BIOEE 1610 Week 1

  1. List the ecological hierarchy of scales
    • Individual
    • Population
    • Community
    • Ecosystem
    • Biosphere
  2. What is an individual?
    A single organism.
  3. What is a population?
    A group of individuals belonging to the same species.
  4. What is a community?
    Interacting populations of different species.
  5. What is an ecosystem?
    A community and its abiotic environment.
  6. What is the biosphere?
    All life on earth and its support systems.
  7. What is Ecology?
    • Ecology is the scientific study of the processes influencing:
    • The distribution and abundance of organisms.
    • The interactions between organisms
    • The transformations and fluxes of energy and matter.
  8. Are ecology and environmentalism the same thing?
    Although there’s an intersection and most ecologists tend to be environmentalists, they’re not the same thing. Ecology is a field of biological science, whereas environmentalism is the concern and political action for the sake of the environment.
  9. What are the major tools used by ecologists?
    Experiments, models and observations
  10. What are observational studies? What are their pros and cons?
    • These are studies conducted in the field. They measure existing patterns of variation.
    • Pros: realistic, all ecological relations are present. Good starting point to identify correlations.
    • Cons: Hard to identify a direct cause-result effect. May intervene in or harm ecosystems.
  11. What are experimental studies? What are their pros and cons?
    • These are studies done in a controlled setting (could be field or lab). Variables of interest are manipulated to compare response and control.
    • Pros: Isolates cause and effect
    • Cons: Not all abiotic and biotic relations present, which may deem experiment unrealistic. More subject to confirmation bias.
  12. What do we need for a good experimental study?
    • Matched pair
    • Control groups
    • Repeated measures
  13. What is the general structure of an ecological study?
    • Ecological observation
    • Posing a question
    • Hypothesis generation
    • Predictions based on hypothesis
    • Experiment, observation or modeling
    • Results
    • Further experimentation or changing hypothesis
  14. What is the requirement for a study to be deemed an ecological study?
    Must involve the study of individuals and their environments.
  15. How do we compare experimental and observational studies? Is one better than the other?
    No. They both have trade-offs.
Card Set
BIOEE 1610 Week 1