Marine Biology BSc (Hons) Add to your prospectus

  • Offers study abroad opportunities Offers study abroad opportunities
  • Opportunity to study for a year in China Offers a Year in China

Key information


  • Course length: 3 years
  • UCAS code: C160
  • Year of entry: 2018
  • Typical offer: A-level : ABB / IB : 33 / BTEC : D*DD
ecology-and-marine-biology-3

Module details

Programme Year One

Compulsory modules develop the essential skills required to be a Marine Biologist and build a foundation of knowledge on the physical and biological environments. Three optional modules allow you to focus a little more on the subjects that interest you.

Year One Compulsory Modules

  • Study Skills (ecology and Marine Biology) (ENVS104)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterWhole Session
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims
    1. To develop study skills such as referencing, essay writing, oral and poster presentation.

    2. ​To introduce and develop the skills necessary for planning a career and obtaining relevant experience.

    Learning Outcomes

    ​Be able to write a scientific essay

    Be able to produce a scientific poster​

    Be able to give a scientific oral presentation​

  • Marine Biology: Life in the Seas and Oceans (ENVS121)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting60:40
    Aims

    This module will introduce students to the main groups of organisms found in the marine environment. Students will encounter these groups in subsequent modules and field studies and gaining a familiarity with them in this module will enable them to recognise them and understand their role in marine ecosystems. 


    Learning Outcomes​Acquire knowledge and understanding on the taxonomic and functional diversity of marine life.

    ​Develop the ability to recognise the major groups of marine organisms using their key features

    ​Experience how to examine marine organisms and understand their functional biology using different kinds of specimens and approaches. 

    ​Recognise the adaptational solutions to functional problems adopted by marine organisms

  • Quantitative Skills for Ecology and Marine Biology (ENVS128)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting80:20
    Aims

    ​This module will prepare students for the quantitative aspects of other parts of their degree programme.

    Learning Outcomes

    ​On completion of this module, students should be able to use basic algebra

    ​On completion of this module, students should be able to use basic statistical methods

    ​On completion of this module, students should be able to use spreadsheets to record, present and analyze scientific data

    ​On completion of this module, students should be able to recognize the basic ideas of calculus in scientific contexts

  • Laboratory and Field Techniques for [marine and Terrestial] Ecologists (ENVS171)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting20:80
    Aims

    ​This practical module will provide training in a range of ecological skills in a series of field exercises around Liverpool and on a residential field course to SW Wales. The skills used will have a wide application to many fields of environmental science including modern biology, ecology and physical geography. Techniques taught include identification of plants and animals, communities and measurement of selected ecological processes. You will learn quantitative skills in field ecology and how they can be used to solve fundamental and applied problems. You will also learn quite a lot of ecology at the same time.

    Learning Outcomes

    Apply a quantitative approach to field science

    ​Work safely under lab and field conditions

    ​Describe plant and animal communities and relate these to environmental factors

    ​Sample plant and animal communities and relate these to environmental factors

    ​Appreciate landscape and ecological features

    ​Measure and understand the relevance of ecological processes

    ​Identify selected plants and animals

    ​Investigate animal behaviour

  • Marine Ecosystems: Diversity, Processes and Threats (ENVS122)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting55:45
    Aims

    This module aims to introduce students to the diversity of ecosystem types in the marine environment and the various threats that they face. 

    Learning Outcomes

    Acquire knowledge and understanding of representative key ecosystems found in the marine environment.

      ​Be familiar with the marine organisms that live in representative key marine ecosystems.

      ​Acquire a basic knowledge of fundamental ecological principles, transferable to later marine and non-marine modules.

      ​Be aware of the threats that humans may pose to marine ecosystems.

      ​Appreciate how humans assess and may mitigate detrimental impacts to the environment.

      ​Be introduced to the importance to their future studies of critical reading of scientific literature.

    Year One Optional Modules

    • Living With Environmental Change (ENVS119)
      Level1
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting100:0
      Aims

      The over-arching aim of thismodule is to introduce students to the so-called ‘Grand Challenges’ facingsociety and what is being done to address them. Living with Environmental Change is a key interdisciplinaryresearch theme currently being addressed worldwide; from tackling climatechange and carbon emissions to promoting sustainable resource use and energyefficiency. This module illustrates that an interdisciplinary approach iscrucial to identifying the underlying problems faced by humanity and to findingholistic and sustainable solutions.

