BIOEB503-22A (HAM)

Terrestrial Ecology

15 Points

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Division of Health Engineering Computing & Science
School of Science
Ecology, Biodiversity and Animal Behaviour

Staff

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: cheryl.ward@waikato.ac.nz

You can contact staff by:

  • Calling +64 7 838 4466 select option 1, then enter the extension.
  • Extensions starting with 4, 5, 9 or 3 can also be direct dialled:
    • For extensions starting with 4: dial +64 7 838 extension.
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    • For extensions starting with 3: dial +64 7 2620 + the last 3 digits of the extension e.g. 3123 = +64 7 262 0123.
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Paper Description

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This paper aims to develop students' understanding of ecological theory with a focus on terrestrial ecosystems, and of how theory can inform ecosystem management and our understanding of environmental problems. The material is drawn from both local (NZ) and international literature. As well as exploring key theories and concepts, the paper has a strong focus on developing the skills needed by research students. These skills include literature search, critical review of scientific papers, conceptual synthesis, application of concepts and theories to novel problems, audiovisual presentation, and written expression.The topics covered span a gamut of biological organization from organism-level (physiological ecology) through to ecosystems.
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Paper Structure

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The material will be taught mostly in seminar form. Several published research papers will be assigned each week as reading material--students will be rostered to either (a) present a brief audiovisual talk on one of the papers, or (b) contribute to discussion of the week's papers in Perusall. There will be a 1-day fieldtrip on Thursday 24th March.
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Learning Outcomes

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Students who successfully complete the paper should be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of major theories and concepts in relation to terrestrial ecosystems
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  • Apply ecological concepts and methods to address novel problems
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  • Recognize applications of ecological theory to problems of resource management, conservation, restoration, and global change
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  • Use journal alerts to locate scientific papers of interest
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  • Critically appraise ecological literature
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  • Understand the process of peer review in ecology
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  • Communicate scientific ideas and information clearly and concisely
    Linked to the following assessments:
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Assessment

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The dates indicated for assessment procedures will normally be adhered to. Any changes to the dates will be made in consultation with the class at least one week prior to the original date. Individuals handing in work late must gain approval from the appropriate lecturer otherwise they may be penalised.
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Assessment Components

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The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 60:40. There is no final exam. The final exam makes up 40% of the overall mark.

The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 60:40 or 0:0, whichever is more favourable for the student. The final exam makes up either 40% or 0% of the overall mark.

Component DescriptionDue Date TimePercentage of overall markSubmission MethodCompulsory
1. Weekly participation
40
  • In Class: In Lecture
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
2. Field trip report
10 Apr 2022
5:00 PM
8
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
3. Practice exam questions
4
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
4. Mock peer review
5 Jun 2022
5:00 PM
8
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
5. Exam
40
Assessment Total:     100    
Failing to complete a compulsory assessment component of a paper will result in an IC grade
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Required and Recommended Readings

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Required Readings

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Four research papers will be assigned each week. There is no textbook.
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Online Support

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This paper has a Moodle page (http://elearn.waikato.ac.nz) where you will be able to access pdfs of lecture notes and Powerpoints, lecture recordings, and assessment materials. There are also discussion forums where you can both ask and answer questions.

PLEASE NOTE: Moodle will be used for class notices etc and it is your responsibility to check the site regularly. Instructions provided on Moodle and in lectures are considered to be given to the class as a whole.


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Workload

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2 hours contact time each week (10 x 2 = 20 hours)

5 hours preparation time each week (10 x 5 = 50 hours)

Fieldtrip (6 hours)

Fieldtrip report (6 hours)

Two practice exam questions on Moodle (2 x 1 = 2 hours)

Mock peer review exercise (4 hours)

Exam prep (10 hours)

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Linkages to Other Papers

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Prerequisite(s)

Prerequisite papers: BIOEB303 or BIOL503 or an approved equivalent course covering key concepts in ecology and evolution.

Corequisite(s)

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Restriction(s)

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