Run by School of Natural Sciences
20.000 Credits or 10.000 ECTS Credits
Organiser: Dr Charles Bishop
Overall aims and purpose
To provide an introduction to the origins of the vertebrate classes, to briefly outline the steps in their evolutionary history and to understand the functional aspects of their major morphological characteristics and life history features. Thus, the module will focus on the structure and function of vertebrates, seen from an evolutionary perspective and illustrate the taxonomic diversity within the vertebrate groups. It will start by defining the essential features of the Chordates, from which the Vertebrates evolved. It will briefly cover the basic feeding, respiratory and locomotory adaptations of the fish before moving on to discuss the evolution of land vertebrates via the lobe-fined fishes and early amphibians. It will cover the evolutionary diversity of the amphibians and contrasting water relations of amphibians and reptiles. Finally, it will cover the evolutionary history of birds and mammals and their primary locomotory and sensory adaptations.
This module traces the origins of vertebrates through a series of around 20 lectures (mostly face-to-face but with additional online video resources) and follows the subsequent major advances in the evolution of aquatic, terrestrial and aerial groups. Themes given particular emphasis include: evolution, diversity, feeding, respiration (aquatic and aerial), and locomotion (aquatic, terrestrial and flight). This module should be of general interest to all animal biologists but with an emphasis on terrestrial groups.
The module will also include a mixture of lab-based and museum/online-based practical classes (generally focussing on locomotor, respiratory and reproductive adaptations), two covering fish diversity in form and function, a chicken dissection (with additional focus on digestive adaptations and related internal organs) and two museum-based practicals covering amphibian/reptile and mammal diversity and core adaptations.
Assessment will be via a series of Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ) tests and end of semester short answer or short essay exam questions.
A threshold student should have a basic knowledge of some of the essential facts and key concepts of the evolutionary history, anatomical structure and diversity of vertebrates presented in the module. Written answers should demonstrate some ability to organise relevant material into a coherent argument but is likely to lack specific examples, detailed explanations and good subject coverage.
C- to C+
A C class student should have a reasonable factual knowledge across many aspects of the module, and be able to provide some detailed examples where appropriate. Written answers should try and synthesise key aspects of the lecture material and enclosed information, and demonstrate an attempt to integrate and evaluate the principles underlying the structural evolution and function of vertebrates.
A good student should have a thorough factual knowledge across most aspects of the module, and be able to detail examples where appropriate. Written answers should synthesise lecture material and information from background reading, and demonstrate an ability to critically integrate and evaluate the principles underlying the structural evolution and function of vertebrates. This would include their diversity, and how functions such as feeding, locomotion and reproduction are vital to their survival.
The student should demonstrate excellent and comprehensive factual knowledge, critical understanding of theory, evidence of extra reading of primary literature and the ability to integrate this extra knowledge in a relevant manner, adequate for HE level 2.
Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of different facts and mechanisms of vertebrate biology (Biosciences benchmarks: 3.2 subject knowledge & 3.5 intellectual skills)
Demonstrate a conceptual understanding of processes of evolution, phylogeny, physiology and biomechanics of vertebrates. (Biosciences benchmarks: 3.2 subject knowledge & 3.5 intellectual skills)
Demonstrate a conceptual understanding of the interaction of vertebrates with their environment. (Biosciences benchmarks: 3.2 subject knowledge & 3.5 intellectual skills)
Develop an appreciation of internal anatomy, including organ structure and vascularisation. (Biosciences benchmark: 3.5 intellectual skills & 3.9 Self-management and professional development skills)
|CLASS TEST||Mammal Biology test||20.00|
|CLASS TEST||Vertebrate Biology exam||20.00|
|CLASS TEST||Reptile & Amphibian Biology test||20.00|
|CLASS TEST||Chordates, early vertebrates and fish Biology test||20.00|
|EXAM||Bird Biology test||20.00|
Teaching and Learning Strategy
The 20 lectures will be arranged into blocks of 3 to 5, covering each of the five vertebrate classes, and scheduled as 2 or 3 per week. These may be face-to-face or provided online, or both. Students may occasionally be prompted to answer questions and invited to make comments on relevant aspects of the biology. The lectures will also relate to the dissection and museum diversity practicals.
Formative feedback. At the end of each block of lectures, there will be a review of the information provided on the biology of the vertebrate classes and an indication of the kind questions that might arise in the exam, including both MCQ and short answers. This will either be incorporated into the lectures or provided as online material.
Students will be expected to take the time to review their lecture and practical notes and conduct extra reading to enhance their understanding of the main topics and to take the opportunity to develop their specialist interests.
|Practical classes and workshops||
Four practicals introduce the students to morphology, physiology, and phylogenetics of vertebrates. In most practicals students will work on their own. Their will be 2 practical covering animal diversity (herpetology and mammals, based on the museum collection). The information is complimentary with that provided by the lectures and knowledge of all material and concepts will be assessed via on-line tests at the end of each lecture block at at the end of semester exam. Their will be a practical conducting a chicken dissection (looking at locomotor, reproductive and digestive adaptations) and a practical covering fish diversity of form and function.
- Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
- Numeracy - Proficiency in using numbers at appropriate levels of accuracy
- 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
- 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
Subject specific skills
- Recognize and apply appropriate theories and concepts from a range of disciplines.
