Full Title:Environmental Monitoring and Modelling
Language of Instruction:English
Module Code:ENVR S8015
Credits: 5
Valid From:Semester 1 - 2014/15 ( September 2014 )
Module Delivered in 1 programme(s)
Module Description:In this module, students will participate in a combination of interactive practical classes, and lectures from both staff and guest lectures on monitoring approaches that are relevant for the environmental management and the implementation of the EU Directives and other relevant legislation. Techniques will include the use of biological indices, chemical analyses, and high frequency in-situ measurements. They will also acquire knowledge and skills in the use of these monitoring data to simulate lake and catchment processes using dynamic computer models.
Learning Outcomes:
On successful completion of this module the learner should be able to
  1. Evaluate case studies on the development and application of monitoring methods for different scientific and legislative objectives.
  2. Display expertise in techniques that are routinely used to monitor and assess ecosystem function.
  3. Evaluate the strengths and limitations of different types of catchment and lake models.

Module Content & Assessment

Indicative Content
Collecting and interpreting data
Ecological relevance of data; natural variation and seasonality; analysis and interpretation of biological, chemical and physical data; handing large data sets including dealing with missing data; open source and other national data sets (e.g. meteorological data, flow data; census data)
Analytical methods in environmental monitoring
Laboratory based instrumentation including principles and standard operating procedures; collection of field data; selection of appropriate methods in the laboratory and field.
Biological tools for environmental monitoring
The role of taxonomic tools; choosing the correct biological monitoring tool for a site; general sampling methods and protocols; bioindicator organisms and their associated indices.
Autonomous in-situ monitoring
Applications and commonly used instruments sensors for environmental monitoring; general issues with instrument maintenance e.g. bio-fouling and calibration; data logging and archiving; selected case studies.
Environmental models
Conceptual models of ecosystem processes;principles of model building using both empirical and mechanistic modelling approaches; commonly used models in catchment and freshwater systems. Air pollution dispersion models (e.g. Screen 3).
Practicals in ecosystem modelling
Hand-on modelling practicals of nutrient loading using GWLF in Vensim PLE; simulations of lake water column changes using data collected with TibBit sensors and the open source GLM model. Use of air dispersion model.
Practicals in biological and environmental monitoring
Laboratory and field based training in use of biological indices and monitoring techniques.
Assessment Breakdown%
Course Work50.00%
End of Module Formal Examination50.00%

Full Time

Course Work
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Marks Out Of Pass Marks Assessment Date Duration
Project Students will complete a desk study on an assigned biological tool, metric or model. 3 15.00 0 0 Sem 2 End 0
Continuous Assessment Weekly reports on monitoring and modelling exercises. 2,3 35.00 0 0 Every Week 0
No Project
No Practical
End of Module Formal Examination
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Marks Out Of Pass Marks Assessment Date Duration
Formal Exam n/a 1,2,3 50.00 0 0 End-of-Semester 120

DKIT reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Module Workload & Resources

Workload: Full Time
Workload Type Workload Description Hours Frequency Average Weekly Learner Workload
Lecture No Description 2.00 Every Week 2.00
Practical No Description 2.00 Every Week 2.00
Independent Study No Description 3.00 Every Week 3.00
Total Weekly Learner Workload 7.00
Total Weekly Contact Hours 4.00
This course has no Part Time workload.
Recommended Book Resources
  • Conklin, A.R 2004, Field Sampling Principles and Practices in Environmental Analysis, CRC Press [ISBN: 978082475471]
  • Chunlong Zhang 2007, Fundamentals of Environmental Sampling and Analysis, Wiley [ISBN: 978-0-471-710]
  • Soetaert, Karline, Herman, Peter M.J. 2009, A Practical Guide to Ecological Modelling using R as a simulation platform, Springer New York [ISBN: 9781402086243]
Supplementary Book Resources
  • Haith, D. A., Mandel, R., and Wu, R. S. 1992, GWLF: Generalized watershed loading functions (User’s Manual, version 2.0), Cornell University Ithaca, NY
This module does not have any article/paper resources
Other Resources

Module Delivered in

Programme Code Programme Semester Delivery
DK_SENVI_8 Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Environmental Bioscience 8 Mandatory