Graduate Diploma Ecology


Attendance
Part Time
Award
Graduate Diploma



This Graduate Diploma in Ecology consists of a range of Honours level units covering topics in Ecology, Evolutionary Biology and Conservation Biology. The course gives you the chance to build on your undergraduate study and develop a deeper understanding of Ecology as well as an excellent range of transferrable skills.

The Diploma is great preparation for further study or a variety of exciting careers – whatever your path, you’ll have the chance to customise the course with optional modules in topics like Aquatic Ecology, GIS Skills, and Environmental Politics and Policy Making. You’ll also be trained in field work, team work, data mining and analysis, critical writing, and communication.

We have very strong academic expertise in Ecology, based around UEA’s Centre for Ecology, Evolution and Conservation (CEEC) – one of the largest groups of its kind in Europe with strong links to major institutions like the RSPB and CEFAS.

Overview

The Graduate Diploma in Ecology combines a selection of honours level units specifically designed to give you a strong training in ecological theory and skills.

The programme focuses primarily in the areas of population ecology and conservation biology, but is sufficiently flexible to enable you to strengthen your knowledge in other areas of ecology. Topics include: the functioning of aquatic, marine and terrestrial ecosystems; the importance of community structure, succession and population dynamics; the processes of predation, competition and other plant/animal interactions; population responses to natural environments and man-induced stress; the current research agenda in ecology, evolution and conservation; and the potential contribution of integrating sustainable development with biodiversity conservation.

The teaching staff are all members of the Centre for Ecology, Evolution and Conservation (CEEC), a multi-disciplinary centre that comprises researchers in ecology and conservation across the University. Many of the lecturers are internationally recognised researchers in their discipline, and with ‘research-led’ taught units you will benefit from learning at the ‘cutting-edge’ of the discipline. You will also have the opportunity to take one unit in any field of study taught at the University in the form of a ‘free-choice’ unit.

The Graduate Diploma is specifically designed to ensure you will develop a wide-range of transferable skills, which will apply to any career or further graduate study at MSc or PhD level. You will gain skills in communication, information technology, data mining and analysis, fieldwork, team work, critical writing, reasoning and time management. Courses are taught through a combination of lectures, seminars and field work and assessment is in the form of coursework, presentations, projects and examinations. Throughout the programme you will be expected to undertake search and selection of scientific literature and data, use information technology for scientific study of ecological processes and problems and demonstrate field-based skills.

Course Modules

Students must study the following modules for 20 credits:

Name Code Credits

POPULATION ECOLOGY AND MANAGEMENT

We live in a human dominated era recently designated "the Anthropocene". Humans harvest more than half of the primary productivity of the planet, many resources are over-exploited or depleted (e.g. fisheries) never before it was so important to correctly manage natural resources for an exponentially growing human population. It is, thus, fundamental to predict where other species occur and the sizes of their populations (abundance). Population Ecology it is an area dedicated to the dynamics of population development. In this module we will look closely at how populations are regulated, from within through density dependent factors and, from external density independent factors. We start the module with a global environmental change perspective to the management of populations and the factors that affect the population size. We then extend these ideas to help us understand population properties and processes both intra-specifically and inter-specifically. Finally we examine several management applications where we show that a good understanding of the population modelling is essential to correctly manage natural resources on the planet. Practicals will be based on statistical or modelling projects and will provide a strong training in both subject specific and transferrable skills.

ENV-5014A

20

Students will select 20 credits from the following modules:

Name Code Credits

AQUATIC ECOLOGY

An analysis of how chemical, physical and biological influences shape the biological communities of rivers, lakes and estuaries in temperate and tropical regions. There is an important practical component to this module that includes laboratory work and three field visits. The first piece of course work involves statistical analysis of class data. The module can be taken alongside hydrology or geochemical modules, it fits well with other ecology modules and can fit well with modules in development studies. Pre-requisite requirements are: An A-level in a biological subject, a biologically biased access course or any 1st year ecology module in ENV or BIO. Students must have a background in basic statistical analysis of data. Lectures will show how the chemical and physical features of freshwaters influence their biological communities. Students may attend video screenings that complement lectures with examples of aquatic habitats in the tropics. To do well in this module, students need to show that they can use primary literature to illustrate or contradict ideas introduced in lectures: There will be one formal session that shows how to do this. Practical work is an important part of this Module and is an opportunity to develop skills in taxonomy mainly using microscopes, chemical analysis of freshwaters, field observation, working in small groups, mini-lecture presentation, writing a research proposal and statistical analysis of ecological data. If interested in a career in ecology, the usual route is via a higher degree (Masters or PhD), for which a first or 2:1 is needed. This might lead into research or management work, either in an academically orientated environment or in industry. An alternative path is via casual or voluntary work leading ultimately into conservation or management, but bear in mind that many committed and keen people follow the same route and competition for permanent and paid jobs can be intense. There are also opportunities to enter relevant employment directly after graduation. The Environment Agency, which is responsible for the management, monitoring and legal regulation of many aspects of freshwater, estuaries and coastal waters, is a potential employer. Consulting engineers and many multinational companies have environmental departments that tackle aquatic projects. For this type of work, students might combine ecological modules with management options, or with more physical sciences such as soils, hydrology, hydrogeology, water resources, oceanography and environmental chemistry. Careers in international development on the natural resources side may also benefit from a background in freshwater science.

