Applied Ecology (AEC)

AEC 295  Special Topics in Applied Ecology  (1-3 credit hours)  

Special topics and experimental offerings in Applied Ecology including developmental courses offered on a trial basis. Intended for students at an intermediate level of training in Biological Sciences.

Prerequisite: BIO 181

Typically offered in Fall, Spring, and Summer

AEC 360/PB 360  Ecology  (4 credit hours)  

The science of ecology, including factors which control distribution and population dynamics of organisms, structure and function of biological communities, and energy flow and nutrient cycling in ecosystems; contrasts among the major biomes; and principles governing ecological responses to global climatic and other environmental changes.

Prerequisite: C- or better in BIO 181

Typically offered in Spring only

AEC 380  Water Resources: Global Issues in Ecology, Policy, Management, and Advocacy  (3 credit hours)  

This course will take a broad look at global issues associated with water resources, including the ways that people interact with water (how we use, degrade, conserve, and advocate for water and water rights). And how these interactions shape our lives. Woven throughout the course is the fact that science (ecology), policy (resource management), and cultural perspectives interact (sometimes in cooperation and sometimes in conflict) on many topics related to water. Students will explore water resource issues from the perspectives of ecology, natural resource management, and different cultures. The course is appropriate for students with interests in the life and social sciences.

Prerequisite: BIO 181

GEP Global Knowledge, GEP Interdisciplinary Perspectives

Typically offered in Summer only

AEC 400  Applied Ecology  (3 credit hours)  

Global climate change, over-fishing, habitat loss, altered nutrient cycles, and the spread of invasive species are among the world's pressing global environmental issues. Solutions to these problems are complex, but firmly rooted in the fundamental tenets of ecological theory. The field of applied ecology is premised on using these fundamental ecological principles to help solve the environmental challenges we face. This course will provide an overview of the field of applied ecology, based on a series of 12 individual case studies. Working from the individual to global level, the course will provide a broad perspective on the field of applied ecology.

Prerequisite: PB/BIO 360

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 419/AEC 519  Freshwater Ecology  (4 credit hours)  

The course explores the structure and function of streams, lakes, and wetlands, including physical, chemical and biological controls of productivity and species composition of aquatic plants and animals and effects of pollution on organisms and water quality. The laboratory emphasizes modern, hands-on techniques for answering fundamental and applied questions. One local weekend field trip required. Credit in both AEC 419 and AEC 519 is not allowed.

Prerequisite: C- or better in BIO/PB 360

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 420  Introduction to Fisheries Science  (3 credit hours)  

Role of fish in aquatic ecosystems, fish biology, fish ecology, fisheries management and conservation. Emphasis on aquatic ecosystems and food webs, life history and ecology of important sport and commercial fishes, population and community dynamics, and theory and practice of fisheries management and conservation. Case studies from freshwater, estuarine and marine systems.

Prerequisite: C- or better in BIO/PB 360

Typically offered in Spring only

AEC 423  Introduction to Fisheries Sciences Laboratory  (1 credit hours)  

General anatomy and identification of common freshwater, estuarine and marine fish, functional morphology, age and growth analyses, fish health and diets. Computer analyses of bioenergetic and population dynamics.

Corequisite: FW/BIO 420

Typically offered in Spring only

AEC 424  Marine Fisheries Ecology  (3 credit hours)  

This course covers the life history, stock concept, fishing gears, stock assessment approaches, fish-habitat relationships, socio-economics, and management of marine fishes. Several field trips to state and federal agency laboratories and fish houses/docks are used to emphasize fish sampling, biological sample processing, and gear design. This course is part of the semester at CMAST program and requires students to be on site in Morehead City, NC.

Prerequisite: BIO 181

Typically offered in Spring only

AEC 441  Biology of Fishes  (3 credit hours)  

Behavior, evolution, physiology and ecology of fishes, emphasizing their adaptations for life in streams, lakes, and oceans.

"Corequisite: AEC 442 Biology of Fishes Laboratory"

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 442  Biology of Fishes Laboratory  (1 credit hours)  

Field and laboratory exercises with the common fish species and communities of North Carolina. Field trips to local streams and lakes plus weekend trips to coastal, estuarine, and mountain habitats.