      ​ 

      Learning Outcomes

      ​Obtain an understanding of the Grand Challenges facing society;

      ​Develop an appreciation of the significance of interdisciplinary working in addressing the Grand Challenges;

      ​Understand that Geography plays a key role in the Living With Environmental Change (LWEC) research agenda;

      ​Become familiar with the linkages between research, policy and sustainability.

    • Climate, Atmosphere and Oceans (ENVS111)
      Level1
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting80:20
      Aims

      Introduce the climate system, the atmosphere and ocean:

      • Address how the climate system varies and how climate is controlled by radiative forcing;
      • How the structure of the atmosphere is determined and how the atmosphere circulates;
      • How the structure of the ocean is determined and how the ocean circulates;
      • How the atmosphere and ocean vary together.
      • How the past state of the climate system is affected by the ocean circulation
      Learning Outcomes

      1. Knowledge and Understanding
       

      a. Understand how physical processes operate within the climate system, the atmosphere and the ocean.

      b. Appreciate the complexity of the climate system, the effect of radiative forcing, the concept of feedbacks, how rotation affects the circulation; the differences between currents and waves.

      c. Gain awareness of the similarities and differences between the atmosphere and ocean.​

      2. Intellectual Abilities
       

      a. To be able to evaluate the relative importance of different physical processes in the climate system

      b. To develop critical skills in transferring insight gained from one problem to another problem, such as how the atmosphere circulates from one planet to another planet.​

      3. Subject Based Practical Skills
       

      a. Perform simple order of magnitude calculations and make inferences from the results.

      b. Understand the use of dimensions.​

      ​​​​​​

      4. General Transferable Skills
       

      a. Application of numbers, involving order of magnitudes and dimensions.

      b. Time management.

      c. Problem solving.​

    • Molecules and Cells (LIFE101)
      Level1
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting80:20
      Aims

      After successful completion of this module, students will be able to:

      1. Recognise the basic of structure, composition and function of cells;
      2. Explain core concepts relating to the organisation and specialisation of eukaryotes, prokaryotes and viruses;
      3. Define the cellular components involved in the regulation of key functions such as the generation of energy, movement, cell growth and division and differentiation;
      4. Describe the latest techniques that are used in cell biology to determine cell structure and function;
      5. Develop in students the knowledge and understanding of the subject and the ability to apply, evaluate and interpret this knowledge to solve problems.
      Learning Outcomes

      On successful completion of the module students will be able to:

      1. Describe how cells arose and their structural features;
      2. Compare and contrast eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells;
      3. Identify the different ways cells manipulate energy;
      4. Define the molecular basis of the processes by which cells grow, replicate, communicate, interact with their environment, move and die;
      5. Describe the functional importance of cell specialisation and cooperation in tissues.
    • Ecology and Conservation (ENVS157)
      Level1
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting70:30
      AimsUsing certain key themes, to introduce students to the complex and multifaceted nature of environmental issues and ecological science, particularly stressing the interrelationships between their biophysical and human dimensions.

      To encourage students to manage their own learning.

      Learning Outcomes An appreciation of the complexities and multifaceted nature of environmental issues.



      ​An understanding of land-use change, its history, the main drivers and their interactions.

      ​An overview of natural disasters and irreversible environmental change.

      ​An introduction to the politics of natural resources and energy.

      ​A basic understanding of ecological principles.

      ​An understanding of the complexities of conserving biodiversity.

      ​An understanding of the scientific debate about evidence for global climate change, the possible socio-economic impacts of various climate change scenarios, and possible ameliorative measures.

    • Introduction to Marine Biogeochemistry (ENVS158)
      Level1
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
      Aims
      1. To introduce students to marine chemistry of the major and trace elements.
      2. To demonstrate the dynamic relationship between the chemical ocean environment and biological processes.
      3. To identify the main ocean basins and main oceanic transport routes of chemical species
      4. To teach the necessary practical skills for oceanographic sampling and measurement of chemical species.
      Learning Outcomes1. Students will be able to identify ocean basins, their major characteristics and transport pathways.

