Ecology in Changing Environments

Subject ECOL30006 (2016)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2016.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 3 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2016:

Semester 1, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 29-Feb-2016 to 29-May-2016
Assessment Period End 24-Jun-2016
Last date to Self-Enrol 11-Mar-2016
Census Date 31-Mar-2016
Last date to Withdraw without fail 06-May-2016

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 2 x one hour lectures per week; 24 hours of tutorial/practical classes during the semester
Total Time Commitment:

Estimated total time commitment of 170 hours

Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:
Semester 2


Recommended Background Knowledge:


Non Allowed Subjects:

Students who have received credit for 654-313 Ecology in Changing Environments (prior to 2010) may not enrol in this subject for credit.

Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering applications for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005) and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, this subject requires all students to actively and safely participate in practical class activities. Students who feel their disability may impact upon their participation are encouraged to discuss this with the Subject Coordinator and the Disability Liaison Unit.


Assoc Prof Michael Kearney, Dr Eric Treml


Subject Overview:

This subject explores the relevance of ecological and evolutionary theory for understanding the distributions of species, their interactions, their life history characteristics and how these traits are impacted by changing environmental conditions. Topics include spatial ecology and metapopulations, climatic impacts on distribution and abundance, life history evolution and ecosystem stability and resilience. The skills developed in this subject provide an essential grounding for careers in ecology.

Learning Outcomes:

The primary objectives of this subject are learning how to:

1) access primary scientific literature, through both electronic and traditional sources;

2) read, understand, and critically evaluate relevant contemporary literature in ecology;

3) design experiments and interpret data; and

4) use computer-based modeling and simulations to investigate contemporary issues in ecology.


Tutorial participation (10%); three written reports totalling up to 1000 words each during throughout the semester (30%); a 1-hour written examination held mid-semester (20%); a 2-hour written examination in the examination period (40%).

Prescribed Texts:


Recommended Texts:


Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

The subject builds upon existing generic skills, including an ability to assimilate and critically evaluate new knowledge within a scientific paradigm, and to communicate that knowledge to a broad audience.


This subject is available for science credit to students enrolled in the BSc (both pre-2008 and new degrees), BASc or a combined BSc course.

Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Engineering Systems
Environmental Engineering Systems major
Marine Biology
Science-credited subjects - new generation B-SCI and B-ENG.
Selective subjects for B-BMED

Download PDF version.