Module DXX-4530:
Forest Management Planning

Module Facts

Run by School of Natural Sciences

20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits

Semester 2

Organiser: Dr James Walmsley

Overall aims and purpose

The purpose of this module is to enable students to produce a forest / land management plan that (a) meets professional standards and (b) will enable the owner’s stated objectives for a particular forest area to be achieved. It provides an opportunity to apply existing knowledge and expertise, and develop it further. Interaction among student group members is expected in the production of the first section of the plan (site characterisation and assessment), while individual initiative is required in the development of a vision, policy and objectives, and the outlining of strategies and proposald to enable their implementation and monitoring. These should be supported by appropriate work programmes, production forecasts and cash flow forecasts. Students are expected to produce a management plan that is robust, realistic and legal: it should comply with all relevant legislation, guidelines and standards.

Course content

The origins and meaning of sustainable forest management; Pan-European operational level guidelines (PEOLG) and their implementation at national level. The forest / land management planning process: scoping; survey; analysis; synthesis; implementation; monitoring; review. Production of a forest / land management plan: site description, including use of forest datasets and other datasets to produce high quality maps using GIS and remote sensing (and full awareness of the limitations of such datasets, including missing / incorrect / non-existent data); desired characteristics and limiting factors; current levels, target levels and monitoring; general approaches to implementation; five-year work programme; cash flow forecast, including estimation of timber production, income and expenditure.

Assessment Criteria

good

All sections of the plan are present and all material is in the right section(s). There is a good site description, with only minor omissions of detail. Desired characteristics are sensible and realistic, and most limiting factors are identified. Current levels, target levels and monitoring requirements are given for all desired characteristics, and most are quantified. General approaches to implementation are workable and show understanding. The five-year work programme, production forecast and cash flow forecast are mainly consistent with earlier parts of the plan and with each other. The plan includes some minor inconsistencies. The plan would require minor revision before it could be put into practice.

excellent

All sections of the plan are present and all material is in the right section(s). There is a detailed, comprehensive site description. The vision and long-term policy are original and appropriate. Desired characteristics are both imaginative and realistic, and all limiting factors are identified. Current levels, target levels and monitoring requirements are given for all desired characteristics, and are fully quantified. General approaches to implementation show imagination and detailed understanding. The five-year work programme, production forecast and cash flow forecast are detailed, and completely consistent with earlier parts of the plan and with each other. The plan could be put into practice at once, without revision.

threshold

All sections of the plan are present and most material is in the right section(s). There is a basic site description, but some important details and maps are missing. Lists of desired characteristics and limiting factors are provided, but are either incomplete or repetitious. Current levels, target levels and monitoring requirements are confused / inappropriate / missing. General approaches to implementation are mostly sensible but lack detail. A five-year work programme, production forecast and cash flow forecast are included but there is a lack consistency with earlier parts of the plan or with each other. The plan includes sections which contradict other sections. The plan would require substantial revision before it could be put into practice.

Learning outcomes

  1. Develop an integrated forest management plan to meet stated management objectives.

  2. Show a critical understanding of the ways in which current forestry policies, legislation, standards and guidelines influence forest management planning and its outcomes

  3. Produce a detailed work programme, production forecast and cash flow forecast for the first five years of the plan.

  4. Utilise appropriate techniques and datasets in combination with a desktop GIS to construct maps and undertake spatial analyses in order to describe the study site and illustrate key aspects of the management plan, such as a felling plan, regeneration plan and long-term plan.

  5. Identify (using suitable text, maps produced using GIS and other appropriate techniques) suitable and realistic strategies and proposals that enable the vision, long term policy and management objectives for the plan to be met.

  6. Be able to draw up a vision, long-term policy and management objectives that are coherent, complimentary and appropriate for a specific site.

  7. Identify suitable indicators, targets and monitoring procedures which are appropriate and realistic for management objectives.

  8. Produce a forest management plan that is robust, coherent and holistic, in which individual sections compliment and enhance the document as a whole.

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
WRITTEN PLAN Land Management Plan 100

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Hours
Individual Project

Using a range of supporting learning materials via Blackboard, including GIS exercises, management planning library materials, case studies, pdf guides, discussion fora.

166
Practical classes and workshops

1 x 2-hour computer practical. 3 x 3-hour computer practical.

11
Fieldwork

1 × 8-hour forest visit. 1 x 5 hour forest visit.

13
Lecture

2 x 3-hour lecture / seminars. 2 x 2-hour lecture / seminars.

10

Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Numeracy - Proficiency in using numbers at appropriate levels of accuracy
  • Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
  • Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
  • Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
  • Safety-Consciousness - Having an awareness of your immediate environment, and confidence in adhering to health and safety regulations
  • Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.
  • Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team

Subject specific skills

  • Conduct fieldwork and/or laboratory work competently with awareness of appropriate risk assessment and ethical considerations
  • Recognize and apply appropriate theories and concepts from a range of disciplines.
  • Consider issues from a range of interdisciplinary perspectives.
  • Apply subject knowledge to the understanding and addressing of problems.
  • Collect, analyse and interpret primary and/or secondary data using appropriate qualitative and/or quantitative techniques.
  • Awareness of the concepts of spatial and temporal scale in understanding processes and relationships.
  • Apply appropriate techniques for presenting spatial and/or temporal trends in data.
  • Preparation of effective maps, diagrams and visualizations.
  • Understand the provisional nature of information and appreciate competing and alternative explanations.
  • Collect and record data generated by a diverse range of methods.
  • Demonstrate awareness of the importance of risk assessment and relevant legislation
  • Demonstrate awareness of the importance of risk assessment and relevant legislation

Courses including this module