Animal ecologists are passionate, field-orientated scientists, who work in a broad variety of industries across a diverse range of animal groups and ecosystems. This practical and exciting Field Course will introduce you to the discipline of animal ecology and engage you directly in studying animals in some of the unique coastal ecosystems of Australia. You will spend several days in the field where you will be exposed to hot topics in contemporary animal ecology research, using multiple techniques to survey animals in marine, coastal, and terrestrial habitats.
|Learning materials – Pre-recorded weekly material||1hr||Week 1||12 times|
|Fieldwork – Field course is booked to commence on Friday 18 March and finish on Thursday 24 March 2022 (6 nights). Each student cohort (3) will attend one of the two night rotations only, but will need to be available to possibly attend any of them.||24hrs||Week 3||Once Only|
|Tutorial/Workshop 1 – Weekly on campus tutorial||2hrs||Week 2||11 times|
In this course you will:
1. Discover the evolutionary and functional foundations of animal ecology;
2. Appreciate what makes the scientific study of animal ecology a rewarding and exciting endeavour;
3. Apply modern techniques for studying animals in the wild in a hands-on fashion;
4. Learn how to apply field skills to answer fundamental questions about biodiversity and conservation;
5. Value the importance of high ethical standards that underpin all work done by animal ecologists; and
6. Engage in field-based research activities that involve you in the discipline of animal ecology in a tangible and practical way.
100 Level (Introductory)
|Course Learning Outcomes On successful completion of this course, you should be able to...||Graduate Qualities Completing these tasks successfully will contribute to you becoming...|
|1||Demonstrate and apply knowledge about; a) the fundamentals of animal ecology as a scientific discipline; b) the questions it asks; c) the evolutionary processes that shape it; and d) the techniques used to study it.||Knowledgeable|
|2||Communicate effectively and professionally.||Empowered|
|3||Systematise and analyse; a) core concepts in animal ecology science; b) the adaptations of animals to their environment, c) biological and ecological levels of organisation, and d) processes that shape the structure of animal communities.||
Creative and critical thinker
Refer to the USC Glossary of terms for definitions of “pre-requisites, co-requisites and anti-requisites”.
Must be enrolled in SB303, SC320, SC012, SC107 or UC103
Standard Grading (GRD)
|High Distinction (HD), Distinction (DN), Credit (CR), Pass (PS), Fail (FL).|
A formative fieldwork notebook is completed, and reviewed, on the field course. A formative practice exam will be conducted in class. Feedback will also be given via a summative fieldwork quiz.
|Delivery mode||Task No.||Assessment Product||Individual or Group||Weighting %||What is the duration / length?||When should I submit?||Where should I submit it?|
|Week 6||Online Test (Quiz)|
|All||2||Oral||Individual and Group||30%||
10 minutes (+/- 10%).
|Week 9||Online Submission|
|All||3||Examination - Centrally Scheduled||Individual||50%||
|Exam Period||Online Test (Quiz)|
|All - Assessment Task 1:Fieldwork Quiz|
Demonstrate your understanding of key research skills and methods that are used to study animals in their environment and the ability to collect and accurately record ecological data.
An online multiple choice exam based on the research questions, ecological studies and survey methods covered on the field course.
|All - Assessment Task 2:Seminar|
Demonstrate your ability to communicate professionally and accurately the important facts and concepts associated with research activities and techniques in animal ecology.
Oral presentation introducing a chosen research question, describing the research techniques used to answer this question, and summarising the results of data collected on this topic during the Field Course. This presentation can be in the form of a standard seminar/talk supported by PowerPoint slides, and should be recorded and uploaded to Canvas.
|All - Assessment Task 3:Exam|
Demonstrate your understanding of the key concepts and techniques in animal ecology and support your practice in animal ecology.
|Product:||Examination - Centrally Scheduled|
An online exam based on the material covered in learning materials, tutorials and the field course.
A 12-unit course will have total of 150 learning hours which will include directed study hours (including online if required), self-directed learning and completion of assessable tasks. Directed study hours may vary by location. Student workload is calculated at 12.5 learning hours per one unit.
Please note: Course information, including specific information of recommended readings, learning activities, resources, weekly readings, etc. are available on the course Canvas site– Please log in as soon as possible.
You will be required to undertake field studies for one week. You will be required to wear covered footwear, hat, long-sleeved shirt and long trousers for field safety. Accommodation and food costs will be covered. Please discuss any financial hardship that might be associated with the field studies with the Course Coordinator.
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Academic integrity means that you do not engage in any activity that is considered to be academic fraud; including plagiarism, collusion or outsourcing any part of any assessment item to any other person. You are expected to be honest and ethical by completing all work yourself and indicating in your work which ideas and information were developed by you and which were taken from others. You cannot provide your assessment work to others. You are also expected to provide evidence of wide and critical reading, usually by using appropriate academic references.
In order to minimise incidents of academic fraud, this course may require that some of its assessment tasks, when submitted to Canvas, are electronically checked through Turnitin. This software allows for text comparisons to be made between your submitted assessment item and all other work to which Turnitin has access.
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