Module Identifier RS10310  
Module Title CROP SCIENCE  
Academic Year 2007/2008  
Co-ordinator Dr Malcolm H Leitch  
Semester Semester 2  
Course delivery Lecture   2 x 1 hour lectures per week  
  Practical   5 x 3 hour practicals during semester  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Assessment Essay  20%
Semester Assessment3 Hours Practical examination Outcome assessed: 4  20%
Semester Exam1.5 Hours Outcomes assessed: 1, 2, 3  60%
Supplementary Exam1.5 Hours  100%

Learning outcomes

On completion of this module students will be able to:

1.   describe crop growth processes;
2.   analyse effects of environmental variables on growth.
3.   predict the consequences of variation in environmental variables on crop growth;
4.   identify crop species.


The lecture course is principally concerned with crop growth and provides an introduction to the origin and growth of the shoot and root systems; leaf growth and functioning; photosynthesis and factors determining rates of photosynthesis; crop growth analysis, in particular in terms of radiation interception and radiation use efficiency; seed quality and germination; plant population density effects; crop water relations and nutrient requirements; introduction to plant-microbe interactions. The practicals investigate the vegetative and reproductive structure of grasses and keys are used to identify species; the internal anatomy of leaves, stems and roots; developmental changes in wheat and oilseed rape; inflorescence structure in cereals, measurement of crop growth characteristics.


The module aims to provide a comprehensive series of lectures and practicals that demonstrate the main processes in crop growth and development and to use integrated approaches to analysing the principal environmental factors that affect the rate of crop growth.

Module Skills

Communication The essay will require students to communicate in writing.  
Improving own Learning and Performance Students will be required to manage themselves in order to submit coursework to a deadline.  
Team work Some of the practicals will require group work.  

Reading Lists

** General Text
Forbes J C, & Watson R D (1992) Plants in Agriculture Cambridge University Press 0713128917
Gardner F P, Pearce R B & Mitchell RL (1985) Physiology of Crop Plants Iowa State University Press 031381376X
Langer R H M, & Hill G D (1991) Agricultural Plants 2nd. Cambridge University Press 0521405637
Weston G D (ed) (1994) Crop Productivity Butterworth-Heinemann 0750605626
Weston, G D (ed) Crop Physiology Butterworth-Heinemann 075060560X


This module is at CQFW Level 4