ENV-5001A

20

BEHAVIOURAL ECOLOGY

In this module, the interrelationships between animal behaviour, ecology and evolution will be explored. Students will examine how behaviour has evolved to maximise survival and reproduction in the natural environment. Darwinian principles will provide the theoretical framework, within which the module will seek to explain the ultimate function of animal behaviours. Concepts and examples will be developed through the lecture series, exploring behaviours in the context of altruism, optimality, foraging, and particularly reproduction, the key currency of evolutionary success. In parallel with the lectures, students will design, conduct, analyse and present their own research project, collecting original data to answer a question about the adaptive significance of behaviour.

BIO-5010B

20

BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION AND HUMAN SOCIETY

The global biodiversity crisis threatens mass species loss. What are the implications for society? How can communities solve this problem in a world that is facing other challenges of climate change, food security and justice? This inter-disciplinary module focused on the interactions between biodiversity and human societies is designed for students of Geography, Environmental Science, Ecology and International Development who have an interest in biodiversity. The module adopts a rigorous evidence-based approach. Classes first critically examine the human drivers of biodiversity loss and the importance of biodiversity to human society, to understand how underlying perspectives and motivations influence approaches to conservation. We then examine conflicts between human society and conservation and how these potentially can be resolved, reviewing institutions and potential instruments for biodiversity conservation in both Europe and developing countries. Although particularly relevant to Ecology students with an interest in biodiversity conservation, the module is also suitable for Environmental Science or Geography students who have not taken ecological modules; where a simple understanding of ecological principles is important to understanding material, these will be reviewed in class. There are no formal pre-requisites. The module is particularly relevant for students who have previously taken one or other of: ENV-5014A Population Ecology and Management; ENV-5002B Environmental Politics and Policy Making; BIO- 5014B Community, Ecosystem and Macro-Ecology; or DEV-5013Y Natural Resources and Development. At Level 6 it is complementary to: ENV-6012B Natural Resources and Environmental Economics; ENV-6024B Science, Society and Sustainability; or DEV-6005B Contemporary Issues in Resource Development and Conservation.

ENV-6006A

20

BIOLOGICAL OCEANOGRAPHY AND MARINE ECOLOGY

This module examines the microbial processes that underpin our dependence on the marine environment for 'services' such as climate modulation and nutrient regeneration. The module will cover the evolution, biodiversity and molecular ecology of bacteria, diatoms, coccolithophores and nitrogen fixers, and the physiology and distribution of zooplankton. Example ecosystems such as the Antarctic, mid ocean gyres and Eastern Boundary Upwelling Systems will be studied in detail and predictions of the impact of environmental change (increasing temperature, decreasing pH, decreasing oxygen, and changes in nutrient supply) on marine ecosystem dynamics will be examined. Biological oceanographic methods will be critically evaluated. The module will include a reading week in week 7 and employability visits to the Centre for the Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (CEFAS) and British Antarctic Survey (BAS).

ENV-6005A

20

COMMUNITY, ECOSYSTEM AND MACRO-ECOLOGY

This module introduces the major community concepts and definitions, before looking in some detail at community patterns and processes including: species interactions; energy flows and productivity; and the hierarchy of drivers influencing community assembly, structure and diversity. Progression through these topics culminates in a macro-ecological perspective on community patterns and biodiversity. Throughout the module, there is an emphasis on the relevance of ecological theory and the fundamental science to the current environmental and biodiversity crisis. Anthropogenic impacts on natural communities through land-use, non-native species and pathogens, and climate change, are a recurrent theme underpinning the examples we draw upon.

