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Essential Objectives

Course Syllabus

Revision Date: 25-Jan-23

Spring 2023 | BIO-1250-VO01 - Wildlife Ecology

Online Class

Online courses take place 100% online via Canvas, without required in-person or Zoom meetings.

Location: Online
Credits: 3 (45 hours)
Day/Times: Meets online
Semester Dates: 01-24-2023 to 05-08-2023
Last day to drop without a grade: 02-12-2023 - Refund Policy
Last day to withdraw (W grade): 03-26-2023 - Refund Policy
This course has started, please contact the offering academic center about registration


Lindsay Webb
View Faculty Credentials

Hiring Coordinator for this course: Jennifer Guarino

General Education Requirements

This section meets the following VSC General Education Requirement(s) for Catalog Year 21-22 and later:
Natural Science
  1. Many degree programs have specific general education recommendations. In order to avoid taking unnecessary classes, please consult with additional resources like your program evaluation, your academic program catalog year page, and your academic advisor.
  2. Courses may only be used to meet one General Education Requirement.

Course Description

This course is the study of the ecology and life histories of common animal species and their habitats. The underlying scientific and technical principles will be examined as they relate to wildlife conservation efforts by federal, state, and private agencies. This course places special emphasis on Vermont's wildlife.

Essential Objectives

1. Demonstrate understanding of the methods of scientific investigation in wildlife ecology including observation, and hypothesis testing.
2. Analyze wildlife population dynamics as expressed both by population growth equations and by basic quantitative population measures including sex ratio, birth rate, recruitment, survivorship, and mortality.
3. Analyze the effects of genetic diversity and environment on wildlife behaviors including predation, competition, territoriality, mating systems, and reproductive strategies.
4. Explain basic population sampling theory and modeling, as well as techniques including census, estimate, and index.
5. Analyze the integral relationships within and between wildlife and their habitats including selection, adaptation, and preferences.
6. Examine the life histories of common mammals, fish, waterfowl, reptiles and amphibians.
7. Demonstrate proficiency in making field observations by following scientific protocols, keeping accurate records, and writing detailed reports.
8. Examine the impact of human behavior on wildlife populations including, but not limited to, species extinction, habitat loss and climate change.
9. Examine wildlife management practices and policies at private, state, tribal, and federal levels, and their impacts on wildlife populations and human societies.
10. Discuss laws and politics related to wildlife ecology including the Endangered Species Act, US and VT Fish and Wildlife Service, and Conservation Commissions.
11. Demonstrate proficiency in understanding, interpreting, applying, and evaluating the accuracy of data and information sources.
12. Explain how knowledge created in the natural sciences has contributed to the creation, maintenance and dismantling of social inequalities and discuss the impacts of diversity and inclusion on scientific research and practice.

Required Technology

More information on general computer and internet recommendations is available on the CCV IT Support page. https://support.ccv.edu/general/computer-recommendations/

Please see CCV's Digital Equity Statement (pg. 45) to learn more about CCV's commitment to supporting all students access the technology they need to successfully finish their courses.

Required Textbooks and Resources

This course only uses free Open Educational Resources (OER) and/or library materials. For details, see the Canvas Site for this class.


We will be using several methods for learning in this course:

  • Active online discussion forums
  • Journal articles, presentations, websites, and reports
  • Weekly assignments and quizzes

Evaluation Criteria

You will be evaluated on your general mastery of the Essential Objectives for the course, level of participation, and overall quality of work (including written mechanics). In particular, I will be using the following areas to evaluate your work:

  • Discussion Boards (25%)
  • Weekly Assignments (30%)
  • Quizzes (25%)
  • Research Paper (20%)

Grading Criteria

CCV Letter Grades as outlined in the Evaluation System Policy are assigned according to the following chart:

A Less than 9893
A-Less than 9390
B+Less than 9088
B Less than 8883
B-Less than 8380
C+Less than 8078
C Less than 7873
C-Less than 7370
D+Less than 7068
D Less than 6863
D-Less than 6360
FLess than 60 
NPLess than 600

Weekly Schedule

Week/ModuleTopic  Readings  Assignments


Welcome, Introduction to Wildlife Ecology


New England Wildlife Prezi’s, Vermont Wildlife Websites


Assignments: Evolutionary Tree, Wildlife Ecology

Discussion Forum: Introductions



Food, Cover, Water, Space


E-textbook Chapters, Evolution Prezi, Evolution Video


Assignments: Go Wild, GIS Modeling

Discussion Forum: You Are What You Eat



Wildlife Habitats in Vermont


Wildlife Habitat Websites, Vermont Habitat E-textbook


Assignments: Vermont Wildlife Habitat

Discussion Forum: Wildlife Habitat Discussion



Corridors and Fragmentation


Wildlife Connectivity Websites and Flyer


Assignments: Habitat Connectivity, Quiz

Discussion Forum: Neighborhood Land



Animal Behavior


E-Textbook, Podcast


Assignments: Mating Ritual

Discussion Forum: Predicting Wildlife Behavior



Wildlife Management in Vermont


Wildlife Management Video, E-textbook


Assignments: Oh Deer!

