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Ecology Training Plant Ecology and Science

Course fee £165.00

Nature Reserve Wym May 2023

The underpinning factor of ecological knowledge and understanding is the awareness of the importance of plants. Without green plants whether an oak tree or oceanic plankton and photosynthesis, there would be no oxygen and thus, no animals including ourselves.

This ecology training course will provide an introduction to plant science which in itself is a whole area of study of its own. The course will provide background knowledge and understanding of how plants work, the importance of solar radiation (sunlight) and soils. The science content is not advanced but tailored to match the level of study needed by a successful ecologist.

Ecology training 2 - Plant Science has three units, is set at the equivalent to UK study level 3 and has an assignment for each unit. The achievement levels are pass, merit and distinction.


The first unit provides an introduction to plant anatomy  (organs, cells and tissues) and physiology (biochemical process). You will also learn how to explain plant structures to their functions. In other words. you will study plants as organisms, living things that reproduce, grow, respire, excrete, move, have sensitivity and require nutrition.

The second unit is all about light from the wavelengths that match the anatomy and physiology of plant photosynthesis. How effective is photosynthesis under different conditions? How do leaves maximise their ability to photosynthsise effectively? What are the limiting factors for maximum photosynthesis.

The third unit looks at soils, the medium in which most plants grow. Topics covered include soil structure, types, levels (horizons), origins, composition, ability to retain water and ability to allow effective root growth.

Unit 1 Plant Science - Plants as Organisms

Describe and explain plant form and function. Ideal of content: plant structure; structures to function; autotrophs; leaf structure and composition; plant tissues and cells; aerial and root parts; stem structure and function; leaf structure and function; leaf forms; adaptations for photosynthesis: e.g. stomata, chloroplasts, chlorophyll; transport methods; diffusion, active transport; introductory chemistry and physics of water movement; sunlight and photosynthesis; sunken stomata.

autumn leaves
stomata 400x
Common Blue butterfly on plant
x100 Orcein stain nuclei, cell walls

Unit 2 Plant Science - Plants and Light

Identify, explain and assess the effect of light on plant success. Idea of content: plants as primary producers in food chains and webs; autotrophs; flow of energy from Sun along a food chain; inorganic carbon to organic carbon; chlorophyll, green pigment; solar energy, wavelength, electromagnetic spectrum, insolation, visible light; PAR; EMS; PPFD; Insolation; light capture for photosynthesis; the photon; light energy to chemical energy.

Flow of energy photosynthesis

Unit 3 Plant Science - The Soil

Investigate, explain and identify the nature and structure of soils. Idea of content: soil system dynamics; bedrock, organic matter; water; soil layers (horizons) – soil profiles; pH; soil structure; soil texture; soil types: e.g. oxisols, podsols, gleysols, peat soils; weathered soils, calcareous rich soils; soil properties and components; factors influencing soils: weathering, climate, oxidation, animal action, erosion (wind, water, chemical); damage: compaction, agricultural effects, ironpans, ecological effects.

Ferrsol Oxisol

Course fee: £165.00 start this course for £15.50


Instalments: these are made by standing order at £16.50 p.c.m. International transactions will incur additional fees. You can try unit 1 before committing to the whole course. Click here for payment options including PayPal, instalments and bank transfer.


Course materials are sent via email but paper copies are available for an additional fee of £15 per unit. Postage charges may need to be added depending on your location.


Enrolment form

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