Aquatic Biology 3B BIOL3030

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Biodiversity One Health Vet Med
  • Credits: 60
  • Level: Level 3 (SCQF level 9)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course will present a broad coverage of Aquatic Biology. Specific topics may include:

■ animal physiology

■ parasite biology

■ ecological and developmental biology

■ quantitative approaches to ecology including experimental design and data analysis

■ designing and implementing a mini research project


The course will consist of lectures, field work, laboratories and tutorials as arranged (the timetable varies from week to week).

There will be a short residential field course in March.

Requirements of Entry

Normally, this course is only open to students admitted to Level-3 of a programme for which this is a compulsory course. The course may also be available to visiting students, at the discretion of the Life Sciences Chief Adviser and the Course Coordinator.

Excluded Courses

BIOL4066 Marine & Freshwater Biology 3B, BIOL4138 Zoology 3B and BIOL3002 Animal Biology 3B


The course will be assessed by means of a 3-hour examination paper (60%) and in-course assessment (40%). The in-course assessment will include research papers, a poster presentation and an oral research proposal.

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? No

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. Where, exceptionally, reassessment on Honours courses is required to satisfy professional/accreditation requirements, only the overall course grade achieved at the first attempt will contribute to the Honours classification. For non-Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 


There is no reassessment opportunity for those items of assessment which are dependent on the student's attendance at a particular session or sessions, or for items of assessment which are undertaken as a group exercise. These items are:

■ One research paper

■ Poster presentation

■ Oral research proposal

Course Aims

The aims of the course are:

■ To provide students with a broad-based knowledge and understanding of Aquatic Biology in relation to the field of Marine and Freshwater Biology;

■ To further advance laboratory and field techniques in Aquatic Biology in relation to the field of Marine and Freshwater Biology;

■ To develop skills relating to independent and critical thinking and forming research hypotheses;

■ To provide opportunities to further improve written and oral communication skills;

■ To advance skills related to quantitative analysis of data relevant to Aquatic Biology in relation to the field of Marine and Freshwater Biology.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ Demonstrate a broad understanding of the central facts and the experimental basis of modern Aquatic Biology in relation to the field of Marine and Freshwater Biology;

■ Solve problems of a numerical or logical nature in the context of this understanding;

■ Apply practical skills in fundamental techniques in Aquatic Biology and analyse and interpret results obtained from using these techniques;

■ Demonstrate proficient communication skills by giving well-constructed oral and written presentations;

■ Appraise original scientific literature and promote critical thinking in relation to information obtained and communicated;

■ Form a research question on an Aquatic Biology related topic;

■ Design and carry out a small scale research project.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.