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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Deanery of Biomedical Sciences : Biomedical Sciences

Postgraduate Course: Led by locals: power and participation in conservation (BIME11193)

Course Outline
SchoolDeanery of Biomedical Sciences CollegeCollege of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate)
Course typeOnline Distance Learning AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThis course takes a critical approach to study the social and political dimensions of conservation practice.
Course description In this course, we will draw on theory and concepts from social sciences, including political ecology, in order to study the role of power and participation in conservation practice.

We will consider a diverse range of perspectives, reflecting the plurality of knowledge and worldviews that exists across actors and stakeholders in conservation.

Social politics of conservation are highly contextual and fast evolving, therefore the case studies and examples presented in the course will reflect topical issues and students will be asked to draw on their own environment and experiences, with core themes as follows:

1. Scales of governance and participation
2. Social groups in conservation e.g. race, indigeneity, political entities and other self-organised groups e.g. community, institutions.
3. Power in conservation
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  None
Course Start Flexible
Course Start Date 05/08/2023
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Online Activities 25, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 53 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Coursework 100%
written (60%) and online (40%)

Assessments will cover the 4 learning objectives, although the specific details and focus of the assessment items will be flexible to ensure the topics are current and of relevance/importance in this field of study and adaptable to class sizes.

Through a written assignment, students must demonstrate a conceptual and theoretical understanding of power in analysis of a conservation practice.

In an asynchronous online discussion with peers, students will develop their own case studies of locally led conservation.
Feedback Formative feedback will be available to students for both assignments if required. An open discussion forum (visible to all students on the course) will be available for each assignment where students can ask questions about what is required of them. They can check they have interpreted the
assignment brief correctly and seek guidance on whether their general ideas are appropriate before they complete and submit their work.

Extensive summative feedback will be given for both assignments. The written assignment will be marked up directly in Grademark and additional summary feedback provided. Feedback for the online assignment will be in the form of general comments on the level of engagement, content and quality of postings. In both cases, feedback will clearly identify both positives and areas for improvement.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate knowledge of social science theory and principles, and critically reflect on their relevance to conservation science and practice.
  2. Demonstrate a conceptual understanding of power and its application in the critical appraisal of conservation practice(s).
  3. Demonstrate a sound knowledge of participatory conservation approaches.
  4. Explore and analyse examples of counter-power and local initiative in conservation practice.
Reading List
Core reference textbooks for this course are:

- Baldauf, C. ed., 2020. Participatory Biodiversity Conservation: Concepts, Experiences, and Perspectives. Springer Nature.
- Benjaminsen, T.A. and Svarstad, H., 2021. Political Ecology: A Critical Engagement with Global Environmental Issues. Cham: Palgrave MacMillan
- Carpenter, C., 2020. Power in Conservation: Environmental Anthropology Beyond Political Ecology. Routledge

Weekly reading lists will be released as the course progresses.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Personal and intellectual autonomy, outlook and engagement, research and enquiry.

You will develop intellectual autonomy by directing the focus of your assessments and discussions. You will be encouraged to explore knowledge generated within your own environment and draw on your own experiences. You will also build personal autonomy by developing understanding of your own position and process through reflection.

Engagement with others perspectives and knowledges will broaden your outlook and develop your capacity to communicate effectively and inclusively within a diverse community.

You will develop your research skills by engaging with both theoretical and empirical scientific literatures to enable a depth of enquiry. You will also draw on literature and sources of knowledge outside of peer-review publications to develop skill in utilising these critically and effectively within
a scientific process.
Keywordspolitical ecology,conservation,participatory,diversity,governance,stakeholder,power
Course organiserMs Louise Beveridge
Course secretaryMr Andrew Le Tissier
Tel: (0131 6)51 4075
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