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Last modified: 28 Jun 2018 10:27

Course Overview

‘Mediterranean’ ecosystems have unique characteristics, with many endemic species.

This is a 9-day field course in Catalonia, Spain, during Weeks 39, 40 (part of the Easter vacation). Cost, excluding flights, is likely to be around £480. 

You will use rapid ecosystem assessment (REA) to generate questions and answers about some important Mediterranean ecosystems. You will talk with locally-based biologists and environmental scientists.

The course will help you learn skills in REA, which will allow you to develop a fast, detailed understanding of unfamiliar ecosystems and their species.

Assessment is a group presentation (20%) and individual report (80%).

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 2
Session Second Sub Session Credit Points 7.5 credits (3.75 ECTS credits)
Campus None. Sustained Study No
  • Dr Martin Barker

What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?


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Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

Course Aims: For students to gain and develop: (a) an awareness of a range of Mediterranean ecosystems, with their corresponding biodiversity. (b) an understanding issues associated with the ecology and management of Mediterranean ecosystems. (c) direct and relevant experience in focusing on an aspect of Mediterranean ecosystems that is most relevant to the student's degree intention. Aspects include: Applied Botany, Environmental Biology, Ecology, Wilderness Management, Environmental Conservation, Community Forestry. (d) an ability to integrate themes from different disciplines. Main Learning Outcomes: 1. Achieve a substantially increased awareness and understanding of selected Mediterranean ecosystems, with their corresponding biodiversity. 2. Achieve a working knowledge of the ways in which selected Mediterranean ecosystems can be (a) researched, and (b) managed. 3. Conduct a mini-research project in at least one Mediterranean ecosystem, with a focus and level that is appropriate the student's degree. 4. Present the results of a mini-research project on selected Mediterranean ecosystem(s) to a small audience, including specialists. Content: Students will visit and study one or more of the Mediterranean ecosystems. Choice of ecosystem will be determined by the student's degree intention and level. Students will be based in the Barcelona area at the start and finish of the field course. During the bulk of the course, students will visit relevant sites in Catalonia and possibly the French Pyrenees. Teaching at each site will be led by academics from the University of Aberdeen, supported by local collaborators. Students will conduct a detailed study in their specialist area, and have opportunities to meet local researchers.

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown

More Information about Week Numbers

In light of Covid-19 and the move to blended learning delivery the assessment information advertised for courses may be subject to change. All updates for first-half session courses will be actioned no later than 1700 (GMT) on 18 September 2020. All updates for second half-session courses will be actioned in advance of second half-session teaching starting. Please check back regularly for updates.

Summative Assessments

1st Attempt: Coursework assessments 1. Mini-research project in specialist area (80%) 2. Presentation of mini-research project in specialist area (20%) Resit: None

Formative Assessment

A strong emphasis will be made throughout the course on informal verbal feedback during activities and discussions in the field. Formative assessment will be provided during the planning exercises related to the mini-projects.


Each student will receive individual feedback and a mark for each task. Feedback will be provided as written comments. The group will also be given generic feedback after the presentations of the mini-projects.

Course Learning Outcomes


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