ZOOL40280 Biological Invasions

Academic Year 2023/2024

This module provides a foundation in the theory of invasion ecology and focuses on how invasive alien species are introduced and spread and the key characteristics of invasive plants and animals and their environmental and economic impacts. The content focuses on the global threat of invasive species and the issues around managing the risk in a sustainable way. Concepts and issues explored include patterns of introduction, ecological disturbance and succession, herbivory/predation and role of competition, risk assessment, practical management, biological control, cost and benefits of control in a global context. The content is illustrated with case studies from terrestrial, freshwater and marine habitats and practicals provide material and examples to illustrate the concepts covered.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

The student should appreciate the wide diversity of invasive species and the role of different sectors in invasions, recognize the characteristics of invasive species and invaded habitats and the challenges of reducing the threats, understand the role of evidence based research in managing ecological threats, indicate the factors responsible for invasions, source and review the ecological impacts and mitigating factors, evaluate and critically appraise methods of control to achieve sustainability. Work to source and appraise information on case studies to address a key concept presented.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours


Small Group




Autonomous Student Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
Active/task-based learning; peer and group work; lectures; critical writing; tutorials with problem-based learning. 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations
Learning Requirements:

General Ecology based course

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade In Module Component Repeat Offered
Continuous Assessment: Mini review and Information brochure Week 12 n/a Graded No


Continuous Assessment: Attendance and tutorial participation Week 11 n/a Graded No


Continuous Assessment: Interactive assignments during practical Week 10 n/a Graded No


Continuous Assessment: Attendance and tutorial participation Week 9 n/a Graded No



Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Summer No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Group/class feedback, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Group feedback will be provided on assignments

Name Role
Dr Tancredi Caruso Lecturer / Co-Lecturer