Course Outline

GEO350 Geo-ethics: Plants, Animals and People

Course Coordinator:Jennifer Carter (jcarter@usc.edu.au) School:School of Law and Society

2022Semester 1

USC Sunshine Coast

USC Moreton Bay

Blended learning Most of your course is on campus but you may be able to do some components of this course online.

Online

Online You can do this course without coming onto campus.

Please go to the USC website for up to date information on the
teaching sessions and campuses where this course is usually offered.

What is this course about?

Description

In this course you will explore the geography of life on earth at different places, spaces and scales.  You will use empirical and critical biogeography approaches during lectures and tutorials to examine contemporary topics about nature.  You will study theories and concepts about the distribution, dispersal and extinction of plants and animals; and critical, more-than-human theories and concepts about the interactions between plants, animals and people in diverse places such as the home, entertainment, education, agriculture, tourism, and conservation areas.

How will this course be delivered?

Activity Hours Beginning Week Frequency
Blended learning
Tutorial/Workshop 1 – Synchronous and scheduled face-to-face tutorial 2hrs Week 2 10 times
Seminar – Synchronous and scheduled online seminars in weeks 1, 12 and 13 to replace tutorials 2hrs Week 1 3 times
Learning materials – Asynchronous online delivery of learning materials 1hr Week 1 13 times
Online
Tutorial/Workshop 1 – Synchronous and scheduled online delivery of tutorials 2hrs Week 2 10 times
Learning materials – Asynchronous online delivery of learning materials 1hr Week 1 13 times
Seminar – Synchronous and scheduled online seminars to replace tutorials in weeks 1, 12 and 13 2hrs Week 1 3 times

Course Topics

the history of biogeography

spatial patterns in nature

biogeographic processes

humans as natural

companion species

nonhumans in education, therapy, film zoos, entertainment and agriculture

planning geo-ethical spaces and places

What level is this course?

300 Level (Graduate)

Demonstrating coherence and breadth or depth of knowledge and skills. Independent application of knowledge and skills in unfamiliar contexts. Meeting professional requirements and AQF descriptors for the degree. May require pre-requisites where discipline specific introductory or developing knowledge or skills is necessary. Normally undertaken in the third or fourth full-time study year of an undergraduate program.

What is the unit value of this course?

12 units

How does this course contribute to my learning?

Course Learning Outcomes On successful completion of this course, you should be able to... Graduate Qualities Mapping Completing these tasks successfully will contribute to you becoming... Professional Standard Mapping * Australian Learning & Teaching Council
1 Demonstrate fundamental theories and concepts linking plants, animals and people in geography and allied disciplines. Knowledgeable
Creative and critical thinker
1, 2
2 Describe how these theories and concepts manifest in different spaces, places and environments. Creative and critical thinker
Sustainability-focussed
3
3 Apply these concepts to 'real world' situations Engaged
4
4 Search, select and analyse relevant academic information and communicate findings in different formats Knowledgeable
Creative and critical thinker
6
5 Interpret data to determine the impact and interactions between plants, animals and people Knowledgeable
Sustainability-focussed
5
6 Demonstrate skills in problem definition Creative and critical thinker
Empowered
5

* Competencies by Professional Body

CODE COMPETENCY
Australian Learning & Teaching Council
1 Knowing: Demonstrate a coherent geographical understanding of trends, processes and impacts that shape Australian and other environments and/or societies at different spatial and temporal scales.
2 Knowing: Demonstrate an understanding of Geography as an academic discipline, including awareness of its concepts, history and principal subfields, whilst acknowledging the contested, provisional and situated nature of geographical understanding.
3 Thinking: Apply geographical thought creatively, critically and appropriately to specific spaces, places and/or environments.
4 Thinking: Recognise, evaluate and synthesise various views, arguments and sources of knowledge pertinent to solving environmental and social problems.
5 Investigating and problem solving: Resolve geographical questions by ethical means, applying evidence-based knowledge and appropriate research techniques, including those associated with field work.
6 Communicating: Communicate geographical perspectives and knowledge effectively to specialist and non-specialist audiences using appropriately selected written, oral and visual means.

Am I eligible to enrol in this course?

Refer to the USC Glossary of terms for definitions of “pre-requisites, co-requisites and anti-requisites”.

Pre-requisites

Not applicable

Co-requisites

Not applicable

Anti-requisites

Not applicable

Specific assumed prior knowledge and skills (where applicable)

Not applicable

How am I going to be assessed?

