Gwybodaeth Modiwlau

Module Identifier
Module Title
Academic Year
Semester 2
Normally A or A/S level Biology or its equivalent.

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 16 x 1h lectures
Practical 3 x 3 h practicals (duplicated if class size requires)


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment 1.5 Hours   Practical examination  30%
Semester Exam 1.5 Hours   Written examination  70%
Supplementary Assessment 1.5 Hours   Single practical examination  30%
Supplementary Exam 1.5 Hours   Written examination  70%

Learning Outcomes

On completion of the module, the student should be able to

  • discuss the principles and terminology of plant form and its use in systematic classification
  • illustrate and identify the anatomical and morphological features of plant specimens at the macroscopic and microscopic levels
  • describe the biodiversity of the major groups of land flora.


The lectures explore the structural features found in the plant kingdom, starting with the basic types of cells and tissues. The morphologies and internal organization of plant organs are reviewed, covering: the primary growth of stems, leaves, roots, woody stems, flowers and fruits. Higher plants necessarily dominate this survey because of their complexity and abundance. Ecophysiological mechanisms are discussed where these reflect biodiversity.

The diversity of the modern land flora is discussed commencing with the nonvascular plants (mosses and liverworts). The vascular plants without seeds, such as ferns, are reviewed, including discussions of their possible evolutionary relationships with nonvascular plants on the one hand, and the early seed plants on the other. The diversity of seed plants, including gymnosperms and angiosperms, is examined, with emphasis on the distinction between monocots and dicots.

The practical sessions are held in the second half of the semester, and are integrated with the lectures. The practicals include a visit to the Tropical Glasshouse and outdoor plants of the Botany Gardens. An ecophysiological experiment in the Teaching Glasshouse demonstrates the effects of water saturation deficits and mineral nutrition in different species. The practicals also include microscopic analysis of plant internal structure and examination of plant material illustrating the diversity of the modern and fossil land flora.


The module provides a basic overview of plant biodiversity, including its evolutionary origins, and teaches the elementary knowledge of plant anatomy and morphology needed for the plant identification skills of botanists, zoologists and environmental scientists engaged in terrestrial fieldwork.

Reading List

Recommended Text
Campbell, N. and Reece, J. (2005) Biology 7th Benjamin Cummings Publishers Primo search
Reference Text
Mauseth, J.D. (2003) Botany 3rd Jones & Bartlett Primo search


This module is at CQFW Level 4