BS113-4-AU-CO:
Animal Evolution, Ecology and Behaviour

The details
2023/24
Life Sciences (School of)
Colchester Campus
Autumn
Undergraduate: Level 4
Current
Thursday 05 October 2023
Friday 15 December 2023
15
02 August 2023

 

Requisites for this module
(none)
(none)
(none)
(none)

 

(none)

Key module for

BSC C100 Biological Sciences,
BSC C101 Biological Sciences (Including Year Abroad),
BSC C102 Biological Sciences (Including Placement Year),
BSC CD00 Biological Sciences (Including Foundation Year),
BSC C520 Ecology and Environmental Biology,
BSC C521 Ecology and Environmental Biology (Including Foundation Year),
BSC C522 Ecology and Environmental Biology (Including Year Abroad),
BSC C523 Ecology and Environmental Biology (Including Placement Year),
BSC C161 Marine Biology (Including Foundation Year),
BSC C164 Marine Biology,
BSC CC60 Marine Biology (Including Year Abroad),
BSC CC64 Marine Biology (Including Placement Year),
MSCIB097 Tropical Marine Biology,
MSCIBA97 Tropical Marine Biology (Including Placement Year),
MSCIBB97 Tropical Marine Biology (Including Year Abroad)

Module description

This module will discover the diversity of animal forms and functions and the role of natural selection in determining individual behaviour such as foraging, breeding and predator escape. It will explore how variation in the behaviour of interacting individuals leads to population level ecological dynamics.

Module aims

The aims of this module are:



  • To discover the diversity of animal forms and functions and the role of natural selection in determining individual behaviour such as foraging, breeding and predator escape.

  • To explore how variation in the behaviour of interacting individuals leads to population level ecological dynamics.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module, students will be expected to be able to:



  1. Describe the diversity of animal life and evolution.

  2. Describe populations and animal population interactions.

  3. Explain the study of animal behaviour, how behaviour evolves and its effects of individual fitness and population growth.

  4. Explain the basis of ecology and its relevance to finding solutions to environmental problems.

  5. Explain fundamental ecological concepts underpinning animal population growth, life histories, demography and evolution.

  6. Demonstrate knowledge of the tight coupling between ecology, behaviour and evolution.

  7. Demonstrate skills in collecting, presenting analysing and interpreting biological data.

Module information

Every population scale interaction that we witness in nature, competition between native and invasive species or responses of mobile insects to climate change for example, is underpinned by evolution of behaviour (e.g. timing of migration) and life history (e.g. investment in growth vs reproduction). It is this realisation that nothing in ecology and evolution makes sense except in light of each other, which forms the "newest synthesis" that we shall explore together in this module.

Learning and teaching methods

This module will be delivered via:

  • One 1-hour lecture per week.
  • One revision class before the MCQ exam.
  • One revision class before the summer exam.
  • Four 3-hour practical sessions.
  • Directed Learning (i.e. self study directions).

Bibliography

The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course.
The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students.
Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   Moodle 1     5% 
Coursework   Moodle 2     5% 
Coursework   Practical 2 - SPF  21/11/2023  60% 
Practical   Practical 1 (Moodle)    30% 
Exam  MCQ exam: In-Person, Closed Book, 50 minutes during January 
Exam  Main exam: In-Person, Open Book (Restricted), 60 minutes during Summer (Main Period) 
Exam  Reassessment Main exam: In-Person, Open Book (Restricted), 60 minutes during September (Reassessment Period) 
Exam  Reassessment MCQ exam: In-Person, Closed Book, 50 minutes during September (Reassessment Period) 

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
33% 67%

Reassessment

Coursework Exam
33% 67%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Nick Aldred, email: nick.aldred@essex.ac.uk.
Dr Nick Aldred, Dr Jennifer Hoyal Cuthill, Dr Eoin O'Gorman
School Undergraduate Office, email: bsugoffice (Non essex users should add @essex.ac.uk to create the full email address)

 

Availability
Yes
No
No

External examiner

Prof Edgar Turner
University of Cambridge
Professor of Insect Ecology
Resources
Available via Moodle
Of 51 hours, 24 (47.1%) hours available to students:
27 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s), module, or event type.

 

Further information
Life Sciences (School of)

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