      2. Students will gain knowledge of the sources and distributions of major and minor elements in the ocean, including dissolved gases, nutrients and carbon.​

      3. Students will understand the chemical and biological processes that control the distribution of major and minor elements including dissolved gases, nutrients and carbon.​

      ​3. Students will recognize the form and function of different components of the marine ecosystem including viruses, bacteria, phytoplankton and zooplankton. ​

      ​4. Students will be able to synthesis knowledge of key biogeochemical cycles of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus to understand how they are linked in the modern and past ocean environment. 

      5. Students will know how to measure key properties of the ocean and interpret why they vary in space and time

    • Applied Genetic and Molecular Technologies (LIFE108)
      Level1
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting80:20
      AimsThis module aims to:
      1. Provide students with the knowledge and understanding of the structure of nucleic acids and how these molecules encode the properties of cells;
      2. Develop knowledge and understanding of the mechanisms that lead to inheritance in offspring;
      3. Equip students tobe able to describe the basic techniques that are used to experimentally clone genes and analyse their structure and function;
      4. Develop students'' knowledge and understanding in genetics and molecular biology, and their ability to apply, evaluate and interpret this knowledge to solve problems, in these disciplines. 
      5. P.MsoNormal{text-align:justify;margin:0cm 0cm 0pt;font-family:Arial;font-size:10pt;}LI.MsoNormal{text-align:justify;margin:0cm 0cm 0pt;font-family:Arial;font-size:10pt;}DIV.MsoNormal{text-align:justify;margin:0cm 0cm 0pt;font-family:Arial;font-size:10pt;}.MsoChpDefault{font-family:Calibri;font-size:11pt;}.MsoPapDefault{line-height:115%;margin-bottom:10pt;}DIV.WordSection1{page:WordSection1;}Introduce students to the ethical implications of genetic and molecular technologies.
      Learning Outcomes

      Explain the molecular processes that occur to produce variation in the offspring;

      and how to interpret Mendelian and non-Mendelian patterns of inheritance;

      ​Explain how to apply molecular technologies to isolate and characterise nucleic acids and design and interpret basic experiments to clone and analyse genes;

      ​Show how molecular biology technologies might be used to solve problems in biology, food security, veterinary science and medicine;

      ​Develop an appreciation of the ethical issues associated with genetic and molecular technologies.

    • Ecology and the Global Environment (LIFE120)
      Level1
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting80:20
      Aims
    • This module aims to:

      Describe the physical and chemical contexts of the biosphere, the cycling of important elements at different scales, the distribution of biomes and the ecosystem concept;

    • Discuss ecological concepts such as succession, niche, food web theory, ecosystem stability and the impact of human activities;
    • Explain conservation of biodiversity at a range of scales.
    • Develop knowledge and understanding in ecology, and ability to apply, evaluate and interpret this knowledge to solve problems.
    • Learning Outcomes​Identify a range of global problems facing mankind that have ecological origins;
      Link each of these problems to key ecological concepts;Recognize how interactions of individuals, populations and communities with the physico-chemical environment contribute to determining species distributions and abundance, and to the flows of energy and nutrients;

      Identify the demographic forces underlying the growth and size of populations and the determination of biodiversity.

    Programme Year Two

    Year 2 develops more specialist knowledge of Marine Biology, while allowing you to take a wide range of options in areas that interest you. You choose two optional modules.

    Year Two Compulsory Modules

    • Research Skills (ecology) (ENVS204)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterWhole Session
      Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
      Aims

      This module develops students'' understanding and appreciation of Ecology and Marine Biology by developing subject-specific research and employability skills. The module focusses on four specific aims:

      1. Devleop capacity to conduct research projects, through training in research methods, data analysis and transferable skills.
      2. Teach and practice critical thinking and writing skills to prepare students for subsequent years of study.
      3. Plan for summer vacation activity.
      4. Plan for future careers and enhance employability.
      Learning Outcomes​Build knowledge of the fields of ecology and marine biology
      Develop experience in planning, executing and completing a research project
      Understand how to evaluate scientific literature

      ​Improve personal employability skills

    • Marine Biology (ENVS241)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterContinuing Education Session
      Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
      Aims

      ​This module aims to increase students'' knowledge of how to sample and identify a broad range of taxonomic groups common to inshore and coastal marine ecosystems. It will build knowledge and confidence in the ability to go on and undertake field-based marine research and give students the experience of boat-based sampling required to enhance their prospects of gaining employment in the marine sectors.

      Field-based studies allow students to develop and enhance many of the generic skills (for example, team working, problem solving, and interpersonal relationships) which are of value to the world of work and active citizenship. This module will therefore widen access to a range of professions that require these core skills, increasing the overall employability of our students. Finally, students will learn how to communicate their findings through a range of techniques commonly used in workplaces (e.g. oral presentations and handouts, accessible information guides) to complement other writing and communication techniques (e.g. papers, essays) emphasized elsewhere in the relevant programmes. 
      Learning Outcomes

      ​Students will learn how to sample and identify a broad range of coastal and inshore marine taxa

      ​Students will enhance their ability to communicate through a range of formats to audiences with different levels of prior knowledge

      ​Students will develop a better understanding of how the biodiveristy of marine species is adapted to different habitats and environmental conditions

      ​Students will become confident at working on a marine research vessel through repeat trips utilising a range of sampling techniques

    • Statistics for Environmental Scientists (ENVS222)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting80:20
      Aims

      This module provides training in statistics for environmental scientists. We emphasize the use of software to analyze real environmental data. We do not assume extensive prior knowledge. We will teach the essential theory alongside the practical components.

      Learning Outcomes

      make sense of the statistical terms that appear in scientific papers and the media


      ​summarize data using graphs, tables, and numerical summaries

      ​choose appropriate statistical methods to answer research questions

      use statistical software to apply these methods, and interpret the output

    • Marine Ecophysiology, Ecology and Exploitation (ENVS251)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting55:45
      Aims

      This module aims to provide studentswith essential background in marine ecology, ecophysiology and resourceexploitation required for study at higher levels. Students will also develop theability to evaluate and critique the scientific literature, as well as theability to draw in relevant information from multiple topics areas to address This module aims to provide studentswith essential background in marine ecology, ecophysiology and resourceexploitation required for study at higher levels. Students will also develop theability to evaluate and critique the scientific literature, as well as theability to draw in relevant information from multiple topics areas to address multi-disciplinarytopics.


      Learning Outcomes

      Be familiar with some key physiological adaptations necessary to survive in the marine environment​

      ​Understand the imporance of ​​​​​some key ecological concepts that underpin the stucturing of marine communities

      ​Develop a basic understanding of key human activities that can affect individuals, populations and communities of marine animals 

      ​Develop the ability to read and critically evaluate scientific papers

      ​Develop the ability to research, plan and write essay questions that tackle multi-disciplinary issues (using material from across the module as necessary)

    • Marine Ecology Field Studies (ENVS278)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
      Aims

      ​This module aims to increase students'' knowledge of how to study a broad range of coastal habitats and species. It will build knowledge and confidence in the ability to go on and undertake both field-based and laboratory based marine ecological research in their careers going forward. This module relies heavily on active learning, with students completing their own data collection and working together, with guidance from academics, on how to generate useful outcomes. It will build on core skills developed earlier in tutorial modules (communication, research skills etc), as well as application of subjects previously explored only through lecture-based theory modules. Field and laboratory-based studies allow students to develop and enhance many generic skills (for example, team working, problem solving, and interpersonal relationships) which are of value to the world of work and active citizenship. This module will therefore widen access to a range of professions that require these core skills, increasing the overall employability of our students.

      Learning Outcomes

      Gain further knowledge of higher level taxonomy and biodiversity of key groups of European marine species​

      ​Understand further the physical factors that drive the distributions of species within an estuarine environment and the behavioral and eco-physiological adaptations of animals to this. 

      ​Learn how to collect data from a range of different habitats and also develop skills to complete relevant field and/or laboratory experiments

      ​Experience preparation and analysis of different types of quantitative data from different sampling regimes.

      ​Further develop important research skills including record-keeping from fieldwork and laboratory work, and communication of results in different media.

