Ecology D

15 credits

Syllabus, Master's level, 1BG382

A revised version of the syllabus is available.
Education cycle
Second cycle
Main field(s) of study and in-depth level
Biology A1N
Grading system
Fail (U), Pass (3), Pass with credit (4), Pass with distinction (5)
Finalised by
The Faculty Board of Science and Technology, 2 February 2023
Responsible department
Biology Education Centre

Entry requirements

Bachelor's degree including 90 credits in biology, chemistry and/or earth sciences of which at least 60 credits in biology, including 10 credits in ecology. Proficiency in English equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary course English 6.

Learning outcomes

The course gives an overview of ongoing ecological research and constitutes a basis for studies for second-cycle studies and work within fields requiring knowledge in ecology ranging from research in evolutionary ecology to practical work in nature conservation.

On completion of the course, the student should be able to:

  • account for behavioural-ecological theories of sexual selection, foraging, altruism, cooperation, signalling and communication
  • demonstrate understanding of plant and animal life histories
  • quantify and interpret diversity patterns
  • account for theories of population dynamics, interspecific competition and trophic interactions in food webs
  • carry out simple computer simulations of population dynamics
  • plan, carry out and statistically evaluate an ecological study and present the results orally and in writing
  • critically review and discuss primary scientific texts in Ecology
  • discuss the potential and limitations of biology and its role in society.

The course includes the module Generic competences. After passing this module, the student should be able to:

  • account for ethical aspects of research and development, including questions of plagiarism and equal opportunities/equal treatment.


Behavioural ecology including the connection between ecology, evolutionary theory, sexual selection and foraging, mating systems, kinship, altruism, cooperation and group living, adaptations to biological enemies, the evolution of signals and communication and basic life history. Ecology and evolution of plant life histories, covering seed germination and dispersal as well as pollination ecology and an introduction to plant demography. Quantification and interpreation of diversity patterns. Models for population growth and population regulation as well as for interspecific competition and trophic interactions (e.g. Lotka-Volterra models, harvesting models), and food web theory. Ethics, plagiarism and equal opportunities/equal treatment.


The course comprises a field course and a theory part that consists of lectures, computer simulations, calculation exercises and seminars. The course includes integrated communication training with feedback and self-assessment.


Modules: Theory 10 credits; Field course 3 credits; Generic competences 1 credit; Seminar series Biology's role in society 1 credit.

The theory part is examined through a written examination and requires active participation in seminars and exercises. The field course is presented both in writing (project report) and orally. Generic competences are examined through written tests. Seminar series Biology's role in society requires active participation.

If there are special reasons for doing so, an examiner may make an exception from the method of assessment indicated and allow a student to be assessed by another method. An example of special reasons might be a certificate regarding special pedagogical support from the disability coordinator of the university.

Other directives

The course can not at the same time be included with 1BG200 Ecology or 1BG040 Ecology L.