BIO-5014B

20

CONSERVATION, ECOLOGY AND BIODIVERSITY IN THE TROPICS (FIELDCOURSE)

This module is for students on relevant courses in the Schools of BIO, ENV, DEV and NAT. NOTE: There will be a significant additional cost to this module to cover the costs of transportation and accommodation in the field. Costs will be detailed at an initial meeting for interested students and clearly advertised. Conservation ecology and biodiversity are central areas of research in the biological sciences and they share many theories, concepts and scientific methods. This module intends to take a practical approach to the commonalities in these areas using a combination of seminar work and fieldwork. The seminars will develop ideas in tropical biology and students will research issues affecting conservation of biodiversity in the tropics, considering the species ecology and the habitats, threats and challenges. There will be a significant component of small group work and directed, independent learning. The field component of this module will be a two week residential field trip to the tropics, one of two field sites (depending on numbers of students and availability).The field sites are run by expert field ecologists and during the two weeks we will explore the local environment, learn about the ecology of the landscape and about the species that inhabit the area. We will develop and run practical sessions on survey and census techniques, use of technology in modern field biology and the role of protected areas in species conservation. Students will conduct original research on the field trip, informed by prior research at UEA, to gain a deeper understanding of an aspect of tropical biology. There will be an assessed presentation on the field trip and many opportunities to develop the students own interests. All student participants will take an active role in the organisation and running of the module in order to gain project management and field logistics experience. Students will be responsible for the procurement, storage and transport of field equipment on the way to the field site and of samples on the return to the UK. Students will gain experience of travelling to a remote area and of working through licensing and customs processes. At the end of the module a report is written on the field project in the style of a journal article addressing specific questions in ecology conservation or biodiversity. Throughout the module students will be expected to maintain a modern-media record of their project from the initial desk based work at UEA, through the field component to outcomes and reporting.

BIO-5020K

20

ECOLOGY RESEARCH PROJECT

THIS MODULE IS ONLY AVAILABLE TO STUDENTS ON ECOLOGY DEGREE PROGRAMMES. Students design and undertake an independent research project under the supervision of staff members from the Centre for Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation (CEEC). Students may choose to conduct fieldwork in the summer preceding the 3rd year or during the school year.

BIO-6022Y

40

ENVIRONMENTAL ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY

This module is designed to teach skills necessary for the acquisition of good quality chemical data in environmental systems, and in the interpretation of this data. The module will focus on the collection of environmental samples for chemical analysis, methods of chemical analysis and the analytical and mathematical techniques used for data quality control. There will be a large component of practical work. This module will be particularly relevant for those wishing to do a chemistry-related project later in their degree. TEACHING AND LEARNING The module is structured around practical classes which will focus on the planning and implementation of field sampling, the preparation, storage and chemical analysis of environmental samples and the subsequent interpretation of the data acquired. Lectures will be used to provide supporting information for this exercise and more general information on broader aspects of analytical chemistry not covered in the practical classes. During the first half of the module, practical work will be based around analysis of samples collected by the class from UEA Broad and the River Yare. The second half of the module will be an independent study (mini-project) exercise, in which small groups will conduct more detailed investigations of the chemistry of the natural water bodies around UEA campus. There will be weekly non-assessed feedback on laboratory results during the module and a feed-forward formative assessment associated with mini-project topic selection. COURSE CONTENT: The module will cover field sampling strategies and techniques for preparing and storing chemical samples. There will be a strong focus on laboratory chemical analysis and on the mathematical manipulation of raw laboratory results, including quality control of data and critical comparison of results obtained using different methods. Interpretation of chemical data in its environmental context will also be covered. CAREER PROSPECTS The skills taught in this module have direct relevance to careers involving chemical analysis, with potential employers including the Environment Agency, environmental consultancies and research organizations (including postgraduate degree programmes). The broader skills associated with the use of critical analysis and independent and group work are widely valued in a wide range of professions.

ENV-5027B

20

ENVIRONMENTAL POLITICS AND POLICY MAKING

The most significant obstacles to problem solving are often political, not scientific or technological. This module examines the theoretical and empirical development of contemporary environmental politics. It is structured to analyse these issues from different theoretical perspectives, particularly theories of power and public policy making. The module is focused on dynamic examples of environmental politics and policy making at UK, EU and international levels. The module encourages and supports student-led learning by enabling students to develop their own theoretical interpretations of real world examples of politics. These are explored in seminar presentations and in an extended (4000 word) case study essay. The module assumes no prior knowledge of politics/social sciences.

