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Unit information: Ecology: Theory and Practice in 2015/16

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Unit name Ecology: Theory and Practice
Unit code BIOL31135
Credit points 10
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Professor. Wall
Open unit status Not open




School/department School of Biological Sciences
Faculty Faculty of Life Sciences

Description including Unit Aims


To focus on a series of case studies to illustrate how ecological principles can help develop sustainable solutions to the problem of the demand for resources by the human population.


The growing global human population places pressure on resources, as demand for energy, water, chemicals, food and space increases. The ecological challenge is to meet these needs in a sustainable way, while at the same time mitigating the range of serious environmental problems that result from overexploitation. In this unit, students will learn how ecological principles can help develop sustainable solutions to these problems, using a series of case study examples from aquatic and terrestrial environments.

Intended Learning Outcomes

By the end of this unit students will understand how fundamental science can assist in the solution of selected practical environmental problems. Students will be able to demonstrate the importance of ongoing management of ecosystems which have been altered by humans.

Teaching Information

Lectures, interactive seminars/workshops and independent study.

Assessment Information

End of Session exam (100%)

Reading and References

Most of the lecture material for the specific subjects considered in this Unit is taken from research papers and is not covered in any one textbook. During the lecture course you will receive details of appropriate reading material relevant to each section of the unit and will receive advice on general textbooks.