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PLANT SCIENCE

For Level 1 and 2 courses, please refer to entries under Biology

> Level 3
PL 3004
PLANT BIOGEOGRAPHY
CREDIT POINTS 15

Course Co-ordinator: Dr M Barker

Pre-requisite(s): BI 2012 and BI 2013

Co-requisite(s): None

Historical advances in the study of plant biogeography; global and local distributions of plant species, including ranges, boundaries and tolerances; disjunct and endemic distributions; the theory of island biogeography; threatened species and rarities; speciation and extinction; genetics and plant phylogeny; shifts in plant distributions in geological time, and due to climate change and habitat change. The role of management and inter-disciplinary working in plant biogeography.

Two 1-hour lectures, one 2-hour workshop and one 1-hour small group tutorial per week. Individual student contact time is approximately 30 hours.

To pass this course, a pass must be achieved in BOTH the theory exam and the in-course assessment.

1st Attempt: One 2 hour written exam (50%) and Coursework (50%). Coursework is made up of a species profile (20%, maximum 2 sides A4) and a mini-review of current plant biogeographical thinking (30%, maximum 2,500 words).

Resit: One 2 hour written exam (50%) and resubmission of coursework (50%).

Formative Assessment and Feedback Information

- Tutorial/workshop sessions will provide opportunity for student-student and student-tutor interaction.
- Formative assessment will be provided during this interaction and during student-led discussions and tutor-led tutorials.
- A strong emphasis will be made throughout the course on informal verbal feedback during seminar and workshop sessions.

Each student will receive individual feedback and a mark for each task. Feedback will be provided as written comments. Groups will also be given generic feedback.

PL 3303
ECOSYSTEM PROCESSES
CREDIT POINTS 15

Course Co-ordinator: Professor D Robinson

Pre-requisite(s): BI 2001 or another appropriate Level 2 biology course

Co-requisite(s): None

Primary production (The carbon cycle; Biomes; Scaling from leaf to biome); Water use (The hydrological cycle; Coupling between vegetation and atmosphere; Water in soil; Water use efficiency); Soil microbiology & Organic Matter decomposition (Decomposer organisms; Soil respiration; Decomposition kinetics; Root-microbe relations). Nutrient acquisition by plants (Nutrient demand; Nutrients in soil; Nutrient supply; Soil heterogeneity. Secondary production (Effects of grazing on nutrient cycling; Energy and resource flow between trophic levels). Ecosystem sustainability, human impacts and feedback effects. Ecosystem research methods.

The course runs over six weeks and the class meets for four sessions a week, typically two or three 2 hour lectures and a practical or data analysis session. In total, the class meets for fifteen 2 hour lectures, seven 2 hour practical classes and workshop, two quizzes and a class review session. In total, the class has about 60 hours of contact.

1st Attempt: Written exam (67%) and continuous assessment (33%), continuous assessment is based on two worksheets, one based on the practical classes and one based on the data analysis workshop.

Resit: Written exam (100%).

Formative Assessment and Feedback Information

A strong emphasis will be made throughout the course on informal verbal feedback during practicals and workshop sessions.

Each student will receive individual feedback and a mark for each task. Feedback will be provided as written comments. Groups will also be given generic feedback.

PL 3504
PLANT ENVIRONMENT INTERACTIONS
CREDIT POINTS 15

Course Co-ordinator: Dr M Barker, Professor D Salt

Pre-requisite(s): BI 2012 and BI 2013

Co-requisite(s): None

This course covers some of the major topics relating to plant interactions with their environment. It considers adaptations that have occurred in the evolution of plant structure and function with particular reference to morphological and physiological aspects pertaining to resource capture and plant survival. The course comprises a lecture series, essay topic, short project, workshops and excursions.

The course runs over six weeks, typically with 2 two hour lectures and 1 field trip or practical per week; total contact hours are 63.

To pass this course, a pass must be achieved in BOTH the theory exam and the in-course assessment.

1st Attempt: 1 two-hour written examination (67%) and in-course assessment (33%).

Resit: Two-hour written exam.

Formative Assessment and Feedback Information

A strong emphasis will be made throughout the course on informal verbal feedback during dicussions, practicals and field trips.

Each student will receive individual feedback and a mark for each task. Feedback will be provided as written comments.

PL 3804
PLANT ECOLOGY
CREDIT POINTS 15

Course Co-ordinator: Dr M Barker

Pre-requisite(s): BI 1509 or BI 2001

Co-requisite(s): None

Theories of plant community ecology: succession, gradients, niches, competition for resources, modelling ecological processes. Description of plant communities: methods of vegetation survey, plant taxonomy, classification and monitoring. Numerical approaches to the analysis of plant community composition and to the relationship between vegetation and environment.

6 to 14 hours of contact per week, composed of a mix of lectures, presentations, practical sessions and field trips. During the course there are two full day and one half day field trips. In total, contact time is about 60 hours.

1st Attempt: Written exam (60%) and continuous assessment (40%). Continuous assessment is based on a review essay and a project practical report (each contributes to half of the continuous assessment mark).

Resit: Written exam and resubmission of any failed coursework.

Formative Assessment and Feedback Information

A strong emphasis will be made throughout the course on informal verbal feedback during seminar and workshop sessions.

Each student will receive individual feedback and a mark for each task. Feedback will be provided as written comments. Groups will also be given generic feedback.

PL 3805
BIOLOGY AND ECOLOGY OF PLANT DISEASE
CREDIT POINTS 15

Course Co-ordinator: Dr S Woodward

Pre-requisite(s): BI 2012 and BI 2013

Co-requisite(s): None

This course will begin with an Introduction to Plant Pathology (causes/symptoms of disease; pathogens and pathogenesis, historical background, significance and impact of disease; pathogen structure and function, spread and survival). It will then discuss the following topics: Molecular methods in plant pathology (application of molecular techniques to detect and understand the biology of plant pathogens in managed ecosystems, the advantages and limitations of the methods); Host-Pathogen-Environment Interactions (Plant stresses and disease susceptibility; host-pathogen interactions in managed ecosystems); Plant defence mechanisms and disease control (Resistance Genes; Plant defence mechanisms including induced resistance, Nematode disease control; Microbial biocontrol; Biological crop protection for control of insect pests; General principals of crop management); Potato Pathogens: Understanding their interactions. The final week of the course will consist of lectures from specialists who work at the research and farmer level (both in-house and with visiting speakers) on the wide array of potato diseases to provide in-depth information and concomitantly show how a broad understanding of the host, the pathogen/pest and their environments is required in order to control disease.

6 1 hour lectures per week; 3 tutorials; total contact hours about 45 hours.

Course taught over 6 weeks.

1st Attempt: Written exam (70%), continuous assessment (30%). Continuous assessment is made up of a case study of a pathogen (25%) and an oral presentation of the case study (5%).

Resit: Written exam (70%), continuous assessment (30%).

NB If the student passed the continuous assessment at the 1st attempt then the marks would carry forward (30%). If the student failed the continuous assessment at the 1st attempt then they need to resubmit the case study (30%).

Formative Assessment and Feedback Information

A strong emphasis will be made throughout the course on informal verbal feedback during seminar and workshop sessions.

Each student will receive individual feedback and a mark for each task. Feedback will be provided as written comments.