BIO 360 - Tropical Ecosystems
BIO 360 Tropical Ecosystems
Department of Biology
Eastern Connecticut State University
Dr. Phillip Elliott Science 361 firstname.lastname@example.org x 54496
Dr. Patricia Szczys Science 363 email@example.com x 54324
Bio 360 Tropical Ecosystems is a 1.0 credit course open to all biology majors. The primary objective of the course is to increase your understanding of tropical ecosystems by examining fundamental concepts of tropical ecology, as well as various topics currently attracting considerable research attention. Because this course is uniquely related to BIO 320 Tropical Biology – Costa Rica (see below), considerable effort will be devoted to activities/assignments that are designed to enhance the educational value of the Costa Rica field experience. In addition to factual and conceptual content, the course will also focus on the design and execution of field studies in tropical biology.
Course Relationship to BIO 320:
This course serves as a prerequisite for Bio 320 Tropical Biology-Costa Rica; thus, students must satisfactorily complete Bio 360 in order to participate in Bio 320. Biology majors, who have completed or will have completed BIO 220 and BIO 230 by May 2010, may count Bio 320/360 as one of the required upper-level biology courses for the major, provided that they complete Bio 320 and Bio 360 with grades of C or better.
The seminar format for this course places special emphasis on at least two facets that may not ordinarily be stressed in other courses: attendance and out-of-class preparation. In classes with seminar formats, students who fail to attend or who attend but fail to complete reading assignments, not only penalize themselves, but seriously detract from the quality of the course for everyone involved. Therefore, students will be allowed no more than one excused absence, and they will be expected to come to class prepared to participate in class discussions and other exercises.
Course grades will be based on the instructors' assessment of each student's classroom performance. Attendance, completion of reading assignments, participation in class discussions, oral presentations, and oral responses to questions will be weighed heavily in this assessment. If considered necessary, unannounced in-class written assignments will be required and/or a comprehensive written examination will be given during Session 8 of the course.
Tropical Nature: Life and Death in the Rainforests of Central and South America by A. Forsyth and K. Miyata.
Tentative Course Schedule:
Date Topic(s) Reading Assignment
Jan 30 Introduction
Discussion of Field Projects
Assignment of Research Papers
Video: Selva Verde: The Green Jungle
Feb 13 Rain Forest Ecology: Productivity & Terborgh:The Paradox of Tropical Luxuriance
Species Diversity Forsyth/Miyata: Chapters 1-3
Feb 27 Species Interactions and Community Forsyth/Miyata: Chapters 4-10
Mar 12 Guest Speaker:
Mar 26 Conservation Issues in the Neotropics
Apr 9 Conservation Issues in the Neotropics
Apr 23 Conducting Field Projects: Data Collection, Analysis, Presentation
Apr 30 Final Exam/ Preparations for BIO 320