Biodiversity Seminar 3

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Lake Victoria

This document serves as a teaching guide for the third of three seminars in a unit on biodiversity. This seminar focuses on invasive species in order to underscore the difficulties of managing and restoring ecosystems and the potential damage of intended or unintended manipulation. As explained in the corresponding lecture, biodiversity theory can explain the causes and consequences of biodiversity loss and provides recommendations for mediating the sixth global extinction event and thus ensuring the availability of ecosystem services, the health of the biosphere, and the quality of human life. The guide includes an overview, reading list, and step-by-step seminar plan, including suggested discussion questions, activities, and reference to assignments. Related seminar activities and assignment questions are provided in accompanying files.

Biodiversity Seminar 1b

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Depletion of fish stocks.

This teaching guide provides ideas for an alternative or additional seminar to include in a unit on biodiversity. The topics included in this guide are related to species decline in aquatic ecosystems. The guide contains an overview of the seminar, a reading list, and a step-by-step seminar plan, including suggested discussion questions, activities, and references to associated assignments. The related assignment questions are provided in an accompanying file.

Invasive Species and Population Dynamics

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Time series plot of balsam fir growth and moose population in Isle Royal National Park 1959–2003.

In this assignment, students will consider the effects of invasive species on ecosystems, and look at population dynamics in predator-prey relationships. In examining data from previous studies, students will apply their understanding of graphical displays of data and of statistical concepts (mean, standard deviation, variance, correlation, significance) to interpret research findings. This document serves as a student handout; an answer key is provided in an accompanying document.

Invasive Species and Population Dynamics

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Time series plot of wolf and moose populations in Isle Royal National Park 1959–2003.

In this assignment, students will consider the effects of invasive species on ecosystems and look at population dynamics in predator-prey relationships. In examining data from previous studies, students will apply their understanding of graphical displays of data and of statistical concepts (mean, standard deviation, variance, correlation, significance) to interpret research findings. This document serves as an answer key; a student handout is provided in an accompanying document.

Wombats and Bees

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Butterfly, bird, and plant declines.

This assignment requires students to consider data related to diversity in local animal populations. Students will apply their understanding of samples, populations, and statistics to data from several different published studies of biodiversity. This document serves as a student handout; an answer key is provided in an accompanying document.

Wombats and Bees

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Fruit-set effect sizes of pollen-supplementation experiments, North America.

This assignment requires students to consider data related to diversity in local animal populations. Students will apply their understanding of samples, populations, and statistics to data from several different published studies of biodiversity. This document serves as an answer key; a student handout is provided in an accompanying document.

Biodiversity of Pollinators

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Median pollen deposition per visit.

In this class activity, students will analyze data from an investigation of the relationship between bee diversity and pollen deposition in farms and natural areas. Students will learn about the effects of biodiversity in a given ecosystem, and will apply their understanding of statistical concepts (mean, median, standard error). This document includes student handouts; an instructor guide is provided in an accompanying document.

Biodiversity of Pollinators

Discipline:

Cumulative estimated mean pollen deposition.

In this class activity, students will analyze data from an investigation of the relationship between bee diversity and pollen deposition in farms and natural areas. Students will learn about the effects of biodiversity in a given ecosystem, and will apply their understanding of statistical concepts (mean, median, standard error). This document serves as an instructor guide; student handouts are provided in accompanying documents.

Detecting Extrasolar Planets

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The electromagnetic spectrum.

In these two multipart questions, students will apply their understanding of methods for detecting planets, along with their understanding of control groups, correlation, and standard error in measurement.

Detecting Extrasolar Planets

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Percentage chance of a star having planets vs the metal content of the star.

In these two multipart questions, students will apply their understanding of methods for detecting planets, along with their understanding of control groups, correlation, and standard error in measurement.