    Year Two Optional Modules

    • Marine Pollution (ENVS232)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting60:40
      Aims

      ·         To introduce students to the main anthropogenic stressors, their effects and importance on the marine system;

      ·         To develop an awareness of the current problems;

      ·         To train students in literature search and reading of scientific papers;

      ·         To enhance writing and communication skills.

      Learning Outcomes​​Students will gain an understanding and awareness of the various types of stressors that affect the marine system.

      ​​Students will be trained in browsing and searching Web of science to produce a research related poster 

    • Life in A Dynamic Ocean (ENVS265)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting80:20
      Aims
      • To gain an appreciation of how ecosystems in the ocean are intricately linked to their physical fluid environment
      • To understand how microbial life is affected by molecular diffusion and turbulence
      • To understand the challenges faced by microscopic life in the viscous fluid of the ocean
      • To address how mean flows in the ocean can be vital in the life stages of larger marine organisms
      • To appreciate the global differences in plankton communities, and the underlying reasons for those differences
      • To understand the problem of how community diversity is maintained in the ocean, and the current theories attempting to explain this diversity
      Learning Outcomes

       Students will gain a broad understanding of how different plankton communities arise in different oceanic regimes, and how that ultimately structures food chains to larger marine animals.

      ​Students will be able to compare quantitatively the scales of different processes, and critically assess their relative importance for life in the ocean.

      ​Students will strengthen, and acquire new, skills in quantifying physical-biological drivers of ecosystems.

      ​Students will learn the important of a multi-disciplinary approach on marine biology and gain experience in solving novel problems.

    • Evolutionary Biology (LIFE213)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting70:30
      Aims
    • ​This modules aims to:

      Provide students with a modern framework for understanding how organisms evolve and the major transitions in evolution ;

    • ​Explain where heritable phenotypic variation comes from, how it shapes the evolutionary process within species (microevolution) and elucidate the link between micro- and macro-evolution

    • Describe the factors influencing the genetic constitution of a population;

    • ​Explain how evolution and ecology are linked OR explain how gene sequence data can be used to study evolutionary processes.

    • ​Equip students with knowledge and understanding in evolutionary biology, and the ability to apply, evaluate and interpret this knowledge to solve biological problems. ​

    • Learning Outcomes

      ​Discuss the origins of heritable phenotypic variation;

      ​Describe the main factors that cause changes in the genetic constitution of populations;

      Explain the difference between microevolution and macroevolution and how the two processes are linked;

      Explain patterns of biodiversity from an evolutionary perspective;

      Describe the major evolutionary transitions;​

      EITHER Explain how ecology influences evolution and evolution influences ecology (Elective option 1) OR Explain the basic principles of studying molecular evolution and interpret genetic sequence data (Elective option 2);

      Demonstrate knowledge and critical understanding of the principles of evolutionary biology, and how this knowledge has been applied to solve problems.​

    • Understanding Marine and Terrestrial Spatial Ecology Using Gis (ENVS255)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
      Aims

      This module aims to introduce students to the nature,operation and application of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) relevant toecologists and marine biologists. Through a series of workshops studentwill learn how to conduct complex tasks in GIS and how to apply these to realworld scientific questions.  Through an essay addressing the use of GIS inconservation, students will review published literature to examine how the adventof GIS has changed marine and terrestrial ecology. 

      Learning Outcomes​Be able to critically review selected applications of GIS in areas of ecology, environmental management and marine biology in order to appreciate its role in decision support.
        ​​Understand the nature and sources of spatial data by correct analysis of a variety of datasets provided (particuarly with respect to remotely sensed information) used within GIS, have practised the input of these data into a GIS and have developed a critical awareness of the importance of error and quality with respect to spatial data.

        ​Demonstrate the ability to accurately deploy a variety of GIS functions (such as measurement, queries, neighbourhood analyses, overlay, interpolation, etc.) available within a GIS package to integrate manipulate and analyse spatial datasets.

        ​Ap​ply selected GIS functions with respect to solving a problem based exercise.

        ​Communicate the results from GIS operations by outputting results in the appropriate format.