ENV-5002B

20

EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY

This module investigates the principles of evolutionary biology, covering various sub-disciplines, i.e. adaptive evolution, population ecology, molecular and population genetics, speciation, biogeography, systematics, and finishing with an overview of Biodiversity. This module will enable you to understand, analyse and evaluate the fundamentals of evolutionary biology and be able to synthesise the various components into an overall appreciation of how evolution works. Key topics and recent research will be used to highlight advances in the field and inspire thought. Weekly interactive workshops will explore a number of the conceptual issues indepth through discussions, modelling and problem solving.

BIO-5008B

20

FIELD ECOLOGY

Students explore the ecology of moorlands, bogs, sand dunes, rocky shores, estuaries and woodlands. Students should develop skills in identifying plants and animals using scientific keys, carrying out quantitative surveys and statistically analysing their data. Strong emphasis is placed on student-lead project work. The bulk of the teaching takes place on a two week field course in Western Ireland, that runs immediately before the start of the Autumn Semester.

BIO-5013A

20

GIS SKILLS FOR PROJECT WORK

This module builds upon the introduction to the use of GIS provided in the first year Research and Field Skills module (ENV-4004Y), focusing on how students can obtain their own data (both from a wide range of online sources and in the field), integrate it together and then undertake analysis and presentation tasks. Such skills are particularly important for the final year projects (ENV-6021A) undertaken by many students. Skills in GIS are also valued by many prospective employers across public, private and non-profit sectors, and also for further study at MSc or PhD level. The module will review the different techniques that can be used to create and edit data in a GIS, as well as existing digital databases (both UK and global) from which map data can be extracted and downloaded. ESRI ArcGIS will be the main software used, but there will also be an introduction to open source tools such as QGIS. The module will emphasize issues of data quality (e.g. uncertainty and accuracy) as they apply to spatial data and introduce the use of scripting tools (e.g. Python) as a way of documenting and efficiently repeating more complex analysis procedures. To make links with project work and employability there will also be case studies of GIS use in the workplace. Teaching will consist of a one-hour lectures and a three-hour practical class each week. The lectures will cover key concepts, data sources and techniques in GIS, with a particular emphasis on environmental applications. These will be reinforced by practical exercises mainly using the ArcGIS software. Students should expect to spend a significant amount of time outside of scheduled classes on their formative and summative coursework.

ENV-5028B

20

POPULATION ECOLOGY AND MANAGEMENT

We live in a human dominated era recently designated "the Anthropocene". Humans harvest more than half of the primary productivity of the planet, many resources are over-exploited or depleted (e.g. fisheries) never before it was so important to correctly manage natural resources for an exponentially growing human population. It is, thus, fundamental to predict where other species occur and the sizes of their populations (abundance). Population Ecology it is an area dedicated to the dynamics of population development. In this module we will look closely at how populations are regulated, from within through density dependent factors and, from external density independent factors. We start the module with a global environmental change perspective to the management of populations and the factors that affect the population size. We then extend these ideas to help us understand population properties and processes both intra-specifically and inter-specifically. Finally we examine several management applications where we show that a good understanding of the population modelling is essential to correctly manage natural resources on the planet. Practicals will be based on statistical or modelling projects and will provide a strong training in both subject specific and transferrable skills.

ENV-5014A

20

SUSTAINABILITY, SOCIETY AND BIODIVERSITY

Striking a balance between societal development, economic growth and environmental protection has proven challenging and oftentimes contentious. The concepts of `sustainability' and `sustainable development' have been coined to denote processed aiming to achieve this balance. Yet this has been hampered by contestation and ambiguity surrounding these concepts. This module introduces sustainable development, and examines why sustainability is so difficult to achieve, bringing together social and ecological perspectives. This module considers sustainability in theory and practice by examining the relationships between environment and society, through the contributions of a variety of social science disciplines. It also explores sustainability from an ecological perspective, introducing a range of concepts relevant to the structure and functioning of the biosphere and topics ranging from landscape and population ecology, to behavioural, physiological, molecular, genetic and chemical ecology. This module is assessed by coursework and an examination. TEACHING AND LEARNING A series of lectures in this module considers sustainability in theory and practice by examining the relationships between environment and society, drawing upon contributions from social science disciplines and perspectives (e.g. politics, health assessment, participation). These lectures, complemented by seminars and practicals introduce sustainable development, explore how interpretations have evolved over time, analyse how these are used by groups and interests in society, and examine the challenges of its implementation. These are followed by lectures which consider interactions between human societies and natural ecosystems, the anthropogenic impacts on biomes, ecosystems, communities, populations and the genetic diversity of individuals. The introduce approaches and ideas fundamental to modern quantitative conservation ecology. The practicals include an introduction to ecological communities, measuring ecological diversity, elementary statistical analysis, field exercises involving terrestrial environments and field trip to a nature reserve to examine relationships between landscape management and/or one or more approaches to measuring biological diversity. Self-directed reading provides opportunities for the students on this module to explore and reflect on these and other aspects in more detail. This module is intended to give you a flavour of the issues, themes and considerations relating to biodiversity, ecosystem services and human development. It does not require in-depth prior knowledge of social sciences, biology chemistry or physics.

