BIO2029 : Vertebrate Biology
- Offered for Year: 2017/18
- Module Leader(s): Dr Richard Bevan
- Lecturer: Dr Aileen Mill, Dr Christopher Redfern
- Owning School: Natural and Environmental Sciences
- Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
|Semester 2 Credit Value:||20|
To outline the evolution of the vertebrates by reference to the diversity of form and function shown by both fossil and present-day species, including their morphology, physiology, ecology and behaviour; use the vertebrates as an example group through which to illustrate the principles of phylogenetic reconstruction using cladistics; develop skills in dissection and illustration; to build on related Stage 1 modules (BIO1002, BIO1005, BIO1007).
The origins of the vertebrates and the systematics of fish are dealt with in BIO1002 and BIO1007.
Outline Of Syllabus
Our knowledge of the vertebrate fossil record and all aspects of the biology of living vertebrates give them an importance in biology quite apart from human membership of this group. The wealth of information available enables us to investigate evolution, function and mechanism across a diverse group of familiar organisms. We also give instruction in dissection technique and anatomical drawing, two skills not much practiced elsewhere in the curriculum.
The origin of vertebrates; evolution if jawless and jawed fish; fish function (locomotion, respiration, reproduction, feeding); present day diversity of fishes; evolution of amphibian and reptiles; origins of birds and mammals.
Avian diversity and classification; Bird function (flight, feeding, respiration and reproduction); Bird migration and navigation; Bird communication (vocalisations, plumage and displays).
Key characteristics of mammals; Monotremes and marsupials; Placental mammal diversity & systematics; Mammalian adaptations (feeding, locomotion, and reproduction).
Secondary adaptation to the aquatic environment: ecology, physiology & behaviour of seabirds, seals & cetacean
Anatomy of amphibian (dissection)
Thoracic and abdominal anatomy of birds (dissection)
Mammalian circulatory system and general internal anatomy (dissection)
Diving physiology (breath hold practical)
CAUTION: THIS MODULE INVOLVES CARRYING OUT DISSECTIONS. STUDENTS WHO FEEL UNABLE TO CARRY OUT SUCH WORK SHOULD NOT TAKE THIS MODULE. STUDENTS ARE CAUTIONED TO BE UP TO DATE WITH TETANUS PROTECTION.
|Guided Independent Study||Assessment preparation and completion||1||2:00||2:00||Final Exam|
|Guided Independent Study||Assessment preparation and completion||1||30:00||30:00||Revision for final exam|
|Scheduled Learning And Teaching Activities||Lecture||24||1:00||24:00||N/A|
|Guided Independent Study||Directed research and reading||54||1:00||54:00||N/A|
|Scheduled Learning And Teaching Activities||Practical||4||3:00||12:00||N/A|
|Guided Independent Study||Independent study||1||30:00||30:00||Study of lectures, Recap, Blackboard etc.|
|Guided Independent Study||Independent study||4||3:00||12:00||Practical assessments and assessment preparation (Blackboard tests and formative assessment)|
|Guided Independent Study||Independent study||4||3:00||12:00||Practical preparation|
|Guided Independent Study||Independent study||24||1:00||24:00||Lecture follow up|
Teaching Rationale And Relationship
Lectures provide a conceptual understanding of and evidence for patterns in diversity, the underlying ecological theory of patterns and processes and the need for and design of conservation action at different scales; the practicals give students experience of analysing ecological datasets and exploring simulated scenarios using advanced numerical and computer based applications; the fieldwork classes expand on some biodiversity and conservation issues
The lectures provide a framework of principles, factual background and example material. The strongly factual basis of this module requires an above average amount of private study time. The three dissection practicals provide sufficient exposure for students to become proficient in this practical skill (with the help of demonstrators), and to become practised in the production of anatomical drawings. The diving physiology practical gives the student experience of measuring dynamic processes such as heart rate. Directed self-study of text books, papers and websites provide additional insights.
The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners
|Computer assessment||2||M||10||Blackboard test - assessment of Dissection.|
|Computer assessment||2||M||20||Blackboard test - assessment of Dissection|
|Computer assessment||2||M||20||Blackboard test - Breath hold diving practical|
|Computer assessment||2||M||Blackboard test - assessment of first dissection to allow students to learn skills and to practise the representation of dissection.|
Assessment Rationale And Relationship
The exam format gives students the opportunity to demonstrate their breadth of knowledge and their deeper understanding of the lecture material. The first dissection is formatively assessed to encourage learning. The remaining practical sessions are assessed by Blackboard tests, these test the knowledge and understanding gained during the practical sessions.
- Reading List Website : rlo.ncl.ac.uk