Skip to main content
CODE 83950
ACADEMIC YEAR 2024/2025
CREDITS
SCIENTIFIC DISCIPLINARY SECTOR BIO/07
LANGUAGE Italian
TEACHING LOCATION
  • GENOVA
SEMESTER 2° Semester
MODULES Questo insegnamento è un modulo di:
TEACHING MATERIALS AULAWEB

AIMS AND CONTENT

LEARNING OUTCOMES

The aim of the subject is to provide solid basic knowledge on the structure and functioning of natural systems, with particular emphasis on the mechanisms that determine the distribution and abundance of organisms according to their relationships with the environment. The course provides basic knowledge about the classification and distribution of ecosystems, the interactions between species, biodiversity and ecosysetm functioning. The subject also aims to provide evidences of global climate change and of the main direct anthropic disturbances. The teaching highlights the hierarchical and interdisciplinary nature of ecology with the aim of encouraging students to deal with complex and multi-scalar disciplines and problems.

AIMS AND LEARNING OUTCOMES

The subject aims to provide solid basic knowledge on the structure and functioning of natural systems, with particular emphasis on the mechanisms that determine both the distribution and abundance of organisms as well as their relations with the environment.

The teaching highlights the hierarchical and interdisciplinary nature of ecology with the aim of encouraging students to deal with complex and multi-scalar disciplines and problems. This objective is reflected in the organization of the program that runs along the hierarchical scale of ecological organization, from the mechanisms underlying biodiversity (evolutionary ecology), passing through the adaptations of plant and animal organisms to the environment (autoecology), to population dynamics (demoecology), up to the structure and functioning of communities and ecosystems (synecology).

The subject will provide the basis for further specialized studies in ecosystem and applied ecology, biodiversity conservation and sustainable environmental management.

The subject also intends to pursue learning outcomes related to the area of ​​soft skills (functional literacy competence, citizenship competence and project design competence).

TEACHING METHODS

The lessons will be held in the classroom and will consist of frontal lessons, the creation of self-assessment tests (through wooclap questionnaires), the creation of a subject glossary and the design of ecological surveys where students will be able to put the acquired skills into practice,

All face-to-face activities will be carried out in compliance with the capacity limits of the classrooms / laboratories and the distance provided for by the current legislation following the emergency COVID19.

Please refer to the specific AulaWeb application for teaching for any updates due to changes in the health and epidemiological situation.

SYLLABUS/CONTENT

The teaching program provides for the presentation and discussion of the following topics:

Introduction to ecology

• Notes on the history of ecological thinking. Ecology and environmentalism.

• Natural Selection and Evolution.

 

Autoecology

• The physical environment: climate, soil, water, limiting factors.

• Adaptations of plant organisms.

• Adaptations of animal organisms.

 

Population ecology

• Dispersion of organisms in space. Aggregate, random, uniform spatial distributions.

• Estimate of the density and number of individuals in a population.

• Elementary growth of a population. Mortality and fertility tables. Growth rates. Exponential and logistic models. Distribution of ages in a population. Mortality and survival curves.

• Intra- and interspecific relations. Competition, predation, symbiosis. Gause principle and competition models.

 

Community ecology

• Elements of analysis of the structure of the communities. Diversity and evenness. Species-area curve.

• Balance model, area and distance effects. Habitat and ecological niche concepts.

• Populations and communities in ecological gradients. Ecotones and the "margin effect" concept. Climax concept. Ecological successions.

• Metapopulations and metacommunities.

 

Ecosystems ecology

• Ecosystem concept. Ecosystem structure.

• Fundamental concepts of energy. Food chains. Trophic networks. Trophic levels.

• Primary production. Grazing and detritus food chains. Trophic structures and ecological pyramids.

• Biomes: tropical rain forest, temperate forest, boreal forest, prairie, savannah, Mediterranean biome, tundra, desert. Aquatic, marine and freshwater, ecosystems. Transitional ecosystems.

• Biogeochemical cycles.

 

Man and the environment

•  Climate changes. Oceanic acidification. Study cases

RECOMMENDED READING/BIBLIOGRAPHY

A disposizione (scaricabili da Aulaweb/Teams o presso il Docente). Power Point delle lezioni e articoli scientifici.

Alcuni testi consigliati:

Pusceddu, Sarà & Viaroli, Ecologia, UTET.

Smith & Smith, Elementi di ecologia, Pearson.

TEACHERS AND EXAM BOARD

LESSONS

LESSONS START

The lessons of the first semester will start from September 21, 2020, and will end by January 22, 2021. The lessons of the second semester will start from February 15, 2021 and will end by June 11, 2021. Consult detailed timetable at the following link: https://easyacademy.unige.it/portalestudenti/

EXAMS

EXAM DESCRIPTION

The exam consists of an oral test concerning the topics covered in the course. The exam is passed if the student has obtained a grade greater than or equal to 18/30.

Five appeals will be available in the summer session (June, July, September) and 2 calls in the winter session (January-February).

Please refer to the specific AulaWeb application for teaching for any updates due to changes in the health and epidemiological situation.

ASSESSMENT METHODS

Details on how to prepare for the exam and the degree of detail required for each topic will be provided during the lessons.

The exam will verify the actual acquisition of knowledge, which the student will have to be able to connect and integrate. The ability to synthesize and recognize the main aspects of the topic will be evaluated and the ability to expose the arguments clearly and with correct terminology will also be considered.

FURTHER INFORMATION

Frequency is recommended.

Students who have valid certification of physical or learning disabilities on file with the University and who wish to discuss possible accommodations or other circumstances regarding lectures, coursework and exams, should speak both with the instructor and with Professor Sara Ferrando (sara.ferrando@unige.it), the Department's disability liaison.

Agenda 2030 - Sustainable Development Goals

Agenda 2030 - Sustainable Development Goals
Climate action
Climate action
Life below water
Life below water
Life on land
Life on land

OpenBadge

 PRO3 - Soft skills - Alfabetica base 1 - A
PRO3 - Soft skills - Alfabetica base 1 - A
 PRO3 - Soft skills - Creazione progettuale base 1 - A
PRO3 - Soft skills - Creazione progettuale base 1 - A
 PRO3 - Soft skills - Sociale base 1 - A
PRO3 - Soft skills - Sociale base 1 - A