      1. Comparative Animal Physiology (LIFE212)
        Level2
        Credit level15
        SemesterSecond Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting80:20
        Aims
        1. To introduce students to the physiological problems encountered by animals in their natural environments;

        2. ​To encourage students to relate lifestyle and physiology to habitat and to potentially hostile environments;

        3. To explain how increasing complexity of bodily organisation can lead to greater levels of bodily homeostasis;

        4. To develop in students an understanding of physiological mechanisms at all levels of organisation, in relation to energetics, temperature, respiration, osmoregulation, and nitrogen excretion. ​
        Learning Outcomes

        ​To apply the general principles underlying physiological adaptation

        ​To analyze relationships between animal lifestyle, increasing complexity of bodily organisation and ability to maintain homeostasis

        ​​To identify the physiological mechanisms operating at all levels of organisation in relation to the control of temperature, oxygen, osmoregulation, energetics, and nitrogen excretion
      2. Population and Community Ecology (LIFE214)
        Level2
        Credit level15
        SemesterSecond Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting60:40
        Aims
      3. ​Introduce students to the concepts and principles underlying the dynamic interactions between species within communities and populations;

      4. ​Describe examples, taken from across the globe, that illustrate: the importance of population ecology; pressures on fish stocks; use of natural predators for biological control processes;

      5. Describe how mutualistic interactions benefit communities, such as coral reefs and leguminous plants;
      6. Explore how knowledge and understanding of species- and community- interactions can help to develop plans for ecological restoration;
      7. Develop students’ ability to apply, evaluate and interpret this knowledge and understanding to solve problems in zoology.

      8. Learning Outcomes

        ​Describe the demographic forces acting on populations of a single species, and their consequences;

        ​Explain the key features of the dynamics of antagonistic two-species interactions (interspecific competition and predation) and of mutualisms;

        Describe the development of community patterns in time (succession) and in space;​Explain the relationships between structure and function operating at the level of the ecological community;Demonstrate knowledge and critical understanding of the principles of ecology, and how this knowledge has been applied to solve problems.​

        Interpret biological patterns in terms of their dynamics and underlying processes.​

      Programme Year Three

      The core compulsory modules focus on research skills and include your independent research project. A wide choice of specialist research-led modules from right across the University allows you to focus on the subjects which interest you the most. You choose four optional modules.

      Year Three Compulsory Modules

      • Contemporary Issues in Ecology and Marine Biology (ENVS301)
        Level3
        Credit level30
        SemesterWhole Session
        Exam:Coursework weighting30:70
        Aims

        This module aims to develop a number of skills, attributes and experiences required by graduates in ecology and marine biology. The Overseas Trip develops self-confidence, interpersonal communication skills adaptability and initiative through travel. Field Studies Council Courses provide specialist identification skills useful in the workplace. The Honours Field Course increases experience of the variety of UK biota and further develops the ability to carry out an independent research project. Research Seminar and Tutorials broaden experience of current research and policy in the fields of ecology, conservation, biodiversity and marine biology. 

        Learning OutcomesAn advanced ability to design, execute and report on a research project. 

        ​Increased confidence to plan and work independently. 

        ​Develop an awareness of the current state of the students'' Honours fields

        ​Develop communcation skills, both interpersonal and written. 

      • Honours Project - Ecology & Environment / Marine Biology (ENVS305)
        Level3
        Credit level30
        SemesterWhole Session
        Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
        Aims

        To provide individual experience in the planning, design and execution of a research project in a defined topic, that may be based on laboratory work, field work, data analysis, or modelling.

        Learning Outcomes

        On completion of the project, students should be able to demonstrate the following skills:

        Organisational

        • Plan and implement an original research project
        • Design and plan subsequent work to extend initial findings and gain some independence in these activities
        • Demonstrate time management skills
        • Act responsibly and display commitment to the work

        Practical

        • Recognise hazards and follow safe and ethical working practices
        • Demonstrate skills in an appropriate range of research techniques
        • Generate and record reliable data/information

        Intellectual

        • Display familiarity with the background literature to the project
        • Appreciate the aims and learning outcomes of the project
        • Analyse, interpret and evaluate observations/data/information and draw conclusions
        • Appreciate the relevance of the project''s findings in the wider context of the scientific literature

        Communication

        • Interact with academic staff, research staff and students
        • Maintain an accurate, comprehensive and intelligible record of methods, observations/data/information
        • Produce Preliminary and Final word processed reports and give an oral presentation using PowerPoint

      Year Three Optional Modules

      • Surviving the Marine Environment: Adaptation, Behaviour and Conservation (ENVS310)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterFirst Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
        Aims

        ​This module aims to foster a broad understanding of contemporary theory in behavioural ecology, evolutionary biology and ecophysiology, with special reference to the marine environment. We will consider processes that operate at scales from individuals to populations and consider implications of these processes for the conservation of marine species and ecosystems.