Grading Scale

Standard Grading (GRD)

High Distinction (HD), Distinction (DN), Credit (CR), Pass (PS), Fail (FL).

Details of early feedback on progress

The students have weekly online activities which helps them guide each week whether they are understanding the key concepts.

Assessment tasks

Delivery mode Task No. Assessment Product Individual or Group Weighting % What is the duration / length? When should I submit? Where should I submit it?
All 1a Written Piece Individual 10%
500 words per week x 2 weeks = 1000 words
Week 3 Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check
All 1b Written Piece Individual 40%
500 words x 4 weeks = 2000 words
Throughout teaching period (refer to Format) Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check
All 2 Essay Individual 50%
2000 words
Week 13 Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check
All - Assessment Task 1a:Online Activities answers
Goal:
To demonstrate fundamental concepts in studying biogeography using both empirically-based and critical thinking approaches.
Product: Written Piece
Format:
You will provide an online answer to activities that will be provided each week for weeks 1 and 2. These may be in the form of written comments on a discussion board, quizzes, and responses to video snippets or reflection tasks. You will be expected to demonstrate your understanding of the basic concepts or theory from the relevant workshop discussion each week.
Criteria:
No. Learning Outcome assessed
1
Demonstrate and apply theoretical and practical knowledge of fundamental concepts and processes that have been discussed in workshops
1
2
Demonstrate the ability to analyse readings, discussions and other information and to take an informed position on the relationship between human and non-human nature that values differing perspectives.
2 3
All - Assessment Task 1b:Online activities answers
Goal:
To demonstrate fundamental concepts in studying biogeography using both empirically-based and critical thinking approaches.
Product: Written Piece
Format:
You will provide a weekly online answer to any 4 of the 8 weekly activities (between weeks 3-10) that will be provided each week. These may be in the form of written comments on a discussion board, quizzes, and responses to video snippets or reflection tasks. You will be expected to demonstrate your understanding of the basic concepts or theory from the relevant workshop discussion each week.  

Each answer that you submit will be due on the relevant Monday at 5pm, following the lecture that the question pertains to.  In this way, you receive ongoing feedback that helps you to construct arguments and develop critical thinking about topics which will be essential for your final assessment task.
Criteria:
No. Learning Outcome assessed
1
Demonstrate and apply theoretical and practical knowledge of fundamental concepts and processes that have been discussed in workshops
1
2
Demonstrate the ability to analyse readings, discussions and other information and to take an informed position on the relationship between human and non-human nature that values differing perspectives.
2 3
All - Assessment Task 2:Final essay
Goal:
To practically apply your knowledge.

Choose a film, book, or documentary as a source text, and provide an analysis of some of the key ideas learnt in this course that are covered in the chosen text. Identify and describe the key concepts from the course that are present in the source text, and follow with an analysis of how each of these concepts presents to the reader/viewer in terms of their potential to affect or change societal attitudes.  Finally, make suggestions as to how you might use the source text to bring about more powerful societal change. 

OR

Choose a challenge in human-nonhuman interactions (e.g. companion animals, working and commodified animals, animals in agriculture, animals in the wild) and explain how you might mount a campaign for society to change social values and behaviours to bring about more (geo-)ethical social values and behaviours.
Product: Essay
Format:
Research and cite relevant literature (approximately 15 references) that supports your interpretation of the concepts in that text (for example, analyses of similar texts that are written in journal articles) or that support your campaign and how to change society on this challenge (e.g. educational or political campaign).

Your analysis should also be based on peer-reviewed literature from academic journals, books, and scientific grey literature.  You should use only minimal web sites and these must be credible sources e.g. government research reports.
Criteria:
No. Learning Outcome assessed
1
Demonstrate and apply theoretical and practical knowledge of fundamental concepts and processes that have been discussed and observed
1
2
Demonstrate organisation and the ability to analyse a variety of information types into key concepts
3 5
3
Demonstrate the ability to take an informed position on the relationship between human and non-human nature in different spaces and places
2 5 6
4
Search, select and correctly reference relevant academic and verbal information and personal observations
4
5
Demonstrate structure, clarity and style of writing appropriate for the audience
2

Directed study hours

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.

What resources do I need to undertake this course?

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.

Prescribed text(s) or course reader

There are no required/recommended resources for this course.

