Field Ecology for Environmental Management will introduce students to the basics of ecology and how it relates to the management of contemporary environmental issues. The course is designed primarily as a disciplinary knowledge course for the Masters of Environmental Management. In essence the course is an introduction to applied ecology, how ecologists develop questions, design sampling programs, collect data and then how this contributes to our understanding of ecological issues. This course will demonstrate how fundamental ecological principals can guide managers to make informed decisions.
The course will comprise of two components. Firstly, a short series of lectures that will provide students with a fundamental understanding of ecological principals including components of ecological systems, population dynamics, relationship between the physical world and species distribution and abundance, species interactions, principals of ecological sampling, hypothesis testing and basic statistical tools. Secondly, the students will then apply this knowledge in the field. Students will develop skills in collecting ecological data on a range of ecosystems including terrestrial, estuarine and marine. This will demonstrate how the theory learned during the lectures, applies to real world studies in contrasting ecosystems. The course will have a focus on the impact of ecology primarily in an Australian environmental context.
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