Eco-Systems for Planning and Design

Subject ABPL90283 (2011)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2011.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2011:

Semester 2, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: Lecture 1 x 2 hours weekly; Tutorial 1 x 1 hour weekly
Total Time Commitment: 150 hours
Prerequisites: None specified
Corequisites: None specified
Recommended Background Knowledge: None specified
Non Allowed Subjects: None specified
Core Participation Requirements: For the purposes of considering requests for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry.
The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website:


Dr Siqing Chen


Environments and Design Student Centre
Ground Floor, Baldwin Spencer (building 113)

Phone: 13 MELB (13 6352)

Subject Overview:

This subject explores the principles of ecological systems as a framework for landscape planning and design based on landscape research and analysis. It will:

  • introduce basic ecological concepts, fundamental ecological system theory, and their applications in landscape planning and design;
  • address key issues of ecosystem components and their interactions in relation to essential ecological processes across different scales in the landscape;
  • place how ecologies will inform interventions in landscape design and planning. The subject will be delivered through lectures/guest lectures, tutorials/workshops, field trips and practical sessions synthesising dominant themes in this fields of sustainable design, ecological landscape planning, etc.


On completion of this subject students should be able to:

  • understand the basic concepts and theory in ecology and ecological systems;
  • understand the relationships between ecological systems and landscape architecture;
  • communicate and interpret landscape as a living ecological system;
  • relate key environmental factors or gradients to dominant ecological process in landscape analysis across scales;
  • understand that landscape design and planning intervention should be informed by appropriate analysis of ecological systems.


  • A research project due early in semester equivalent to a value of 1200 words (25%).
  • A design based project due mid semester equivalent to a value of 1400 words (30%).
  • A final project equivalent to 2400 words (45%).

Prescribed Texts:

Dramstad, W.E., J.D. Olson and R.T.T Forman. Landscape Ecology Principles in Landscape Architecture and Land Use Planning. Island Press, Washington, D.C., 1996.

Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills: On completion of this subject students should have developed the following:
  • correct use of technical terminology;
  • evaluation of design and planning decisions;
  • critical thinking skills;
  • conceptual and spatial thinking skills;
  • scale thinking skills;
  • analysis and synthesis of information to propose solutions;
  • written competency;
  • communication of design and planning ideas verbally and graphically.

Related Course(s): Master of Landscape Architecture
Master of Landscape Architecture
Master of Urban Design

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