MSci Zoology / Course details
Year of entry: 2022
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Course unit details:
|Unit level||Level 2|
|Teaching period(s)||Semester 1|
|Available as a free choice unit?||No|
You will gain an understanding of comparative animal physiology. Physiology is the study of how animal’s function at levels from the cell to the whole organism. You will also learn about the physiological plasticity of animals and how the ability adapt these systems is key to living in a changing environment. Topics include cardio-respiratory systems, digestion, metabolism, osmoregulation and how internal clocks time hibernation and how animals maintain their optimal water and ion balance. This course explores physiological processes from a comparative perspective, examining how physiological innovation has underpinned the evolution of animals.
To study physiological plasticity across different levels of biological organisation and to understand how this allows animals to adapt to their environment. To study mechanisms of physiological adaption in response to environmental challenges including: thermoregulation, osmoregulation, gas convection and respiration in animals.
An understanding of animal physiology, emphasising how to compare and contrast the physiological processes across different animal groups that govern their day to day function. Students will gain an appreciation of how response strategies are used to cope with different external environments and how physiological plasticity is key to maintaining and adjusting physiological processes in terrestrial and aquatic animals.
The nature and fundamental mechanisms of environmental adaptation will be discussed under the broad lecture themes of:
• Osmoregulation and excretion
• Respiratory systems
• Cardiovascular systems
• Muscle systems
• Energy & Metabolism
• Clocks and hibernation
All lecture slides will be posted on Blackboard. Journal articles that support the lecture material, and interactive learning tools specifically created to enhance learning, will be available online. Self-assessment exercises will be provided throughout and four online summative assessments will contribute to your overall unit mark.
- Problem solving
- Online coursework in the form of multiple answer questions requires a small degree of problem solving.
- You will be encouraged to extract additional information from the published literature through additional reading.
- Written communication
- Examinations are essay based.
1 hour 30 minute written examination (75%) consisting of one essay questions (1 chosen from 4 questions)
1 graphic abstract assignment (15%) consisting of one graphical abstract from a paper related to course content
MCQ test (10% total) consisting of four separate online MCQ tests (worth 2.5% each) on formative course content
You will receive feedback from eLearning exercises and coursework assessments during the course. A online drop-in clinic will be available after the exam will allow feedback on exam performance if requested.
Hill, Wyse & Anderson (2012) Animal Physiology (3rd edition). Sinauer Associates (recommended)
Willmer P, Stone G & Johnston I (2004) Environmental Physiology of Animals (2nd Edition). Blackwell Science (recommended)
|Scheduled activity hours|
|Assessment written exam||1.5|
|Independent study hours|
|Jonathan Codd||Unit coordinator|