Specific requirements

You are responsible for the production of the final written piece.

How are risks managed in this course?

Health and safety risks for this course have been assessed as low. It is your responsibility to review course material, search online, discuss with lecturers and peers and understand the health and safety risks associated with your specific course of study and to familiarise yourself with the University’s general health and safety principles by reviewing the online induction training for students, and following the instructions of the University staff.

What administrative information is relevant to this course?

Assessment: Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is the ethical standard of university participation.  It ensures that students graduate as a result of proving they are competent in their discipline.  This is integral in maintaining the value of academic qualifications. Each industry has expectations and standards of the skills and knowledge within that discipline and these are reflected in assessment.

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.

Assessment: Additional Requirements

Your eligibility for supplementary assessment in a course is dependent of the following conditions applying:

The final mark is in the percentage range 47% to 49.4%
The course is graded using the Standard Grading scale
You have not failed an assessment task in the course due to academic misconduct.

Assessment: Submission penalties

Late submission of assessment tasks may be penalised at the following maximum rate: 
- 5% (of the assessment task's identified value) per day for the first two days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. 
- 10% (of the assessment task's identified value) for the third day - 20% (of the assessment task's identified value) for the fourth day and subsequent days up to and including seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. 
- A result of zero is awarded for an assessment task submitted after seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. Weekdays and weekends are included in the calculation of days late. To request an extension you must contact your course coordinator to negotiate an outcome.

SafeUSC

USC is committed to a culture of respect and providing a safe and supportive environment for all members of our community. For immediate assistance on campus contact SafeUSC by phone: 07 5430 1168 or using the SafeZone app. For general enquires contact the SafeUSC team by phone 07 5456 3864 or email safe@usc.edu.au.

The SafeUSC Specialist Service is a Student Wellbeing service that provides free and confidential support to students who may have experienced or observed behaviour that could cause fear, offence or trauma. To contact the service call 07 5430 1226 or email studentwellbeing@usc.edu.au.

Study help

For help with course-specific advice, for example what information to include in your assessment, you should first contact your tutor, then your course coordinator, if needed.

If you require additional assistance, the Learning Advisers are trained professionals who are ready to help you develop a wide range of academic skills. Visit the Learning Advisers web page for more information, or contact Student Central for further assistance: +61 7 5430 2890 or studentcentral@usc.edu.au.

Wellbeing Services

Student Wellbeing provide free and confidential counselling on a wide range of personal, academic, social and psychological matters, to foster positive mental health and wellbeing for your academic success.

To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email studentwellbeing@usc.edu.au or call 07 5430 1226.

AccessAbility Services

Ability Advisers ensure equal access to all aspects of university life. If your studies are affected by a disability, learning disorder mental health issue, injury or illness, or you are a primary carer for someone with a disability or who is considered frail and aged, AccessAbility Services can provide access to appropriate reasonable adjustments and practical advice about the support and facilities available to you throughout the University.

To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email AccessAbility@usc.edu.au or call 07 5430 2890.

Links to relevant University policy and procedures

For more information on Academic Learning & Teaching categories including:

  • Assessment: Courses and Coursework Programs
  • Review of Assessment and Final Grades
  • Supplementary Assessment
  • Administration of Central Examinations
  • Deferred Examinations
  • Student Academic Misconduct
  • Students with a Disability

Visit the USC website: https://www.usc.edu.au/explore/policies-and-procedures#academic-learning-and-teaching

Student Charter

USC is committed to excellence in teaching, research and engagement in an environment that is inclusive, inspiring, safe and respectful. The Student Charter sets out what students can expect from the University, and what in turn is expected of students, to achieve these outcomes.

General Enquiries

  • In person:
    • USC Sunshine Coast - Student Central, Ground Floor, Building C, 90 Sippy Downs Drive, Sippy Downs
    • USC Moreton Bay - Service Centre, Ground Floor, Foundation Building, Gympie Road, Petrie
    • USC SouthBank - Student Central, Building A4 (SW1), 52 Merivale Street, South Brisbane
    • USC Gympie - Student Central, 71 Cartwright Road, Gympie
    • USC Fraser Coast - Student Central, Student Central, Building A, 161 Old Maryborough Rd, Hervey Bay
    • USC Caboolture - Student Central, Level 1 Building J, Cnr Manley and Tallon Street, Caboolture
  • Tel:+61 7 5430 2890
  • Email:studentcentral@usc.edu.au