Course Title: Field Experience Practicum

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Field Experience Practicum

Credit Points: 12.00

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


Bundoora Campus


135H Applied Sciences


Sem 2 2007,
Sem 2 2009,
Sem 2 2012,
Sem 2 2013,
Sem 2 2014,
Sem 2 2015,
Sem 2 2016


Bundoora Campus


135H Applied Sciences


Sem 2 2015,
Sem 2 2016

Course Coordinator: Dr. Jeff Shimeta

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 7151

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: Bundoora campus 223.1.35

Course Coordinator Availability: By email appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

 Assumed knowledge and capabilities from ONPS2334 Scientific Skills & Communication. Additionally beneficial courses include BIOL2151 Animal Diversity; ENVI1009 The Ecosphere; BIOL2255 Marine Biology. The field experience requires strenuous physical activities. You must be in good health to meet the minimum occupational health and safety criteria required.

Course Description

 The course is a study tour to tropical Australia, typically including the Great Barrier Reef and Daintree Rainforest. The academic focus is an introduction to tropical coral reef ecology through field activities and related studies. Daily activities require hiking, boating, swimming and/or snorkelling, and lectures/discussions. You learn to identify coral reef fauna and flora. You are exposed to coral reef research at a leading research field station. The group also engages in all the routine activities of cooking and cleaning while at the field station. You are expected to pay costs of travel, food, accommodation, and gear hire on this study tour as a course material fee (codes M836_A and M836_B). You must arrange and pay on your own for return travel to Cairns and several days of food in Cairns. This course cannot be used to satisfy the requirements of ONPS2186 Science Project.



Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development


This course is not a core component of any degree programs.


 On completion of this course you should be able to:

 1. Identify and observe the behaviour of numerous coral reef species.

2. Explain the relations between ecological processes and environmental factors on coral reefs.

3. Conduct a field survey of a coral reef, including data collection, analysis, and interpretation.

4. Write a detailed scientific report of a field study following professional standards.


Overview of Learning Activities

Attendance on the extended field excursion and participation in all excursion activities, including snorkelling, lectures and discussions, journal writing, and other group activities. Preparatory assignment before the excursion, and follow-up assignment afterwards.

Total Study Hours

The field excursion lasts approximately 11 days. A minimum of 4 hours per week of independent study is recommended for completing the assessments.



Overview of Learning Resources

Resources will be provided and/or hired as required,  including transportation, accommodation, food, boats, wetsuits, and snorkelling gear. The course web site provides an itinerary and travel information, lecture notes, handouts and other resources for assignments.


Overview of Assessment

 Note that:

☐This course has no hurdle requirements.

☒ All hurdle requirements for this course are indicated clearly in the assessment regime that follows, against the relevant assessment task(s) and all have been approved by the College Deputy Pro Vice-Chancellor (Learning & Teaching).

 The hurdle is attendance on the study tour and completion of all activities during the tour. Learning from the study tour is assessed in items 2 and 3 below.

 1. Pre-trip assignment 10% (supports CLOs 1 & 2).

2. Field journal 30% (supports CLOs 1 & 2).

3. Reef survey report 60% (supports CLOs 1, 2, 3, & 4).