- Apply subject knowledge to the understanding and addressing of problems.
- Appreciation of the complexity and diversity of life processes through the study of organisms.
- Undertake field and/or laboratory studies of living systems.
Resource implications for students
Talis Reading listhttp://readinglists.bangor.ac.uk/modules/bsx-2022.html
Pre- and Co-requisite Modules
Courses including this module
Compulsory in courses:
- CC13: BSC Marine Biology/Zoology year 2 (BSC/BMZ)
- 8B76: BSc Marine Biology and Zoology (with International Exp) year 2 (BSC/BMZIE)
- CC1P: BSc Marine Biology with Zoology with Placement Year year 2 (BSC/BMZP)
- C300: BSC Zoology year 2 (BSC/Z)
- C30F: BSc Zoology year 2 (BSC/ZF)
- C324: BSc Zoology with International Experience year 3 (BSC/ZIE)
- C169: MSci Marine Biology and Zoology year 2 (MSCI/MBZ)
- C306: MZool Zoology (with International Experience) year 3 (MZOOL/ZOIE)
- C301: MZool Master of Zoology year 2 (MZOOL/ZOO)
Optional in courses:
- C183: BSC Appl.Terrestrial & Marine Ec 4 year 2 (BSC/APTME)
- C180: BSc Appl. Terrestrial &Marine Ec year 2 (BSC/ATME)
- C184: BSc App Terrestrial & Marine Ecology with Intl Experience year 2 (BSC/ATMEIE)
- C100: BSC Biology year 2 (BSC/B)
- C10F: BSc Biology year 2 (BSC/BF)
- C511: BSc Biology with Biotechnology year 2 (BSC/BIOT)
- C102: BSc Biology (with International Experience) year 3 (BSC/BITE)
- D447: BSC Environmental Conservation year 2 (BSC/ECON)
- D448: BSC Environmental Conservation year 2 (BSC/ECON4)
- D451: BSc Environmental Conservation (International Experience) year 2 (BSC/ENIE)
- C351: BSC Marine Vertebrate Zoology year 2 (BSC/MVZ)
- 2F11: BSc Marine Vertebrate Zoology (with International Experience year 2 (BSC/MVZIE)
- C328: BSc Wildlife Conservation year 2 (BSC/WLC)
- C332: BSc Wildlife Conservation with Place Yr year 2 (BSC/WLCP)
- C305: BSc Zoology with Animal Behaviour (with International Exp) year 3 (BSC/ZABIE)
- C3L2: BSC Zoology with Conservation year 2 (BSC/ZC)
- C319: BSc Zoology with Climate Change Studies year 2 (BSC/ZCC)
- C327: BSc Zoology with Climate Change Studies w International Exp year 2 (BSC/ZCCIE)
- C3L3: BSc Zoology with Conservation with International Experience year 3 (BSC/ZCIE)
- C3L4: BSc Zoology with Conservation with Placement Year year 2 (BSC/ZCP)
- C304: BSC Zoology with Herpetology year 2 (BSC/ZH)
- C307: BSc Zoology with Herpetology (with International Experience) year 2 (BSC/ZHIE)
- C3C1: BSc Zoology with Marine Zoology (with International Exp) year 3 (BSC/ZMB)
- C350: BSC Zoology with Marine Zoology year 2 (BSC/ZMZ)
- C329: BSc Zoology with Primatology year 2 (BSC/ZP)
- C32P: Zoology with Primatology with Placement Year year 2 (BSC/ZPP)
- C330: BSc Zoology with Ornithology year 2 (BSC/ZR)
- C3D3: BSC Zoology with Animal Behaviour year 2 (BSC/ZWAB)
- C3DP: BSc Zoology with Animal Behaviour with Placement Year year 2 (BSC/ZWABP)
- C101: MBiol Master of Biology year 2 (MBIOL/BIO)
- C510: MBiol Biology with Biotechnology year 2 (MBIOL/BIOT)
- C168: MSci Marine Vertebrate Zoology year 2 (MSCI/MVZ)
- C302: MZool Zoology with Animal Behaviour year 2 (MZOOL/AB)
- C30P: MZool Zoology with Animal Behaviour with Placement Year year 2 (MZOOL/ABP)
- CD34: MZool Zoology with Conservation year 2 (MZOOL/CONS)
- CD3P: MZool Zoology with Conservation with Placement Year year 2 (MZOOL/CONSP)
- C303: MZool Zoology with Herpetology year 2 (MZOOL/HERP)
- C325: MZool Zoology with Animal Behaviour with International Exp year 3 (MZOOL/ZAIE)
- C321: MZool Zoology with Climate Change year 2 (MZOOL/ZCC)
- C326: MZool Zoology with Herpetology with International Experience year 3 (MZOOL/ZHIE)
- C353: MZool Zoology with Marine Zoology year 2 (MZOOL/ZMZ)
- C37P: MZool Zoology with Marine Zoology with Placement Year year 2 (MZOOL/ZMZP)
- C333: MZool Zoology with Primatology year 2 (MZOOL/ZP)
- C334: MZool Zoology with Ornithology year 2 (MZOOL/ZR)