ENVSCI 705 : Handling Environmental Data
2023 Semester One (1233) (15 POINTS)
The sciences are awash in data, and environmental science is no different. Whereas in the past individual scientists might have collected their own data over their careers, working either independently or in small collaborations, this is no longer always the case. Instead, large databases allow synthesis-driven science, and computational advances open up new avenues for the analysis of such data. However, these new approaches to science also mean that scientists need to develop new skills in manipulating and analyzing large data, visualizing it effectively, and being aware of the uncertainties it carries. This course is designed to equip you with some of these skills. The course is organized as a series of studio-taught workshops combining lectures and interactive code development.
Capabilities Developed in this Course
|Capability 1:||Disciplinary Knowledge and Practice|
|Capability 2:||Critical Thinking|
|Capability 3:||Solution Seeking|
|Capability 4:||Communication and Engagement|
|Capability 5:||Independence and Integrity|
- Manipulate and visualise environmental data and associated uncertainties, using skills developed through readings and studio workshop exercises (Capability 1, 2, 3 and 4)
- Communicate the outcomes of the analysis of environmental data (Capability 4)
- Produce a reproducible data workflow that demonstrates understanding of the principles of reproducible research practice (Capability 1)
- Develop, design and justify a research report using the technical skills developed during the course. (Capability 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5)
|Coding exercises||40%||Individual Coursework|
|Assessment Type||Learning Outcome Addressed|
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Note that ENVSCI 705 does not aim to teach statistical methods, although we will touch on this – rather, it is concerned with how to manage and wrangle environmental data, with statistical analysis as one of many possible outcomes.
We will make use of the free R IDE, RStudio, which runs on Linux, Windows, and Mac OS. You will need to bring a laptop to each teaching session. Before the first session, please ensure you have the latest version of R and RStudio installed on your machine. This is important, as some packages used in the workshop may not install correctly (or at all) if R and RStudio are not up to date.
This course is a standard 15-point course and students are expected to spend 10 hours per week involved in each 15-point course that they are enrolled in.
For this course, you can expect 30 hours of workshops, 10 hours of reading and thinking about the content and 80 hours of work on assignments, the report, and associated skills development.
Attendance is expected at scheduled activities including studios to complete components of the course. Lectures will be available as recordings. Other learning activities including tutorials will be available as recordings. The course will not include live online events. The activities for the course are scheduled as a standard weekly timetable.
Course materials are made available in a learning and collaboration tool called Canvas which also includes reading lists and lecture recordings (where available).
Please remember that the recording of any class on a personal device requires the permission of the instructor.
During the course Class Representatives in each class can take feedback to the staff responsible for the course and staff-student consultative committees.
At the end of the course students will be invited to give feedback on the course and teaching through a tool called SET or Qualtrics. The lecturers and course co-ordinators will consider all feedback.
Your feedback helps to improve the course and its delivery for all students.
The University of Auckland will not tolerate cheating, or assisting others to cheat, and views cheating in coursework as a serious academic offence. The work that a student submits for grading must be the student's own work, reflecting their learning. Where work from other sources is used, it must be properly acknowledged and referenced. This requirement also applies to sources on the internet. A student's assessed work may be reviewed against online source material using computerised detection mechanisms.
Class representatives are students tasked with representing student issues to departments, faculties, and the wider university. If you have a complaint about this course, please contact your class rep who will know how to raise it in the right channels. See your departmental noticeboard for contact details for your class reps.
The content and delivery of content in this course are protected by copyright. Material belonging to others may have been used in this course and copied by and solely for the educational purposes of the University under license.
You may copy the course content for the purposes of private study or research, but you may not upload onto any third party site, make a further copy or sell, alter or further reproduce or distribute any part of the course content to another person.
All students are asked to discuss any impairment related requirements privately, face to face and/or in written form with the course coordinator, lecturer or tutor.
Student Disability Services also provides support for students with a wide range of impairments, both visible and invisible, to succeed and excel at the University. For more information and contact details, please visit the Student Disability Services’ website http://disability.auckland.ac.nz
If your ability to complete assessed coursework is affected by illness or other personal circumstances outside of your control, contact a member of teaching staff as soon as possible before the assessment is due.
If your personal circumstances significantly affect your performance, or preparation, for an exam or eligible written test, refer to the University’s aegrotat or compassionate consideration page https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/students/academic-information/exams-and-final-results/during-exams/aegrotat-and-compassionate-consideration.html.
This should be done as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the affected test or exam date.
In the event of an unexpected disruption, we undertake to maintain the continuity and standard of teaching and learning in all your courses throughout the year. If there are unexpected disruptions the University has contingency plans to ensure that access to your course continues and course assessment continues to meet the principles of the University’s assessment policy. Some adjustments may need to be made in emergencies. You will be kept fully informed by your course co-ordinator/director, and if disruption occurs you should refer to the university website for information about how to proceed.
The delivery mode may change depending on COVID restrictions. Any changes will be communicated through Canvas.
Student Charter and Responsibilities
The Student Charter assumes and acknowledges that students are active participants in the learning process and that they have responsibilities to the institution and the international community of scholars. The University expects that students will act at all times in a way that demonstrates respect for the rights of other students and staff so that the learning environment is both safe and productive. For further information visit Student Charter https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/students/forms-policies-and-guidelines/student-policies-and-guidelines/student-charter.html.
Elements of this outline may be subject to change. The latest information about the course will be available for enrolled students in Canvas.
In this course students may be asked to submit coursework assessments digitally. The University reserves the right to conduct scheduled tests and examinations for this course online or through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Where tests or examinations are conducted online remote invigilation arrangements may be used. In exceptional circumstances changes to elements of this course may be necessary at short notice. Students enrolled in this course will be informed of any such changes and the reasons for them, as soon as possible, through Canvas.