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Module

MST1201 : Marine Biology

  • Offered for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Heather Sugden
  • Lecturer: Dr Jane Delany, Dr Sara Marsham, Dr Benjamin Wigham, Professor Tony Clare
  • Owning School: Natural and Environmental Sciences
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semesters
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0

Aims

To enable students to gain knowledge of the fundamental processes and functions of key marine ecosystems. To provide an understanding of the importance of marine ecosystems in relation to their distribution and productivity, and introduce students to different organismal processes such as feeding strategies, reproductive strategies and adaptations to biotic and abiotic factors. To relate knowledge of organisms in different ecosystems to each other and compare organisms in different environments. To appreciate the specific uniqueness of the plankton to marine systems and their role in life-history processes, marine food-webs and their responses to environmental change.

Outline Of Syllabus

30 x 1 hour lectures (plus 1 x 1hr revision lecture) based on the following themes:

1.       Diversity of Marine Habitats
2.       Patterns of distribution of marine fauna and flora
3.       Controls of distribution – environmental and biological interactions
4.       The importance of plankton in marine systems
5.       Zooplankton distribution and behaviour
6.       Marine Food-webs

Teaching Methods

Please note that module leaders are reviewing the module teaching and assessment methods for Semester 2 modules, in light of the Covid-19 restrictions. There may also be a few further changes to Semester 1 modules. Final information will be available by the end of August 2020 in for Semester 1 modules and the end of October 2020 for Semester 2 modules.

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials301:0030:00Online material released via Canvas
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion15:005:00Completion of summative 2 coursework assessment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion212:0024:00Completion of formative and summative 1 coursework assessment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion300:3015:00Revision of course material for summative assessment 2
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study302:0060:00Lecture follow up: ReCap and supplementary material
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study302:0060:00Lecture follow up: Wider reading
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesModule talk61:006:00Topic driven discussion and consolidation of asynchronous content
Total200:00
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures are designed to give students a broad factual knowledge of the diversity of marine habitats and the patterns of distribution of marine organisms. The lectures will focus on the controls of distribution including environmental and biological interactions. They will also cover the importance of both phyto- and zooplankton in marine systems and the conservation and management of the marine environment.

End-of -theme synchronous online module talks will allow for consolidation of topic-focussed material during online discussion with teaching staff.

Directed research, through the use of supplementary online material and activities, and wider reading of the scientific literature will support the information received through asynchronous lectures. Independent study will be guided through the use of these materials and online access to key texts/eBooks. Students will be encouraged to become more independent in their learning at this stage in their programmes to develop key skills such as Active Learning, Goal Setting and Action Planning, Decision Making, and Initiative, which they will require at Levels 5 and 6.

Assessment preparation and completion will allow students to fully prepare for both their formative and summative coursework assessments. They will have the opportunity to consolidate and build upon knowledge gained in the asynchronous and synchronous sessions.

Alternatives will be offered to students unable to be present-in-person due to the prevailing C-19 circumstances.

Students should consult their individual timetable for up-to-date delivery information.

Assessment Methods

Please note that module leaders are reviewing the module teaching and assessment methods for Semester 2 modules, in light of the Covid-19 restrictions. There may also be a few further changes to Semester 1 modules. Final information will be available by the end of August 2020 in for Semester 1 modules and the end of October 2020 for Semester 2 modules.

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written exercise1M301,000 word (or equivalent) summative coursework 1
Computer assessment1M30Summative coursework 2 Part 1 - online MCQ quiz
Essay1M401500 word summative coursework 2 Part 2
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Written exercise1M1000 word (or equivalent) formative coursework 1
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The two 1000-word (or equivalent) pieces of formative and summative coursework will assess student’s knowledge of the diversity of marine habitats, the patterns of distribution of marine organisms within these habitats and environmental and biological controls on distribution. In addition, student’s use of the relevant literature to support their ideas and their ability to present information in an appropriate scientific format will be examined.

The online MCQ quiz and essay will assess the level of breadth and depth of knowledge and understanding of all aspects of the module, including incorporation of additional online resources and student wider reading.

Reading Lists

Timetable