        Learning OutcomesAppreciate the diversity of behavioural, life-history, genetic and phenotypic adaptations that are adopted by a variety of marine organisms;

        Understand the costs and benefits of these behavioural and life-history strategies of different marine species;

        Understand the various processes that drive evolution in the marine environment;

        Have experience of the relevance of evolutionary processes to contemporary marine science and biological conservation.​

      • Marine Planning Theory & Practice (ENVS341)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterFirst Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
        Aims

        ​Theaim of this module is to introduce students to the theoretical, practicaland critical background of marine planning as it is developinginternationally.

         

        Theobjectives of this module are that students should be able:

         1.    To explore thebackground, history and theoretical underpinnings of the concept of marineplanning.

        2.    To understand key writings that are contributing to the development ofmarine planning.

        3.    To appreciate thediversity of marine planning thought and practice in different political andgeographical settings.

        4.    To argueconstructively for the appropriate development of marine planning in variouscontexts.​

        Learning Outcomes

        ​Knowledge of the historical, conceptual and theoretical background of marine planning.

        ​Knowledge of the practical application of the principles of marine planning in selected contexts.

        Ability to understand international academic and practitioner arguments for the development of marine planning.​Ability to present knowledge and critical thinking about marine planning orally and in written form.​
      • Coastal Environments: Spatial and Temporal Change (ENVS376)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterFirst Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting60:40
        Aims

        This module aims to consider the response of physical processes and coastal environments to changes in sea-level and climate. Attention is given to the geomorphology of coastal environments, its response to external agents, as well as to possible coastal managment strategies. The module aims at proving students with knowledge and understanding of the physical processes acting along coastal areas, and to promote students capability to critically understand pros and cons of different managment tecniques in relation to future climate change.

        Learning Outcomes

        Knowledge and understanding of physical aspects of coastal environments

        ​​Knowledge and understanding of the concept of spatial and temporal variation: physical processes and landforms, and the importance of spatial and temporal scales

        ​​Knowledge and understanding of environments as a result of process and form interaction

        ​​Knowledge and understanding of methodologies of analysis and interpretation

        ​Development of an informed concern for the Earth and its people

        ​Capability to critically analyze real case studies in the context of previously acquired knowledge

      • Advanced Topics in Ecology (LIFE337)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterFirst Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
        Aims
      • ​To describe modern approaches to long-standing ecological issues

      • ​To introduce current research in the expanding areas of ecology

      • To develop students'' knowledge and deep understanding in key areas of ecology and an ability to apply, critically evaluate, and interpret this knowledge to solve complex ecological problems​

      • Learning Outcomes

        ​To assess how a range of biotic and abiotic processes can act, and interact, to drive ecological dynamics and the structure and assembly of communities

        ​To evaluate predictions associated with relationships between organisms and their environment at a range of spatial and trophic scales

        To explain how current key concepts can be used to understand, and manage, ecosystems

      • Marine Ecology: Theory and Applications (ENVS383)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterSecond Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting75:25
        Aims

        To develop the connections between ecological theory and the management of marine communities and ecosystems. The theory covered will mostly be concerned with the dynamics and diversity of communities and ecosystems.

        Learning Outcomes

        ​evaluate the major ecological theories underlying the dynamics and diversity of marine communities and ecosystems.

        ​relate problems in marine conservation and resource exploitation to these ecological concepts.

        ​use appropriate methods to assess the consequences of environmental change and management for marine communities and ecosystems.

        ​recognize the importance of ecological theory in underpinning scientific advice to management.

