BIOLOGICAL OCEANOGRAPHY

BIOLOGICAL OCEANOGRAPHY

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iten
Code
98797
ACADEMIC YEAR
2019/2020
CREDITS
6 credits during the 2nd year of 10590 HYDROGRAPHY AND OCEANOGRAPHY (LM-75) GENOVA
SCIENTIFIC DISCIPLINARY SECTOR
BIO/07
LANGUAGE
English
TEACHING LOCATION
GENOVA (HYDROGRAPHY AND OCEANOGRAPHY)
semester
1° Semester
Teaching materials

OVERVIEW

Biological oceanography aims at highlighting the relationships between the biotic component (from mono- to multicellular organisms, from autotrophs to heterotrophs) and the physico-chemical features of the ocean. The levels of interaction are multiple, from global scale to local scale to the microscopic size. The course completes, by a biological point of view, the knowledge of the student on oceanographic processes.

AIMS AND CONTENT

LEARNING OUTCOMES

The course highlights the relationships between the environmental forcing (physical, morphological, chemical) and the development and balance of the marine ecosystems, highlighting the global-scale effects as well as the local-scale processes. Some natural features of the oceans will be analysed, and also some human-affected processes. Basic ecological and biological information will be provided, related to trophic webs and biogeochemical cycles. Common sampling and analytical protocols will be described and discussed, using recent scientific literature.

AIMS AND LEARNING OUTCOMES

Attendance and participation to the proposed activities will allow the student to complete by a biological point of view the knowledge on the oceanographic processes .

The student will be able to:

  • Define and describe biogeochemical processes in the marine environment
  • Highlight the main features of  biogeochemical processes in the marine environment
  • Classify and compare the relationships between biotic and abiotic components of the ecosystems in specific environments
  • Critically select for sampling and analytical methods to design the study of biogeochemical processes.
  • Debate and communicate effectively the arguments using a proper vocabulary.

PREREQUISITES

The effective participation is based on a consolidated knowledge of the physical and chemical oceanography.

Teaching methods

The course will have lectures and practice in the DiSTAV labs.

Multimedia presentations will be provided.

In the lab the most common methods described and analysed during the lectures will be applied. Students will work in group, organising and discussing their activity with the professor’s advice.

SYLLABUS/CONTENT

The following subjects will be introduced and discussed:

  • Spatial and functional definition of the marine areas
  • Basic ecology: organism-population-community, producers and consumers, trophic webs and strategies, limiting factors
  • Interactions between the biotic component and the main marine features (depth, bottom morphology, water column structure, water mass movements (currents and waves), temperature, salinity, light, dissolved oxygen, inorganic nutrients, organic matter): examples in peculiar environments
  • Human-activity effects on oceanic and coastal areas: dystrophic events, exploitation, pollution on local and global scale
  • Laboratory activity: practice on the most common analytical protocols for scientific research; sampling strategy design for different environments and purposes.

RECOMMENDED READING/BIBLIOGRAPHY

All presentations  and other useful materials will be uploaded on AulaWeb at the end of the lectures.

The following books are suggested to improve basic information. They are available in the M. P. N. Sciences School library.

Lalli C.M & Parsons T.R. (1993) Biological oceanography. An introduction. Pergamon Press.

Odum E.P. (1988) Basi di ecologia. Piccin-Nuova Libraria.

Scientific publications will provide up-to-date information.

TEACHERS AND EXAM BOARD

Ricevimento: Contact the Professor by e-mail or telephone for further explanations or problems.

LESSONS

Teaching methods

The course will have lectures and practice in the DiSTAV labs.

Multimedia presentations will be provided.

In the lab the most common methods described and analysed during the lectures will be applied. Students will work in group, organising and discussing their activity with the professor’s advice.

EXAMS

Exam description

The exam will consist of written answers to questions related to the arguments discussed during the lessons. The exam will be passed with a vote equal to or higher than 18/30.

5 exam dates will be available in summer (June, July, September) and 2 dates in winter (January, February).

Assessment methods

More details on the exam will be provided during the lessons.

The written exam will verify the knowledge of the arguments, the ability at linking practice and theoretical information. The identification of the main features of each argument and the ability to summarise them will be evaluated, together with the use of a proper vocabulary.

Exam schedule

Date Time Location Type Notes
24/01/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto + Orale
07/02/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto + Orale
12/06/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto + Orale
26/06/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto + Orale
10/07/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto + Orale
24/07/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto + Orale
04/09/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto + Orale
18/09/2020 14:00 GENOVA Scritto + Orale

FURTHER INFORMATION

Attendance to lessons and practice in the lab is recommended