University of Technology Sydney

91121 Aquatic Ecosystems

6cp; Forms of attendance in this subject have changed to enable social distancing and reduce the risks of spreading COVID-19 in our community. There may also have been changes to the assessment requirements. Consequently, the Subject Outline information for this subject has changed. Details of the changes may be published in an Addendum to the Subject Outline which is available through your LMS (Blackboard or Canvas)
Requisite(s): 91154c Ecology
The lower case 'c' after the subject code indicates that the subject is a corequisite. See definitions for details.


This subject gives students a comprehensive understanding of the ecology of aquatic ecosystems (freshwater and marine). It provides students with knowledge of the physical, chemical and biological processes and their interactions that occur in freshwater, marine and estuarine systems. It also introduces students to the effects of anthropogenic impacts of in-stream and catchment activities on the integrity of these ecosystems, and how these influence approaches to managing water resources. Students develop an appreciation of the importance of understanding the ecology of these systems as it underpins the ability to manage these resources for the benefit of the biota and humanity. Students study the rich and varied patterns of biodiversity and physical features among these habitats, and the importance of maintaining their integrity in the face of anthropogenic impacts. Understanding ecosystem integrity requires an understanding of the structure and function of the ecosystems. The subject develops the student's ability to research issues related to the independent written report component of the subject, to discuss the implications of their results in the broader context of the ecology and management of aquatic ecosystems.

This subject applies the knowledge gained in 91110 Experimental Design and Sampling in the practical activities which are project-based. It also provides the knowledge and skills required for the 91155 Stream and Lake Assessment.

Typical availability

Autumn session, City campus

Detailed subject description.

Access conditions

Note: The requisite information presented in this subject description covers only academic requisites. Full details of all enforced rules, covering both academic and admission requisites, are available at access conditions and My Student Admin.