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Unit of study_

BIOL3020: Applied Plant Function

Plants are truly amazing. Plants lift water to heights that defy physics. Plants take sunlight and simple inorganic ingredients to create a bewildering diversity of organic compounds. What's even more amazing is that we are only just beginning to understand how plants achieve these amazing feats. This unit explores how plants function and illustrates how this knowledge can be applied to real-World problems. Major topics include how plants function as integrated systems, resource partitioning and the dilemmas faced by plants, interaction of plants with the world around them. Emphasis will be placed on integration of plant responses from molecular through to whole plant scales, and how this knowledge can be practically applied to maximise plant growth, optimise use of water and nutrients, and understand how plants affect (and are affected by) their environment. Lectures are augmented by experimental work that leads to practical hands-on experience with research tools and techniques that can be applied across the sciences, and bespoke instruments used in the world's leading plant science research laboratories. This unit of study complements other senior units of study in the Plant Science minor and is essential for those seeking a career in plant biology and plant-related fields, including ecology, cell biology, genetics, breeding, agriculture, molecular biology, environmental law, education and the arts.

Code BIOL3020
Academic unit Life and Environmental Sciences Academic Operations
Credit points 6
BIOL2X23 or BIOL2X30 or BIOL2X31 or AGEN2001 or AGEN2005 or BIOL2X09
BIOL3043 or BIOL3943 or AGEN2005 or PLNT3001 or PLNT3901 or PLNT3002 or PLNT3902 or ENSY3001
Assumed knowledge:
Knowledge of concepts and skills in BIOL1XX6

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. demonstrate an understanding of the key properties of plants
  • LO2. communicate the factors that determine how plants function as complex systems
  • LO3. identify the key mechanisms plants use to communicate among distant organs
  • LO4. identify and interpret peer-reviewed research
  • LO5. explain dilemmas plants face and how they arrive at an optimal solution
  • LO6. communicate ways in which plants interact with the world around them
  • LO7. describe how knowledge of plant function can be applied to real-world problems
  • LO8. illustrate how different aspects of plant function combine to affect growth
  • LO9. use research tools to investigate plant function.