Students are expected to: (i) understand the structure and function of marine ecosystems, and the anthropogenic activities in the marine environment; (ii) become competent in identifying key groups of marine organisms, the most typical of them to species level; (iii) develop the reasoning for establishing a research on the marine environment; (iv) get acquainted (if possible) with the use sampling tools; (v) raise their awareness about marine life through the knowledge of diversity, organization and threats of the marine world.
Course Content (Syllabus)
Subject and history of Marine Biology. Methods of marine research. Characteristics of the marine ecosystem and comparison with the terrestrial ecosystem. Marine organisms (plants, invertebrates, fishes, reptiles, birds, mammals). Rocky shore and soft-bottom intertidal communities. Estuarine ecosystem. Sublittoral communities. Major tropical ecosystems (coral reefs, mangrove forests). Life in the epipelagic zone. Life in great depths (mesopelagic, bathypelagic zone, benthos in the deep sea, deep-sea hot springs). Evolution of life in the sea. Resources from the sea. Human impact on the marine environment (pollution, conservation). Characteristics of the Mediterranean ecosystem.