Discussion Forum: Hunting and Trapping as a Management Tool



Wildlife Management Continued




Assignments: Mark-Recapture Lab, Research Paper Topic, Quiz

Discussion Forum: Marten Survey



Population Ecology


E-textbook, Population Ecology Video


Assignments: Deer Predation or Starvation

Discussion Forum: Carrying Capacity



Community Ecology


E-textbook, Community Ecology Video


Assignments: Food Web, Lynx-Hare Cycle, Quiz

Discussion Forum: Community Ecology



Wildlife Diseases, Pests, and Invasives


Websites, Videos, Podcast


Assignment: Lyme Disease

Discussion Forum: Invasive Wildlife



Law and Policy


Environmental Law and Policy


Assignments: Wild Pet Kitten, Research Paper References

Discussion Forum: Wildlife Law



Human Dimensions


Human Dimensions E-textbook, Human Dimensions Master’s Thesis Project, Video


Assignments: Human-Wildlife Survey



Conservation Biology


Conservation Biology Website and E-textbook


Assignments: Conservation Biology

Discussion Forum: Sage Grouse Conservation



Climate Change and Wildlife


Climate Change Videos, Websites


Assignments: Climate Concerns, Quiz

Discussion Forum: Go Wild – Winter Adaptations



Course Wrap-Up


Assignments: Final Research Paper

Discussion Forum: Wildlife Ecology


Attendance Policy

Regular attendance and participation in classes are essential for success in and are completion requirements for courses at CCV. A student's failure to meet attendance requirements as specified in course descriptions will normally result in a non-satisfactory grade.

  • In general, missing more than 20% of a course due to absences, lateness or early departures may jeopardize a student's ability to earn a satisfactory final grade.
  • Attending an on-ground or synchronous course means a student appeared in the live classroom for at least a meaningful portion of a given class meeting. Attending an online course means a student posted a discussion forum response, completed a quiz or attempted some other academically required activity. Simply viewing a course item or module does not count as attendance.
  • Meeting the minimum attendance requirement for a course does not mean a student has satisfied the academic requirements for participation, which require students to go above and beyond simply attending a portion of the class. Faculty members will individually determine what constitutes participation in each course they teach and explain in their course descriptions how participation factors into a student's final grade.

Participation Expectations

  • Each weeks starts on Tuesday morning (12:01 am to be exact).
  • To be considered "present" each week in class, you must indicate you are there, by posting in the discussion forum or handing in an assignment by Monday night.
  • Each week there is a discussion forum that you must participate in which includes an initial post and commenting on two other posts.
  • Each week there will be at least one assignment that is due by midnight Monday night.
  • There are several quizzes throughout the semester based on the content covered in class.
  • There is one research paper due at the end of the semester.

Missing & Late Work Policy

I do accept late work, but out of respect for those who get their assignments in on time, there will be a late penalty assessed (1% off for each day it is late). Please reach out to me if extenuating circumstances prevent you from handing in your work.

Accessibility Services for Students with Disabilities:

CCV strives to mitigate barriers to course access for students with documented disabilities. To request accommodations, please
  1. Provide disability documentation to the Accessibility Coordinator at your academic center. https://ccv.edu/discover-resources/students-with-disabilities/
  2. Request an appointment to meet with accessibility coordinator to discuss your request and create an accommodation plan.
  3. Once created, students will share the accommodation plan with faculty. Please note, faculty cannot make disability accommodations outside of this process.

Academic Integrity

CCV has a commitment to honesty and excellence in academic work and expects the same from all students. Academic dishonesty, or cheating, can occur whenever you present -as your own work- something that you did not do. You can also be guilty of cheating if you help someone else cheat. Being unaware of what constitutes academic dishonesty (such as knowing what plagiarism is) does not absolve a student of the responsibility to be honest in his/her academic work. Academic dishonesty is taken very seriously and may lead to dismissal from the College.