ENV-4006B

20

Students will select modules worth 20 credits from the course catalogue with the approval of their School

Students will select credits from the following modules:

Name Code Credits

Students will select credits from the following modules:

Name Code Credits

Students must study the following modules for 20 credits:

Name Code Credits

Students will select 40 credits from the following modules:

Name Code Credits

AQUATIC ECOLOGY

An analysis of how chemical, physical and biological influences shape the biological communities of rivers, lakes and estuaries in temperate and tropical regions. There is an important practical component to this module that includes laboratory work and three field visits. The first piece of course work involves statistical analysis of class data. The module can be taken alongside hydrology or geochemical modules, it fits well with other ecology modules and can fit well with modules in development studies. Pre-requisite requirements are: An A-level in a biological subject, a biologically biased access course or any 1st year ecology module in ENV or BIO. Students must have a background in basic statistical analysis of data. Lectures will show how the chemical and physical features of freshwaters influence their biological communities. Students may attend video screenings that complement lectures with examples of aquatic habitats in the tropics. To do well in this module, students need to show that they can use primary literature to illustrate or contradict ideas introduced in lectures: There will be one formal session that shows how to do this. Practical work is an important part of this Module and is an opportunity to develop skills in taxonomy mainly using microscopes, chemical analysis of freshwaters, field observation, working in small groups, mini-lecture presentation, writing a research proposal and statistical analysis of ecological data. If interested in a career in ecology, the usual route is via a higher degree (Masters or PhD), for which a first or 2:1 is needed. This might lead into research or management work, either in an academically orientated environment or in industry. An alternative path is via casual or voluntary work leading ultimately into conservation or management, but bear in mind that many committed and keen people follow the same route and competition for permanent and paid jobs can be intense. There are also opportunities to enter relevant employment directly after graduation. The Environment Agency, which is responsible for the management, monitoring and legal regulation of many aspects of freshwater, estuaries and coastal waters, is a potential employer. Consulting engineers and many multinational companies have environmental departments that tackle aquatic projects. For this type of work, students might combine ecological modules with management options, or with more physical sciences such as soils, hydrology, hydrogeology, water resources, oceanography and environmental chemistry. Careers in international development on the natural resources side may also benefit from a background in freshwater science.

ENV-5001A

20

BEHAVIOURAL ECOLOGY

In this module, the interrelationships between animal behaviour, ecology and evolution will be explored. Students will examine how behaviour has evolved to maximise survival and reproduction in the natural environment. Darwinian principles will provide the theoretical framework, within which the module will seek to explain the ultimate function of animal behaviours. Concepts and examples will be developed through the lecture series, exploring behaviours in the context of altruism, optimality, foraging, and particularly reproduction, the key currency of evolutionary success. In parallel with the lectures, students will design, conduct, analyse and present their own research project, collecting original data to answer a question about the adaptive significance of behaviour.

BIO-5010B

20

BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION AND HUMAN SOCIETY

The global biodiversity crisis threatens mass species loss. What are the implications for society? How can communities solve this problem in a world that is facing other challenges of climate change, food security and justice? This inter-disciplinary module focused on the interactions between biodiversity and human societies is designed for students of Geography, Environmental Science, Ecology and International Development who have an interest in biodiversity. The module adopts a rigorous evidence-based approach. Classes first critically examine the human drivers of biodiversity loss and the importance of biodiversity to human society, to understand how underlying perspectives and motivations influence approaches to conservation. We then examine conflicts between human society and conservation and how these potentially can be resolved, reviewing institutions and potential instruments for biodiversity conservation in both Europe and developing countries. Although particularly relevant to Ecology students with an interest in biodiversity conservation, the module is also suitable for Environmental Science or Geography students who have not taken ecological modules; where a simple understanding of ecological principles is important to understanding material, these will be reviewed in class. There are no formal pre-requisites. The module is particularly relevant for students who have previously taken one or other of: ENV-5014A Population Ecology and Management; ENV-5002B Environmental Politics and Policy Making; BIO- 5014B Community, Ecosystem and Macro-Ecology; or DEV-5013Y Natural Resources and Development. At Level 6 it is complementary to: ENV-6012B Natural Resources and Environmental Economics; ENV-6024B Science, Society and Sustainability; or DEV-6005B Contemporary Issues in Resource Development and Conservation.

