Module Identifier RS36210  
Academic Year 2003/2004  
Co-ordinator Dr Peter D Jenkins  
Semester Semester 1  
Other staff Dr Iwan G Owen, Dr Malcolm H Leitch  
Course delivery Lecture   20 Hours 10 x 2 hour lectures  
  Practical   12 Hours 4 x 3 hour practicals  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours Outcomes assessed: 2, 3, 4  80%
Semester Assessment 3000 word critical review of research paper Outcomes assessed: 1  20%
Supplementary Assessment Candidates must re-take the element(s) of assessment that led to failing the module  100%

Learning outcomes

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

(1) Evaluate the potential of exploiting knowledge of basic mechanisms to improve crop management practice
(2) Assess the level of precision with which inputs can be determined in crop production.
(3) Recommend practices for improving the quality of grazed and conserved herbage.
(4) Design production systems that offer long-term sustainability.

Brief description

The module examines how the physical environment and crop management decisions influence the growth, yield and quality of grass and arable crops. The aim is to explore how limitations may be overcome to maximize the efficiency of crop production systems. The module is taught through a series of lectures and visits and includes the following specific subject areas: herbage quality limitations and the potential for improving quality; evaluation of grass cultivars; nutrient cycling in grassland systems; grass sward improvement; silage and rumen microbiology; nitrogen nutrition of arable crops; fungicide strategies in cereals; precision farming; physiology of yield determination; phosphorus nutrition; novel crops; implications of climate change for crop and grassland production.

Transferable skills

.2 IT and information handling
Internet sources will need to be searched for reference work

.4 Writing in an academic context
This will be developed through the assignment involving a written review of a research paper. It will be further assessed in the written examination

.5 Oral discussion and presentation
Group discussion will be an integral part of the lecture sessions but will not be assessed independently

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
Loomis R S & Connor D J (1992) Crop ecology : productivity and management in agricultural systems Cambridge University Press
McDonald P Henderson N and Heron S (1991) The biochemistry of silage 2nd.
Minson D J (1990) Forage in ruminant nutrition Academic Press
Whitehead D C (1995) Grassland nitrogen CAB International
Bazzaz F and Sombroek W editors (1996) Global climate change and agricultural production FAO & J Wiley and Sons


This module is at CQFW Level 6