GEOGG102 Environmental Data Acquisition and Analysis
(15 credits; Term 1)
Jan Axmacher and UCL Geography Laboratory Staff
- to develop skills in the analysis of complex environmental datasets
- to attain field surveying skills
- to develop skills in nutrient analysis and data interpretation
- to gain skills in taxonomy and microscopy
This core module for both the MSc Conservation and MSc Aquatic Science comprises a mixture of numerical analysis and laboratory methods teaching. It is strongly linked to the “Scientific Basis for Freshwater and Coastal Conservation” fieldclass module, and the samples and data we use partly originate from this field-class module.
Invertebrate samples taken in Norfolk will be identified, and water samples will be analysed for their nutrient content and alkalinity. Furthermore, students will learn some basic field surveying skills. The data collected both at UCL and as part of the “Scientific Basis” module will form the basis of a series of lectures and practical classes focussing on the statistical analysis of environmental and biological datasets.
The main sessions include:
- Identification of aquatic invertebrates
- Nutrient analysis with detailed investigations into precision and accuracy
- Multivariate statistical analysis of complex environmental and ecological datasets
- Surveying in the UCL quad and surrounding area.
Written report in the form of a scientific publication based on the data gathered in the Scientific Basis field class module and analysed within the framework of this module (3000 words max. - worth 8% of the overall assessment).
The course is based on practical work in the laboratory and lectures and practical exercises focusing on the numerical analysis.
At the end of the course students should:
- have an improved understanding of the biological and physical controls on the function and behaviour of environmental systems
- have experience in the implementation of field surveying techniques
- be aware of the quality and limitations of standard approaches used in water and sediment nutrient analysis
- have obtained skills in multivariate statistical analysis
- gain skills in the taxonomy of freshwater invertebrates