Credit points: 15

Subject outline

Students will be introduced to how mathematical models are used in biological, biophysical sciences and we will emphasise insight into how models may be derived from biophysical assumptions. A small but representative range of biophysical applications is investigated. The strengths and limitations of models to make predictions about ecological sustainability are explored. The subject is organised in modules, each focusing on a specific application. The subject is delivered mainly on-line. Learning resources including all lecture materials will be available on-line. Students meet for two 1-hour problem solving classes per week to work through problem sets designed to strengthen basic mathematical skills. Considerable use will be made of spreadsheets as a tool for understanding mathematical models and performing calculations.

SchoolEngineering and Mathematical Sciences

Credit points15

Subject Co-ordinatorYuri Nikolayevsky

Available to Study Abroad/Exchange StudentsYes

Subject year levelYear Level 1 - UG

Available as ElectiveNo

Learning ActivitiesN/A

Capstone subjectNo

Subject particulars

Subject rules



Incompatible subjectsN/A

Equivalent subjectsN/A

Quota Management StrategyN/A

Quota-conditions or rulesN/A

Special conditionsN/A

Minimum credit point requirementN/A

Assumed knowledgeN/A

Career Ready


Work-based learningNo

Self sourced or Uni sourcedN/A

Entire subject or partial subjectN/A

Total hours/days requiredN/A

Location of WBL activity (region)N/A

WBL addtional requirementsN/A

Graduate capabilities & intended learning outcomes

Graduate Capabilities

Intended Learning Outcomes

01. Explain how mathematical models are derived from biophysical assumptions and what conclusions can be drawn from the models.
02. Apply algebraic techniques to transform equations used to specify mathematical models.
03. Use spreadsheets to investigate the behaviour of mathematical models.
04. Apply simulation techniques to investigate the behaviour of mathematical models.
05. Express mathematical arguments in a clear and concise way.

Subject options

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Start date between: and    Key dates

Melbourne (Bundoora), 2021, Semester 2, Blended


Online enrolmentYes

Maximum enrolment sizeN/A

Subject Instance Co-ordinatorYuri Nikolayevsky

Class requirements

PracticalWeek: 30 - 42
Two 1.00 h practical per week on weekdays during the day from week 30 to week 42 and delivered via face-to-face.


Assessment elementCommentsCategoryContributionHurdle% ILO*

One 2 hour written examination

N/ACentral examIndividualNo50 SILO1, SILO2, SILO4, SILO5

On-line quizzes (equivalent to 400-words in total)

N/AQuizzesIndividualNo10 SILO1

Problem class quizzes (equivalent to 400-words in total)

N/AQuizzesIndividualNo10 SILO2

Spreadsheet assignments (equivalent to 600-words in total)

N/AAssignmentIndividualNo15 SILO3, SILO4

Written assignments (equivalent to 600-words in total)

N/AAssignmentIndividualNo15 SILO1, SILO2, SILO4, SILO5