Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Aquatic Botany
Academic Year
Semester 1
Reading List
Other Staff

Course Delivery



Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Field report  (1500 words)  30%
Semester Assessment Herbarium collection  (Preservation & identification of 12 macrophytes)  30%
Semester Exam 2 Hours   40%
Supplementary Assessment Students must take elements of assessment equivalent to those that led to the failure of the module.  60%
Supplementary Exam 2 Hours   Students must take elements of assessment equivalent to those that led to the failure of the module.  40%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

1. Describe the diversity of aquatic algae and angiosperms, and evaluate their importance in aquatic ecosystems from a community perspective.

2. Describe and discuss the influence of the physio-chemical characteristics on the physiology, ecology, reproductive biology, primary production etc. in aquatic algae and angiosperms across all aquatic habitats.

3. Demonstrate the ability to present, and accurately identify, marine macrophytes to species level.

4. Evaluate the saltmarsh habitat at Ynys Las and classify according to the NVC method.

Brief description

The aim of this module is, through a series of integrated lectures and practicals, to introduce students to the diversity of aquatic algae and angiosperms. The module will explore the evolution, genetic diversity, biogeography, physiology, ecology etc. of these organisms.


The module begins by introducing the students to the diversity of cyanobacteria, algae and angiosperms occupying a variety of aquatic habitats. Further detail will be presented covering physiology, adaptation, reproduction, biogeography, chemical ecology, primary productivity, community interactions, nutrient cycling etc. The lectures will also cover the applied uses of coastal vegetation.
A field survey of the salt marsh at Ynys Las, using the National Vegetation Classification methodology to identify salt marsh communities, will be undertaken. This practical will contextualize students’ knowledge, and provide experience of in situ vegetation identification. A second practical, creating a herbarium collection, will enhance the students’ understanding of algal diversity and identification skills.

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number Collection of data in terms of quality and quantity. The students will be expected to scrutinise their techniques and interpret their results.
Communication Listening and oral skills during the lectures and subsequent discussions will be encouraged. The students will be expected to produce coherent written documentation for their examinations and field trip/practical reports.
Improving own Learning and Performance Outside the formal contact hours, students will be expected to research materials, manage time and meet deadlines. The practical classes/field trip will provide an opportunity for students to explore their own learning styles and preferences, and identify their needs and barriers to learning. Students will be able to review and monitor their progress and plan for improvement of personal performance through self-awareness and reflection.
Information Technology The students will be required to access online databases such as ISI Web of Knowledge and Google Scholar to find primary literature. They will also be expected to be competent in the use of word processing programs and spreadsheets for delivery of assessed work.
Personal Development and Career planning Students will gain confidence and self-awareness of their personal skills and their ability to evaluate biological problems and objectively assess the quality of proposed solution. Feedback will be given where appropriate.
Problem solving Students will be encouraged to critically analyse information provided during the lectures and orally identify appropriate solutions where problems arise. Feedback will be given.
Research skills Students will research the topic beyond the depth and scope of the lecture material during their independent study using a variety of literature sources. They will be expected to produce academically appropriate reports and where necessary comment, evaluate and scrutinize information obtained/experiment conducted. Practicals will enable students to develop standard identification/surveying skills.
Subject Specific Skills Subject specific concepts/techniques relating to aquatic macro/microphytes will be developed.
Team work Students will work effectively in pairs/small groups during field trips/practical classes. They will be expected to contribute to the planning and organization of the practical exercises, delegation of tasks through persuasion and negotiation, and the execution of techniques relevant to the practicals/fieldtrips with the cooperation of group members.


This module is at CQFW Level 5