of the origin and evolution of the Australian flowering plant flora is covered. Topics discussed include an introduction to plant systematics, the evolution and classification of flowering plants with particular reference to the Australian flora, plant geography of the Australian region and keys and identification of Australian flowering plants. A 4.5 day field trip to far western Victoria is an essential part of the subject.

SchoolSchool of Life Sciences

Credit points15

Subject Co-ordinatorJohn Morgan

Available to Study Abroad StudentsYes

Subject year levelYear Level 2 - UG

Exchange StudentsYes

Subject particulars

Subject rules

Prerequisites BIO1PS or BIO1EEB

Co-requisitesN/A

Incompatible subjects BOT2PE, BOT2AES

Equivalent subjectsN/A

Special conditions The field trip is an essential part of the subject and reports based on it are used in the final assessment. It is not possible to set alternative work. All students must prepare a herbarium collection. Details will be provided at the beginning of the semester.

Learning resources

Readings

Resource TypeTitleResource RequirementAuthor and YearPublisher
ReadingsThe families and genera of Victorian plants,PrescribedDuigan, S. L.SCHOOL OF BOTANY, THE UNIVERSITY OF MELBOURNE 1992.

Graduate capabilities & intended learning outcomes

01. Write an individual scientific report that fully describes and discusses the vegetation sampling study designed and undertaken (as a group of 4 students) during the mid-semester field trip.

Activities:
During the field trip students are instructed on hypothesis testing, field sampling methods/techniques and data analysis, and are given feedback on their group's study design. Students to follow the scientific report format given in the FSTE 1st year survival guide. Lectures provide background theory.
Related graduate capabilities and elements:
Creative Problem-solving (Creative Problem-solving)
Inquiry/ Research (Inquiry/ Research)
Writing (Writing)
Ethical Awareness (Ethical Awareness)
Quantitative Literacy/ Numeracy (Quantitative Literacy/ Numeracy)
Discipline-specific GCs (Discipline-specific GCs)
Critical Thinking (Critical Thinking)

02. Prepare a herbarium (plant collection) and classify all specimens to genus level

Activities:
During lectures and/or laboratory classes students receive instruction in the ethics of plant collection, how to prepare plant specimens and reinforce & extend plant identification skills introduced in 1st year.
Related graduate capabilities and elements:
Discipline-specific GCs (Discipline-specific GCs)
Ethical Awareness (Ethical Awareness)

03. Investigate the floral morphology of major Australian plant families by dissection and description.

Activities:
Laboratory classes and lectures - assessed in practical exam
Related graduate capabilities and elements:
Inquiry/ Research (Inquiry/ Research)
Discipline-specific GCs (Discipline-specific GCs)

04. Incorporate relevant research findings from the scientific literature to support statements in the scientific report on the field trip study.

Activities:
Lectures use examples from the scientific literature and FSTE 1st year survival guide gives instruction on citations and referencing.
Related graduate capabilities and elements:
Inquiry/ Research (Inquiry/ Research)

05. Respond critically to plant diversity and ecology issues by incorporating material from lectures to provide a logical argument.

Activities:
Lectures provide the background information to issues and demonstrate the method of developing a logical argument in relation to a particular issue. Assessment in theory exam.
Related graduate capabilities and elements:
Discipline-specific GCs (Discipline-specific GCs)
Critical Thinking (Critical Thinking)

06. Using supplied datasets, respond to a scenario to solve a plant ecological problem.

Activities:
Lectures demonstrate problem solving using datasets and a given scenario. Assessment in theory exam.
Related graduate capabilities and elements:
Quantitative Literacy/ Numeracy (Quantitative Literacy/ Numeracy)
Discipline-specific GCs (Discipline-specific GCs)
Creative Problem-solving (Creative Problem-solving)
Critical Thinking (Critical Thinking)

Subject options

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Start date between: and    Key dates

Melbourne, 2016, Semester 2, Day

Overview

Online enrolmentYes

Maximum enrolment sizeN/A

Enrolment information

Subject Instance Co-ordinatorJohn Morgan

Class requirements

Field Trip
One 5.0 days field trip other recurrence on weekdays during the day and delivered via face-to-face.
"During the mid-semester break. This field trip is only 4.5 days and not 5 days."

Lecture Week: 31 - 43
Three 1.0 hours lecture per week on weekdays during the day from week 31 to week 43 and delivered via face-to-face.

Practical Week: 31 - 43
One 4.0 hours practical per week on weekdays during the day from week 31 to week 43 and delivered via face-to-face.

Assessments

Assessment elementComments% ILO*
one 1,000-word field trip report15 01, 04
one 2-hour examination and one 1-hour field exam50 05, 06
one 2-hour practical examination10 03
practical assignments and herbarium25 02, 03