ENV-6006A

20

BIOLOGICAL OCEANOGRAPHY AND MARINE ECOLOGY

This module examines the microbial processes that underpin our dependence on the marine environment for 'services' such as climate modulation and nutrient regeneration. The module will cover the evolution, biodiversity and molecular ecology of bacteria, diatoms, coccolithophores and nitrogen fixers, and the physiology and distribution of zooplankton. Example ecosystems such as the Antarctic, mid ocean gyres and Eastern Boundary Upwelling Systems will be studied in detail and predictions of the impact of environmental change (increasing temperature, decreasing pH, decreasing oxygen, and changes in nutrient supply) on marine ecosystem dynamics will be examined. Biological oceanographic methods will be critically evaluated. The module will include a reading week in week 7 and employability visits to the Centre for the Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (CEFAS) and British Antarctic Survey (BAS).

ENV-6005A

20

COMMUNITY, ECOSYSTEM AND MACRO-ECOLOGY

This module introduces the major community concepts and definitions, before looking in some detail at community patterns and processes including: species interactions; energy flows and productivity; and the hierarchy of drivers influencing community assembly, structure and diversity. Progression through these topics culminates in a macro-ecological perspective on community patterns and biodiversity. Throughout the module, there is an emphasis on the relevance of ecological theory and the fundamental science to the current environmental and biodiversity crisis. Anthropogenic impacts on natural communities through land-use, non-native species and pathogens, and climate change, are a recurrent theme underpinning the examples we draw upon.

BIO-5014B

20

CONSERVATION, ECOLOGY AND BIODIVERSITY IN THE TROPICS (FIELDCOURSE)

This module is for students on relevant courses in the Schools of BIO, ENV, DEV and NAT. NOTE: There will be a significant additional cost to this module to cover the costs of transportation and accommodation in the field. Costs will be detailed at an initial meeting for interested students and clearly advertised. Conservation ecology and biodiversity are central areas of research in the biological sciences and they share many theories, concepts and scientific methods. This module intends to take a practical approach to the commonalities in these areas using a combination of seminar work and fieldwork. The seminars will develop ideas in tropical biology and students will research issues affecting conservation of biodiversity in the tropics, considering the species ecology and the habitats, threats and challenges. There will be a significant component of small group work and directed, independent learning. The field component of this module will be a two week residential field trip to the tropics, one of two field sites (depending on numbers of students and availability).The field sites are run by expert field ecologists and during the two weeks we will explore the local environment, learn about the ecology of the landscape and about the species that inhabit the area. We will develop and run practical sessions on survey and census techniques, use of technology in modern field biology and the role of protected areas in species conservation. Students will conduct original research on the field trip, informed by prior research at UEA, to gain a deeper understanding of an aspect of tropical biology. There will be an assessed presentation on the field trip and many opportunities to develop the students own interests. All student participants will take an active role in the organisation and running of the module in order to gain project management and field logistics experience. Students will be responsible for the procurement, storage and transport of field equipment on the way to the field site and of samples on the return to the UK. Students will gain experience of travelling to a remote area and of working through licensing and customs processes. At the end of the module a report is written on the field project in the style of a journal article addressing specific questions in ecology conservation or biodiversity. Throughout the module students will be expected to maintain a modern-media record of their project from the initial desk based work at UEA, through the field component to outcomes and reporting.

BIO-5020K

20

ECOLOGY RESEARCH PROJECT

THIS MODULE IS ONLY AVAILABLE TO STUDENTS ON ECOLOGY DEGREE PROGRAMMES. Students design and undertake an independent research project under the supervision of staff members from the Centre for Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation (CEEC). Students may choose to conduct fieldwork in the summer preceding the 3rd year or during the school year.

