Faculty of Science

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2013 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

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FacultyFaculty of Science
Organisational UnitSchool of Biological Sciences
OfferedClayton Second semester 2013 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Professor John Beardall


How plants respond to their environment, from molecular changes in gene expression to effects on communities. Plant development and responses to environmental stresses such as drought, temperature and salinisation, and global climate change. Manipulation of plant performance by means of genetic engineering and the ethical issues involved.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Describe the basic processes governing the ways in which plants respond to their environment, from alterations in patterns of gene expression, through differences in metabolic activities to changes in morphology;

  1. Explain the mechanisms by which plants cope with specific stresses in their environments, including drought, salinisation, extreme temperatures and global climate change;

  1. Demonstrate a critical, analytical approach to scientific research and have developed skills in writing scientific reports.


Examination (2.5 hours): 60%
Practical work: 40%

Chief examiner(s)

Contact hours

Two 1-hour lectures and the equivalent of 3 hours laboratory work per week


12 points from level two BIO or GEN units. Recommended: BIO2282