      • Current Topics in Animal Behaviour (LIFE322)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterSecond Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting80:20
        Aims

        ​To develop in students an understanding of the use of evolutionary theory to understand animal behaviour

        To develop in students the ability to apply, critically evaluate and interpret this knowledge and understanding, to solve complex problems in the study of behaviour To develop in students an understanding how predictive modelling, experimental, and observational approaches integrate to explain animal behaviour
        Learning Outcomes

        ​To evaluate the use of the adaptationist approach in studying behaviour 

        ​To critically appraise factors affecting the evolution of reproductive behaviour and the evolution of altruism and cooperation

        ​​To assess comparative approaches in the study of animal cognition and critically evaluate why cognitive processes of animals might not be, and often are not, analogous to human cognitive processes

      • Current Skills and Topics in Evolutionary Biology (LIFE324)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterSecond Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting60:40
        Aims

        ​To develop in students the skills to construct phylogenetic trees and to use them to infer the evolutionary origins of novel traits, using the latest software packages

         To encourage students to explore key concepts in contemporary evolutionary biology To develop in students knowledge and deep understanding in selected areas of evolutionary biology, providing opportunities for students to apply, critically evaluate and interpret evolutionary knowledge and ideas.
        Learning Outcomes

        ​To construct, graphically display and critically evaluate phylogenetic trees from phenotypic characters and DNA sequences

        ​To use phylogenetic trees to generate and test hypotheses about the evolutionary history of selected traits, and detect molecular signatures of selection within nucleotide or amino acid sequence

        ​To critically evaluate theoretical frameworks and empirical evidence relating to a selection of current research themes in evolutionary biology

      • Science Communication (ENVS393)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterWhole Session
        Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
        Aims
      • Provide key transferable skills​ to undergraduates, including: communication, presentation, practical classroom skills and team working.

      • ​Provide classoom based experience for undergraduates who are considering teaching as a potential career

      • ​Encourage a new generation of STEM teachers.

      • Provide role models for pupils within schools located in areas of high deprivation.​

      • Increase University of Liverpool widening participation activites within merseyside.​

      • Learning Outcomes

        ​Have an understanding of the UK educational system and relevant teaching and learning styles.

        ​Have an understanding of the Widening Participation Agenda

        Have an understanding of relevant STEM subjects and activities that would link into the National Curriculum

        ​Develop appropriate STEM activities for KS2 and KS3 school groups that link with the National Curriculum

        ​Reflect on and evaluate the effectiveness of the outreach acivities and their delivery

        ​Be able to apply the relevant protocols and safeguarding practice ​when delivering within a school setting

        ​Be able to apply practical knowledge of effective delivery styles when engaging with primary or secondary aged pupils

        ​Have experience of planning the delivery of a project

        ​Have experience of team working

        ​Have experience of science communication in a variety of situations

      The programme detail and modules listed are illustrative only and subject to change.


      Teaching and Learning

      Teaching strategies include a mix of lectures, tutorials, workshops, field classes, research vessel cruises, laboratory work, computer sessions, group projects and individual work under supervision. You will typically receive around 15 hours of formal teaching each week, as well as about 60 hours on residential field courses each year. You will study four modules per semester. A module might involve two one-hour lectures each week, and a laboratory or computer-based practical as well. Tutorials are an integral part of our approach, involving groups of 5-7 students meeting regularly with a member of academic staff to discuss study skills, careers, current research and topical issues.

      As you progress through your degree, you are increasingly challenged to engage with current debates, to think critically and to study independently. You will do an ‘Honours Project’ throughout Year Three, which is a piece of independent research (field, lab or data analysis) on a topic of your choice, supervised by a member of academic staff. If you opt for the four-year integrated master’s programmes, you will spend 50% of your final year on a ‘master’s project’ working closely within a research group on an area which may well generate publishable results.

      A number of the School’s degree programmes involve laboratory and field work. The field work is carried out in various locations, ranging from inner city to coastal and mountainous environments. We consider applications from prospective students with disabilities on the same basis as all other students, and reasonable adjustments will be considered to address barriers to access.


      Assessment

      Assessment matches the learning objectives for each module and may take the form of written exams, coursework submissions in the form of essays, scientific papers, briefing notes or lab/field notebooks, oral and poster presentations and contributions to group projects.