Module DDL-4205:
Inv., Assessment & Monitoring

Module Facts

Run by School of Natural Sciences

20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits

Organiser: Dr Ruben Valbuena

Overall aims and purpose

  1. The purpose of the module is to consider ways in which forest resources can be assessed and recorded, enabling growth and development to be scientifically monitored. The module will provide students with the opportunity to acquire knowledge and understanding of the specialist areas of mensuration, forest inventory and forest resource assessment and monitoring, the latter to include an introduction to the use of remote technologies.

  2. The module will provide students with the opportunity to acquire knowledge and understanding of specialist areas of forestry, and to develop their independent learning and written communication skills.

  3. The module will enable distance learning students to work with each other, through a summative group assessment. This is a direct result of student feedback and comments and is directly aimed at encouraging student-student interaction which can be limited in a distance learning course.

Course content

Forest mensuration: terminology and units; measurement of single trees, forest stands and forest products; assessment of current/potential yield. Forest inventory planning. Sampling techniques: types and application with respect to forest trees, forest-dwelling organisms and forest products; the effects of variation on sampling systems. Forest inventory and statistics, forest resource monitoring, recurrent forest inventory and their roles in forest and forest products certification. Introduction to remote technologies.

This module will be taught by distance-learning in the format common to all distance-learning modules in SENRGy.

Course material will be supplied as a series of course booklets, plus text book(s). In addition to the course material, there will be a guided reading handbook which contains supplementary course material, self-assessment, a timetable for carrying out the work and details of assessments. Non-assessed pieces of work will be submitted during the three months over which the module runs, and comments on these will be returned to students. This non-assessed work is used to monitor student progress and provide feedback. A more substantial piece of assessment will be submitted at the end of the module and marked. Students will sit an examination at the end of the module. Students will be able to contact the module organiser by phone or email to seek guidance. There will also be a web-based information resource that students can use to find information or request information, and which will include a student mutual help facility.

Assessment Criteria

threshold

Grades C- to C+: Limited understanding of forest measurement, inventory and monitoring techniques. Limited ability to use techniques for calculating / estimating forest parameters e.g. height, basal area, stocking density, level of error in sampling. Limited contribution to group project, as evidenced by number and quality of blackboard posts and self-reflection. Limited evidence of wider reading.

good

Grades B- to B+: Good understanding of forest measurement, inventory and monitoring techniques. Clear ability to use techniques for calculating / estimating forest parameters e.g. height, basal area, stocking density, level of error in sampling. Adequate contribution to group project, as evidenced by number and quality of blackboard posts and self-reflection. Clear evidence of wider reading.

excellent

Grades A- to A**: Excellent understanding of forest measurement, inventory and monitoring techniques. Advanced ability to use techniques for calculating / estimating forest parameters e.g. height, basal area, stocking density, level of error in sampling. Excellent contribution to group project, as evidenced by number and quality of blackboard posts and self-reflection. Extensive evidence of wider reading and understanding.

Learning outcomes

  1. Appreciate the fundamental importance of assessment, inventory and monitoring with respect to forest resource management.

  2. Understand techniques, terminology and conventions used in forest mensuration and how these are applied in modern forest management.

  3. Be able to use these techniques to perform a range of calculations relating to forest resources.

  4. Understand how to plan a forest inventory.

  5. Understand and be able to apply the sampling systems commonly used in forest inventory.

  6. Appreciate how variation in the forest resource impacts on the process of forest inventory.

  7. Learn how to organise and manage remote group work on a highly relevant and important aspect of forest inventory. Appreciate the range of communication technologies available for such exercises. Understand the importance of reflecting on such experiences in order to improve the efficiency and quality of future of group projects.

  8. Appreciate the importance of monitoring forest resources.

  9. Understand how the state of a forest resource may be reliably monitored over time to meet a range of objectives.

Assessment Methods

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Hours
 

Online lectures / field videos

8
 

Online discussion forums

10
 

Group inventory activity

40
Private study 142

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.
  • 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
  • Mentoring - Able to support, help, guide, inspire and/or coach others
  • Management - Able to utilise, coordinate and control resources (human, physical and/or financial)
  • Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others
  • Leadership - Able to lead and manage, develop action plans and objectives, offer guidance and direction to others, and cope with the related pressures such authority can result in

Subject specific skills

  • 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

Resources

Courses including this module

Optional in courses: