Eco-Systems for Planning and Design

Subject ABPL90283 (2013)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2013.

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

This subject is not offered in 2013.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: Lecture 1 x 2 hours weekly; Tutorial 1 x 1 hour weekly
Total Time Commitment:

150 hours

Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:


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:

W.E. Dramstad, J.D. Olson and R.T.T Forman. Landscape Ecology Principles in Landscape Architecture and Land Use Planning. Island Press, Washington, DC, 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
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Energy Efficiency Modelling and Implementation

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