OCEN4005 The Indian Ocean Environment

6 points
(see Timetable)

If this unit does not have an online alternative, then students who are presently unable to enter Western Australia and whose studies would be delayed by an inability to complete this unit, should contact the unit coordinator (details given on this page) to ascertain, on an individual case-by-case basis, if alternate arrangements can be made to support their study in this unit.

Non-standard teaching periodUWA (Perth)Face to face Predominantly face-to-face. On campus attendance required to complete this unit. May have accompanying resources online.
Non-standard teaching periodOnlineOnline timetabled 100% Online Unit. NO campus face-to-face attendance is required to complete this unit. All study requirements are online only. Unit includes some synchronous components, with a requirement for students to participate online at specific times.
This unit provides an overview of the dynamic processes governing the structure and function of marine ecosystems, with a particular focus on applications from the Indian Ocean. The unit introduces key concepts in physical, chemical, biological and geological ocean systems to explore—
• the geological formation and climate history of the Indian Ocean and its modern environmental characteristics;
• the role of weather and climate variability in driving regional ocean processes;
• the dynamics of ocean circulation and waves within the Indian Ocean;
• the diversity of marine habitats and species across the Indian Ocean, focusing on biodiversity and drivers of distribution and abundance;
• how physical ocean processes shape marine ecosystems along the Indian Ocean rim; and
• the influence on climate change on the physical, chemical and biological oceanography of the Indian Ocean and future projections.
Students are able to (1) demonstrate a knowledge of how the Indian Ocean has formed and its climate history, including the processes that have led to its modern environmental conditions; (2) identify how weather systems and climate cycles drive ocean processes through atmosphere–ocean coupling; (3) demonstrate an awareness of the regional ocean circulation patterns and wave conditions along the Indian Ocean rim, and assess the dominant physical drivers responsible; (4) demonstrate an understanding of the major marine habitats, ecosystems and species in the Indian Ocean, and link oceanic physical and chemical processes to the uniqueness and diversity of marine biota; (5) demonstrate an awareness of the major biogeochemical cycles in the ocean than shape marine ecosystems, and how these vary across the Indian Ocean; and (6) identify how climate change has altered modern ocean conditions across the Indian Ocean and the future projections and impacts.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) in-class exercises; (2) two field/laboratory reports; and (3) final project. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is only available in this unit in the case of a student who has obtained a mark of 45 to 49 and is currently enrolled in this unit, and it is the only remaining unit that the student must pass in order to complete their course.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Associate Professor Nicole Jones
Week of August 24: Introductory briefing session for all students

Aug 28-Sep 14: Online readings and upskilling activities (any oceanography primers, software tutorials etc.) made available.

Sep 14-Oct 23: Five day-long intensive sessions (same day each week) [this is a 6-week period due to the study break in the week of Sep 28]

Oct 26-Nov 13: Students work on and submit final assessment item/s
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.