Forest Systems

Subject FRST30001 (2014)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2014.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 3 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2014.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 60 hours
Total Time Commitment:

120 hours

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge:

Some background in plant ecology and plant biodiversity, and soil and water science is strongly recommended. Students are normally expected to have completed one or more 2nd year ecology, biology and/or soil science subjects. Interested students should contact the coordinator for advice

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:


Melbourne School of Land & Environment Student Centre
Ground Floor, Melbourne School of Land & Environment (building 142)

Phone: 13 MELB (13 6352)

Subject Overview:

Forest Systems integrates aspects of forest knowledge and forest biology taught in subjects leading to the Bachelor of Science Forest Science Major in which it is the capstone subject. At a global scale forests are managed by societies in a wide range of ways that reflect the needs of people and their aspirations for the environment. Starting with concepts of forest productivity and biological diversity, the nature and functioning of forests is developed as a basis for understanding the ecosystem services forests provide. The subject then examines forests from social, economic and biological perspectives to develop a framework for valuing forest ecosystem services. This understanding is then applied in the context of different cultures to illustrate the value of forest ecosystem services within different social and economic contexts. The subject is taught throughout Semester 2 and includes two 1-day field trips during the teaching period and a 2-day field trip in the mid semester break. This field trip will be run in residence at the University’s Creswick Campus from where visits to a variety of forests in western Victoria will be conducted. Transport and accommodation are provided, students self cater.

Learning Outcomes:

At the completion of this subject, students will have achieved the following objectives:

  • An understanding of the diversity of forest systems in tropical, temperate and boreal biomes;
  • An understanding of the biological and environmental drivers of forest productivity;
  • An appreciation the different social contexts for valuing forest ecosystem services;
  • An ability to integrate knowledge of forest ecology to address the impacts of climate change on forest systems and the ecosystem goods and services they provide;
  • Familiarity with the key literature and current debates on forest ecosystem management.
  • Participation in class discussions and fieldwork throughout semester 10%
  • Forest Systems Practical Report 40%
  • Two hour written exam 50%
Prescribed Texts: None
Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • Ability to execute library database searches to source relevant literature on key topic areas;
  • Ability to comprehend and articulate current debates in forest science and forestry;
  • Plant identification, forest assessment and measurement;
  • Field skills, especially an ability to collect and organise forest data;
  • Data analysis and interpretation skills, informed by the relevant literature;
  • Participation in group field and research activities;
  • Software skills for data collation and analysis, and reporting and presentation of results (e.g. Excel, Minitab, Word, PowerPoint).
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Forest Science
Science-credited subjects - new generation B-SCI and B-ENG.

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