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I. Reading and Web Assignments

II. Lectures and Programs

III. Journal Assignments

IV. Species Assignments



I. Reading and Web Assignments:
- to be completed before departure, questions will be sent to you

  1. Australia - General Information

  2. Australian Culture

  3. Australian Rainforest

  4. Great Barrier Reef

  5. Tropical Savannahs

II. *Lectures and Programs:
- to be attended throughout your travels, reading handouts will be given to you

  • Mechanisms of Evolution
  • Biodiversity and Speciation
  • Biogeography of Australia
  • Coral Reef Ecology
  • Rainforest Ecology
  • Savanna Ecology
  • Importance of Biodiversity and Threats
* Students in Biology 497 will select a topic of interest and lead a 30-45 minute discussion.

III. Journal Assignments
- to be completed throughout your travels and upon your return to the mainland
Atherton Tablelands You will be given a trip notebook to keep notes on your trip. For example, you should keep a daily journal of things you did, things you saw and things you learned. You might also want to keep track of the people you met. Anything you wish to remember, such as your first impressions, your surprises, etc. Undara

After your trip you will be asked to write a short summary for each day of your trip. Your summaries will be incorporated into student learning activities for students in Drs. McLaughlin's and Zervano's first year seminar course entitled Biodiversity on Line. You will also be asked to answer the following questions:

  1. What impressed you most about Australia?
  2. What were your best and worst experiences?
  3. Any surprises or disappointments?
  4. What did you learn about biodiversity?
  5. What problems did you uncover? Are there solutions?

Kangaroo IV. Species Assignments
- to be completed throughout your travels and upon your return to the mainland

Students taking the Biology 297 credits are required to identify one Australian plant or animal species that they heard about before or during their trip. Students taking the Biology 497 credits are required to identify two Australian plant or animal species.

In order to eliminate replication, you need to tell Dr. McLaughlin which species you have chosen as soon as possible during the trip. Then, try to find out as much as possible about your selected species by asking questions, using available field guides, etc. Upon your return you may wish to do more research. The following questions should be answered:

  1. What is the range and habitat of the species?
  2. What is its evolutionary history? (Origin, relatives etc.)
  3. What role does it play in its environment (niche)?
  4. Any unique adaptations?
  5. What are the threats to its survival?
If at all possible, you will need a photo of your selected organisms.

This page was last updated on May 31, 2001.