Module Identifier RS30120  
Academic Year 2006/2007  
Co-ordinator Dr Graham P Harris  
Semester Semester 2  
Other staff Dr John M Warren, Dr Peter Dennis, Mr David R Powell  
Course delivery Lecture   2 x 2 hour lectures per week  
  Seminars / Tutorials   2 x 3 hour seminars per semester  
  Practical   3 x 3 hour practicals per semester  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Assessment 3000 WORD ESSAY  50%
Semester Exam3 Hours WRITTEN EXAMINATION  50%
Supplementary Assessment3 Hours WRITTEN EXAMINATION  100%

Learning outcomes

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

Identify patterns and use of biodiversity.

Explain the causes of biodiversity loss and evaluate their implications.

Discuss the approaches to valuing biodiversity.

Identify and evaluate conservation policies at the local, National and Global level.

Brief description

The module considers the nature and extent of biodiversity from the level of genetic diversity to biomes. Methods of measuring and monitoring change in biodiversity at different levels are introduced. Rates of biodiversity loss and the ecological implications in conjunction with factors creating change are discussed. Approaches to determining the use and values of biodiversity are outlined entering into the fields of political ecology, conservation ethics and religion, and ecological economics. Techniques for conservation of plant, animal and genetic resources are considered with particular reference to the processes of monitoring and review of the efficacy of implementation and enforcement of this approach. The role of local communities/indigenous peoples and the use of Traditional Knowledge in the conservation of global biodiversity is assessed. International policies, treaties and systems for conserving biodiversity are critically appraised.


Definitions and patterns of biodiversity.
Measuring biodiversity and monitoring change.
Loss of biodiversity: extent and causes.
Implications of biodiversity loss.
Valuing biodiversity: uses of biological resources.
Valuing biodiversity: cultural, political, and social issues.
Role of indigenous peoples in biodiversity conservation.
Commercial use of biodiversity and traditional knowledge.
Community involvement in biodiversity conservation-case studies.
Issues in protected area management.
Current controversial issue in conservation
Global biodiversity policies: Rio and Johannesburg.

Module Skills

Problem_solving Identify factors which might influence potential solutions. Evaluate advantages and disadvantages of potential solutions.  
Research skills Produce academically appropriate reports.  
Communication Read in different contexts and for different purposes. Write for different purposes and audiences.  
Information Technology Present information and data.  


This module is at CQFW Level 6