ENV BIOL 3124 - Frontiers in Marine Biology III

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2015

The main aim of this course is to provide an understanding of a wide range of relevant issues facing contemporary marine biology at local and global scales. The course will encourage students to read about the latest controversies and advances in theory and will promote critical thinking through issues of conflicting and uncertain knowledge. This course is about contemporary frontiers in marine biology which will be presented by researchers that are actively pushing these boundaries. Each researcher will provide several research examples relating to their particular frontier (via a lecture and reading material) that will form the basis of discussion after the lecture. The researchers will also present a tutorial related to key writing and presentation skills relevant to the course?s four main assessments.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code ENV BIOL 3124
    Course Frontiers in Marine Biology III
    Coordinating Unit School of Biological Sciences
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 4 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Assumed Knowledge Completion of Level I and II of BSc (Marine Biology)
    Restrictions Available to BSc(MarineBiol) students only
    Course Description The main aim of this course is to provide an understanding of a wide range of relevant issues facing contemporary marine biology at local and global scales. The course will encourage students to read about the latest controversies and advances in theory and will promote critical thinking through issues of conflicting and uncertain knowledge.

    This course is about contemporary frontiers in marine biology which will be presented by researchers that are actively pushing these boundaries. Each researcher will provide several research examples relating to their particular frontier (via a lecture and reading material) that will form the basis of discussion after the lecture. The researchers will also present a tutorial related to key writing and presentation skills relevant to the course?s four main assessments.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Zoe Doubleday

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    1 identify and describe a number of topical issues related to marine biology
    2 synthesize and critically evaluate a wide range of marine literature
    3 explain the scientific method as it relates to different areas of marine biology
    4 synthesise and evaluate information from readings to write a review paper
    5 identify gaps in knowledge from readings, explain innovative ideas and design future research projects through a research proposal
    6 communicate effectively through written and oral work
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Knowledge and understanding of the content and techniques of a chosen discipline at advanced levels that are internationally recognised. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
    The ability to locate, analyse, evaluate and synthesise information from a wide variety of sources in a planned and timely manner. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
    An ability to apply effective, creative and innovative solutions, both independently and cooperatively, to current and future problems. 4, 5
    Skills of a high order in interpersonal understanding, teamwork and communication. 6
    A proficiency in the appropriate use of contemporary technologies. 4, 5, 6
    A commitment to continuous learning and the capacity to maintain intellectual curiosity throughout life. 1-6
    A commitment to the highest standards of professional endeavour and the ability to take a leadership role in the community. 1-6
    An awareness of ethical, social and cultural issues within a global context and their importance in the exercise of professional skills and responsibilities. 1-6
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    There is no required text book however there are a number of readings and resources provided via My Uni
    Online Learning
    Teaching materials and course documentation will be posted on the MyUni website. Grades and feedback will also be provided via MyUni.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    The course consists of a two-hour lecture and one-hour tutorial per week for 10 weeks of the semester (9 ‘guest’ lectures/tutorials and 1 ‘overview’ lecture/tutorial). In the remaining two weeks student seminars are held. Students are expected to read any materials provided by guest lecturers and contribute to post-lecture discussion. Additional reading will also be required to complete the assessment tasks, namely the review paper, research proposal and media release.
    Workload

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    A student enrolled in a 3 unit course, such as this, should expect to spend, on average 12 hours per week on the studies required. This includes both the formal contact time required to the course (e.g., lectures and tutorials), as well as non-contact time (e.g., reading, revision and preparing assessments).
    Learning Activities Summary
    Specific lecture topics and lecturers vary from year to year. The course is designed around a series of lectures and tutorials given by a different research-focussed guest lecturer each week. The lectures are designed to expose students to a wide variety of topics in marine biology, with an emphasis on topical, ground-breaking, frontier science. The students are not examined on the content provided in the lectures, but rather they use them to develop their own ideas for each self-directed written assignment. The tutorial topics are broadly based around the key assessments (e.g. review paper, media release, research proposal, and seminar), and are intended to assist students in developing writing and science communication skills.
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Frontiers in Marine Biology has five components of assessment: a research proposal and seminar, a 'mini' review paper and a media release, and participation in lectures (which will be assessed through the submission of a short 100 word summary of each lecture theme). To ensure that you are exposed to as wide a variety of marine topics as possible the three key assessment components (research proposal, review paper and media release) should cover different aspects of Marine Biology. For example, if your essay is on marine plants please ensure that your research proposal and media release focus on a different aspect of marine biology. Your seminar will be based around your research proposal.

    Assessment task Type of assessment   Hurdle
    (Yes/No)    
    Percentage of total assessment Learning outcomes
    Participation Formative No  10% 1,6
    Review paper Formative
    Summative
    No 25% 1,2,4,6
    Media release Formative
    Summative
    No 15% 4,6
    Research proposal      Summative No 35% 1,3,5,6
    Seminar Summative No 15% 1,6
    Assessment Detail
    Active Participation: 10% of total course marks (‘100 word’ lecture summaries)
    Participation in lectures will build the student knowledge base in regards to many areas of research in marine biology and provide a source of ideas for the review paper, media release and research proposal. Participation will be assessed through the production of a 100 word summary of each lecture (weeks 1 to 10). Summaries are submitted online immediately after each lecture (e.g. within 30 mins) and each summary is worth 1% (10% overall). Late submissions receive 0%, unless there are extenuating circumstances which prevented the student submitting on time.

    Review paper: 25% of total course marks (~ 2000 words)
    The aim of this assessment is to broaden student knowledge in an area of marine biology that interests them and gain an understanding of the paper writing process. Students will also gain vital skills in synthesising and evaluating information from the primary scientific literature (e.g. journal articles). The assessment is submitted online.

    Media release: 15 % of total course marks (~ 500 words)
    The aim of this assessment is to build science communication skills and show understanding of scientific concepts. Students are required to convert a technically/scientifically complex journal article into a short, attention grabbing media release. The assessment is submitted online.

    Research proposal: 35% of total course marks (~8-10 pages)
    This assessment is the most important and challenging aspect of the course – it aims to take students a step further than the other assessments as they will not only need to review and synthesise the primary literature, but propose a research idea and go beyond what has already been done. The assessment is submitted online.

    Seminar: 15 % of total course marks (10 min talk + questions)
    The aim of this exercise is to extend students’ oral presentation skills, as well as their ability to listen and formulate questions. The seminar will be based on the research proposal. 

    Submission
    All written work will be submitted online via MyUni using the “Assignment” function, along with the School’s Assessment Coversheet (except the 100 word summaries).

    It is essential that your written reports be your own original work. Marks will be deducted, or no marks awarded, where there is evidence of plagiarism.  

    If an extension is not applied for, or not granted then a penalty for late submission will apply. A penalty of 10% of the value of the assignment for each calendar day that the assignment is late (i.e. weekends count as 2 days), up to a maximum of 50% of the available marks will be applied. This means that an assignment that is 5 days late or more without an approved extension can only receive a maximum of 50% of the marks available for that assignment.


    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.