BIO-6022Y

40

ENVIRONMENTAL ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY

This module is designed to teach skills necessary for the acquisition of good quality chemical data in environmental systems, and in the interpretation of this data. The module will focus on the collection of environmental samples for chemical analysis, methods of chemical analysis and the analytical and mathematical techniques used for data quality control. There will be a large component of practical work. This module will be particularly relevant for those wishing to do a chemistry-related project later in their degree. TEACHING AND LEARNING The module is structured around practical classes which will focus on the planning and implementation of field sampling, the preparation, storage and chemical analysis of environmental samples and the subsequent interpretation of the data acquired. Lectures will be used to provide supporting information for this exercise and more general information on broader aspects of analytical chemistry not covered in the practical classes. During the first half of the module, practical work will be based around analysis of samples collected by the class from UEA Broad and the River Yare. The second half of the module will be an independent study (mini-project) exercise, in which small groups will conduct more detailed investigations of the chemistry of the natural water bodies around UEA campus. There will be weekly non-assessed feedback on laboratory results during the module and a feed-forward formative assessment associated with mini-project topic selection. COURSE CONTENT: The module will cover field sampling strategies and techniques for preparing and storing chemical samples. There will be a strong focus on laboratory chemical analysis and on the mathematical manipulation of raw laboratory results, including quality control of data and critical comparison of results obtained using different methods. Interpretation of chemical data in its environmental context will also be covered. CAREER PROSPECTS The skills taught in this module have direct relevance to careers involving chemical analysis, with potential employers including the Environment Agency, environmental consultancies and research organizations (including postgraduate degree programmes). The broader skills associated with the use of critical analysis and independent and group work are widely valued in a wide range of professions.

ENV-5027B

20

ENVIRONMENTAL POLITICS AND POLICY MAKING

The most significant obstacles to problem solving are often political, not scientific or technological. This module examines the theoretical and empirical development of contemporary environmental politics. It is structured to analyse these issues from different theoretical perspectives, particularly theories of power and public policy making. The module is focused on dynamic examples of environmental politics and policy making at UK, EU and international levels. The module encourages and supports student-led learning by enabling students to develop their own theoretical interpretations of real world examples of politics. These are explored in seminar presentations and in an extended (4000 word) case study essay. The module assumes no prior knowledge of politics/social sciences.

ENV-5002B

20

EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY

This module investigates the principles of evolutionary biology, covering various sub-disciplines, i.e. adaptive evolution, population ecology, molecular and population genetics, speciation, biogeography, systematics, and finishing with an overview of Biodiversity. This module will enable you to understand, analyse and evaluate the fundamentals of evolutionary biology and be able to synthesise the various components into an overall appreciation of how evolution works. Key topics and recent research will be used to highlight advances in the field and inspire thought. Weekly interactive workshops will explore a number of the conceptual issues indepth through discussions, modelling and problem solving.

BIO-5008B

20

FIELD ECOLOGY

Students explore the ecology of moorlands, bogs, sand dunes, rocky shores, estuaries and woodlands. Students should develop skills in identifying plants and animals using scientific keys, carrying out quantitative surveys and statistically analysing their data. Strong emphasis is placed on student-lead project work. The bulk of the teaching takes place on a two week field course in Western Ireland, that runs immediately before the start of the Autumn Semester.

BIO-5013A

20

GIS SKILLS FOR PROJECT WORK

This module builds upon the introduction to the use of GIS provided in the first year Research and Field Skills module (ENV-4004Y), focusing on how students can obtain their own data (both from a wide range of online sources and in the field), integrate it together and then undertake analysis and presentation tasks. Such skills are particularly important for the final year projects (ENV-6021A) undertaken by many students. Skills in GIS are also valued by many prospective employers across public, private and non-profit sectors, and also for further study at MSc or PhD level. The module will review the different techniques that can be used to create and edit data in a GIS, as well as existing digital databases (both UK and global) from which map data can be extracted and downloaded. ESRI ArcGIS will be the main software used, but there will also be an introduction to open source tools such as QGIS. The module will emphasize issues of data quality (e.g. uncertainty and accuracy) as they apply to spatial data and introduce the use of scripting tools (e.g. Python) as a way of documenting and efficiently repeating more complex analysis procedures. To make links with project work and employability there will also be case studies of GIS use in the workplace. Teaching will consist of a one-hour lectures and a three-hour practical class each week. The lectures will cover key concepts, data sources and techniques in GIS, with a particular emphasis on environmental applications. These will be reinforced by practical exercises mainly using the ArcGIS software. Students should expect to spend a significant amount of time outside of scheduled classes on their formative and summative coursework.

ENV-5028B

20

POPULATION ECOLOGY AND MANAGEMENT

We live in a human dominated era recently designated "the Anthropocene". Humans harvest more than half of the primary productivity of the planet, many resources are over-exploited or depleted (e.g. fisheries) never before it was so important to correctly manage natural resources for an exponentially growing human population. It is, thus, fundamental to predict where other species occur and the sizes of their populations (abundance). Population Ecology it is an area dedicated to the dynamics of population development. In this module we will look closely at how populations are regulated, from within through density dependent factors and, from external density independent factors. We start the module with a global environmental change perspective to the management of populations and the factors that affect the population size. We then extend these ideas to help us understand population properties and processes both intra-specifically and inter-specifically. Finally we examine several management applications where we show that a good understanding of the population modelling is essential to correctly manage natural resources on the planet. Practicals will be based on statistical or modelling projects and will provide a strong training in both subject specific and transferrable skills.

