Module Identifier RS31910  
Academic Year 2001/2002  
Co-ordinator Dr Malcolm Leitch  
Semester Semester 1  
Other staff Dr Peter Jenkins  
Assessment Essay     20%  
  Exam   2 Hours   80%  

Syllabus / Curriculum design

The physiological limitations to optimum crop performance will be discussed, along with means of overcoming these limitations. Current management strategies will be reviewed, with emphasis on nutrition and disease. The objectives and achievements of plant breeding and research are reviewed. The course will include discussion of the variety development, registration, multiplication and certification procedures and the likely impact of advances in biotechnology on future crop production.   Arguments for and against the use of genetically modified organisms will be reviewed.

Learning outcomes

On completion of this module, students will be able to:

(i)   explain how physiological development is influenced by agronomic practice;

(ii)   identify factors affecting grain quality characteristics;

(iii)   describe the principles and practice of current cereal breeding programmes;

(iv)   appreciate the potential of crop biotechnology.

Aims of the module

To provide a comprehensive series of lectures that (a) identify the principal agronomic limitations to optimum crop performance and the means of overcoming these limitations; (b) identify the role of plant breeding in improving yield and quality of crop plants and (c) discuss the potential of new technologies for further crop improvement.

Reading Lists

Hay R and Walker A. (1989) An introduction to the physiology of crop yields. Longman Scientific
Hewitt H G et al. (1995) A vital role for fungicides in cereal production. BIOS Scientific Publishers Ltd
Hayward M D, Bosemark N O and Romagosa I. (1993) Plant breeding : principles and prospects. Chapman and Hall