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Tropical Ecology field course - BIO00080H

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  • Department: Biology
  • Module co-ordinator: Prof. Colin Beale
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: H
  • Academic year of delivery: 2022-23

Module summary

In this module, students will study topical issues in tropical biology and conservation while developing detailed field and experimental design skills at a remote fieldsite in Tanzania.

Related modules

Co-requisite modules

  • None

Prohibited combinations

  • None

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Autumn Term 2022-23 to Summer Term 2022-23

Module aims

The module will provide an extended opportunity to learn and implement ecological fieldwork in a tropical ecosystem. Based for four weeks in the savannahs of Tanzania, the majority of the module is focussed on designing and implementing individual field projects that test ecological theory. Formal teaching in Tanzania will be limited to the first few days, covering modern understanding of the ecological processes that shape savannahs, during which time students will be assisted in developing project ideas. The next three weeks will be focussed on gathering data for individual projects, with occasional lectures and discussions of papers with visiting researchers and conservationists focussed on developing a practical insight into tropical ecology and conservation. The last few days of the fieldcourse will involve a series of tripds further afield to introduce students to additional topical biomes, including forests and wetlands. During the autumn term three supported learning sessions will provide individual support to data analysis and project writing, and a final opportunity to discuss wider literature in the context of individual projects.

Module learning outcomes

1. Design and undertake individual field work to address ecological questions

2. Access and evaluate literature pertaining to ecology and conservation in the tropics.

3. Demonstrate appropriate selection and use of statistical and analysis frameworks for ecological datasets.


Task Length % of module mark
Project Report
N/A 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Project Report
N/A 100

Module feedback

Marks for open assessments will be made available to you and your supervisor via e:vision. Individual comments will be added to your script and/or on separate summary feedback document. Histograms of module marks will be posted on the notice boards outside the Biology Student Services office. You should take the opportunity to discuss your marks and feedback with your supervisor.


During the teaching of the module you will receive feedback that may be at a whole class or individual level. Forms of feedback may include: model answers and discussion of workshop questions, summaries of performance in practicals, VLE-based quizzes, individual spoken comments during workshops, individual written comments on formative work.  

Indicative reading

These are available through the VLE module site.

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.