Module DDL-4202:
Silviculture

Module Facts

Run by School of Natural Sciences

20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits

Organiser: Dr Mark Rayment

Overall aims and purpose

This module develops an understanding of the principles and practice of silviculture, the place of silviculture in the sustainable cultivation of trees, and the role that silviculture plays in delivering ecosystem services from trees, woodlands and forests.

Course content

We explore the unique characteristics of forest soils and of soil physical, chemical and biological properties, how these influence site productivity and how these are influenced by land management.

The module is in seven units and runs over 14 weeks of the academic year. The module begins with a brief review of the history of silviculture and its role in the sustainable management of tree, woodland and forest resources. We will look at some of the basic botany of tree growth, and consider the role that genetics plays in shaping species’ silvicultural characteristics and responses to silvicultural interventions. Productivity is to a large extent driven by environmental conditions, particularly the edaphic (soil) environment, and we will look at how these site conditions influence the choice of species to plant. Two units will focus on silvicultural practices from regeneration through to harvesting (or should that be from harvesting through to regeneration?) considering a range of examples from temperate and tropic regions. We will look at a range of silvicultural systems, historic, current and future, again considering how the choice of system is influenced by the local environmental context as well as by management objectives. In the final unit, we will consider ways in which we might use all the above knowledge to transform woodlands or forests, bringing them into productive management, or restoring them to a desired state.

Assessment Criteria

good

• show a thorough understanding of the variation in silvicultural characteristics among and within species and the physical, chemical and biological properties of soils and be able to evaluate the importance of these when matching species to site.
• be able to describe in detail the silvicultural practices used in trees, woodlands and forests, and be able to explain and evaluate their use in achieving management objectives in specific situations now and in the future. • be able to describe a variety of silvicultural systems, give examples of their use, explain their application in current situations and suggest how they might be used in future scenarios.
• be able to identify detailed and workable silvicultural actions for achieving set management objectives and delivering specific ecosystem services, now and in the future.

excellent

• show a comprehensive understanding of the variation in silvicultural characteristics among and within species and the physical, chemical and biological properties of soils and be able to critically evaluate the importance of these when matching species to site. • be able to describe in detail the silvicultural practices used in trees, woodlands and forests, and be able to explain and evaluate their use in achieving management objectives in a variety of situations now and in the future. • be able to describe in detail a variety of silvicultural systems, give examples of their use, critically discuss their application in current situations and suggest how they might be used in future scenarios. • be able to identify detailed and workable silvicultural actions for achieving a balanced set of management objectives and delivering multiple ecosystem services, now and in the future.

threshold

• show a basic understanding of the variation in silvicultural characteristics among and within species and the physical, chemical and biological properties of soils and explain why these are important when matching species to site.
• be able to describe the silvicultural practices used in trees, woodlands and forests, and to explain why and where they are used currently. • be able to describe a variety of silvicultural systems and explain why and where they are used currently.
• be able to identify basic silvicultural actions for achieving a set management objective and delivering a specific ecosystem service.

Learning outcomes

  1. Show a critical understanding of among and within-species variation in silvicultural characteristics, the physical, chemical and biological properties of soils, and the relevance of these to the process of matching species to site.

  2. Discuss in detail a variety silvicultural practices and evaluate their suitability and effectiveness in managing trees, woodlands and forests for different objectives.

  3. Discuss the concept of silvicultural systems, and evaluate the use and relative merits of a variety of silvicultural systems.

  4. Identify specific silvicultural actions for achieving management objectives and delivering ecosystem services from specific tree, woodland or forest situations now and in the future.

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
Silviculture in a changing world 40
Online exam 1 10
Online exam 2 20
Online exam 3 30

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Hours
Private study 152
Seminar 16
Lecture 16
Study group 16

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
  • Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
  • 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.
  • 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
  • Argument - Able to put forward, debate and justify an opinion or a course of action, with an individual or in a wider group setting

Subject specific skills

  • Develop and identify research question(s) and/or hypotheses as the basis for investigation.
  • 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.
  • Understand the provisional nature of information and appreciate competing and alternative explanations.
  • Collect and record data generated by a diverse range of methods.

Resources

Resource implications for students

None

Talis Reading list

http://readinglists.bangor.ac.uk/modules/ddl-4202.html

Reading list

Reading lists for each unit are contained in the unit handbooks

Courses including this module