ENV-5014A

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SUSTAINABILITY, SOCIETY AND BIODIVERSITY

Striking a balance between societal development, economic growth and environmental protection has proven challenging and oftentimes contentious. The concepts of `sustainability' and `sustainable development' have been coined to denote processed aiming to achieve this balance. Yet this has been hampered by contestation and ambiguity surrounding these concepts. This module introduces sustainable development, and examines why sustainability is so difficult to achieve, bringing together social and ecological perspectives. This module considers sustainability in theory and practice by examining the relationships between environment and society, through the contributions of a variety of social science disciplines. It also explores sustainability from an ecological perspective, introducing a range of concepts relevant to the structure and functioning of the biosphere and topics ranging from landscape and population ecology, to behavioural, physiological, molecular, genetic and chemical ecology. This module is assessed by coursework and an examination. TEACHING AND LEARNING A series of lectures in this module considers sustainability in theory and practice by examining the relationships between environment and society, drawing upon contributions from social science disciplines and perspectives (e.g. politics, health assessment, participation). These lectures, complemented by seminars and practicals introduce sustainable development, explore how interpretations have evolved over time, analyse how these are used by groups and interests in society, and examine the challenges of its implementation. These are followed by lectures which consider interactions between human societies and natural ecosystems, the anthropogenic impacts on biomes, ecosystems, communities, populations and the genetic diversity of individuals. The introduce approaches and ideas fundamental to modern quantitative conservation ecology. The practicals include an introduction to ecological communities, measuring ecological diversity, elementary statistical analysis, field exercises involving terrestrial environments and field trip to a nature reserve to examine relationships between landscape management and/or one or more approaches to measuring biological diversity. Self-directed reading provides opportunities for the students on this module to explore and reflect on these and other aspects in more detail. This module is intended to give you a flavour of the issues, themes and considerations relating to biodiversity, ecosystem services and human development. It does not require in-depth prior knowledge of social sciences, biology chemistry or physics.

ENV-4006B

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Disclaimer

Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules and regular (five-yearly) review of course programmes. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, there will normally be prior consultation of students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff or sabbatical leave. Where this is the case, the University will endeavour to inform students.

Entry Requirements

  • Degree Subject This programme is open to students with a first degree in any discipline along with a strong academic background.
  • Degree Classification Good first degree (minimum 2.1 or equivalent)
  • Alternative Qualifications Relevant work experience is desirable but not essential.

Students for whom English is a Foreign language

We welcome applications from students whose first language is not English. To ensure such students benefit from postgraduate study, we require evidence of proficiency in English. Our usual entry requirements are as follows:

  • IELTS: 6.5 (minimum 6.0 in all components)
  • PTE (Pearson): 62 (minimum 55 in all components)

Test dates should be within two years of the course start date.

Other tests, including Cambridge English exams and the Trinity Integrated Skills in English are also accepted by the university. The full list of accepted tests can be found here: Accepted English Language Tests

INTO UEA also run pre-sessional courses which can be taken prior to the start of your course. For further information and to see if you qualify please contact intopre-sessional@uea.ac.uk

Fees and Funding

Tuition Fees for 2017/18:

  • Home/EU:

     Full-time £7,300, Part-time £3,650

     If you choose to study part-time, please assume a pro-rata fee for the credits you are taking, or 50% of the equivalent fee per year if you are taking a full-time course on a part-time basis.  

  • Overseas:

      Full-time £18,200

      If you are classed as an 'overseas' student and are coming to UEA on a student or visitor's visa, UK visa rules won't normally allow you to study on a part-time course. You should always check with the UKVI for the latest requirement.

 

How to Apply

Applications for Postgraduate Taught programmes at the University of East Anglia should be made directly to the University.

You can apply online, or by downloading the application form.

Further Information

To request further information & to be kept up to date with news & events please use our online enquiry form.

If you would like to discuss your individual circumstances prior to applying please do contact us:

Postgraduate Admissions Office
Tel: +44 (0)1603 591515
Email: admissions@uea.ac.uk

International candidates are also encouraged to access the International Students section of our website.

    Next Steps

    Need to know more? Take a look at these pages to discover more about Postgraduate opportunities at UEA…

    We can’t wait to hear from you. Just pop any questions about this course into the form below and our enquiries team will answer as soon as they can.

    Admissions enquiries:
    admissions@uea.ac.uk or
    telephone +44 (0)1603 591515