Corequisite: AEC 441

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 460  Field Ecology and Methods  (4 credit hours)  

Field Ecology and Methods will expose senior students with interests in Ecology and Evolution to the diverse field approaches used to address ecological questions. The course considers and implements a variety of field approaches ranging from microcosm

Prerequisite: C- or better in ST 311 and BIO 360

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 492  External Learning Experience in Applied Ecology  (1-3 credit hours)  

Learning experience in applied ecology within an academic framework with facilities and resources on or off campus. Contact and arrangements with prospective supervisors must be done by the student. Prior approval by faculty advisor and minor coordina

Prerequisite: BIO 181 (Variable, depending on instructor)

Typically offered in Fall, Spring, and Summer

AEC 493  Internal Learning Experience in Applied Ecology  (1-3 credit hours)  

Internal learning experience in applied ecology within an academic framework with facilities and resources on campus. Contact and arrangements with prospective supervisors must be done by the student. Prior approval by faculty advisor and minor coordi

Prerequisite: BIO 181 (Variable, depending on instructor)

Typically offered in Fall and Spring

AEC 495  Advanced Special Topics in Applied Ecology  (1-3 credit hours)  

Special topics and experimental offerings in Applied Ecology including developmental courses offered on a trial basis. Intended for students at an advanced level of training in Biological Sciences.

Prerequisite: BIO 181

Typically offered in Fall, Spring, and Summer

AEC 501  Ornithology  (4 credit hours)  

The biology of birds. Lecture topics include evolution, functional morphology, physiology, ecology and behavior. Field and museum laboratories emphasize particular aspects of morphology, ecology and behavior, as well as taxonomy and identification.One coastal weekend field trip required.

Prerequisite: BIO 181, BIO 183, and (BIO 250 or BIO/PB 360)

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 502  Introduction to Biological Research  (2 credit hours)  

The course provides a philosophical background for the field of ecology, then transitions to practical aspects of the field including a focus on grant proposal development, how to read and review papers and grant proposals, and how to give a presentation at a scientific meeting. A series of outside speakers will provide a broad perspective on the resources and opportunities available for graduate students at North Carolina State University. An emphasis will be placed on peer collaboration and feedback, developing professional relationships that will be important throughout the graduate tenor of this cohort of students.

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 503  Foundations of Ecology  (2 credit hours)  

This course covers major concepts, themes, and theories in ecology, including population, community and ecosystem ecology, and evolutionary ecology. Students are introduced to the core skill of critically evaluating scientific papers. The format of the course is readings from the primary literature and student-lead discussions. This course is focused toward first- and second-year graduate students, especially those in preparation for their preliminary exam.

Prerequisite: Graduate standing

Typically offered in Spring only

AEC 509/ENT 509  Biology of Aquatic Insects  (3 credit hours)  

Life history descriptions and identification of aquatic insects. Emphasis on behavioral and physiological adaptations to diverse habitats and the role of insects in aquatic ecosystem function and as indicators of water quality. The course includes 3-4 Saturday collecting trips to a local pond and streams in the mountains, piedmont and coastal plain. Collecting trips are not required, but are strongly encouraged.

Typically offered in Spring only

AEC 510  Machine Learning Approaches in Biological Sciences  (2 credit hours)  

A wide range of high-throughput technologies are now being used to generate data to answer an ever-increasingly diverse set of questions about biological systems. The next great challenge is integrating data analysis in a systems biology approach that utilizes novel supervised machine learning methods, which accommodate heterogeneity of data, are robust to biological variation, and provide mechanistic insight. The course will not focus on detailed mathematical models, but instead on how these machine learning tools may be used to analyze biological data, in particular gene and protein expression.

Restriction: Graduate standing; Senior Undergraduates with permission from instructor

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 515/FW 515  Fish Physiology  (3 credit hours)  

The biology of fishes: physiology, anatomy, endocrinology, behavior and genetics. Designed especially for graduate students in fisheries. Several trips to research laboratories taken.

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 519/AEC 419  Freshwater Ecology  (4 credit hours)  

The course explores the structure and function of streams, lakes, and wetlands, including physical, chemical and biological controls of productivity and species composition of aquatic plants and animals and effects of pollution on organisms and water quality. The laboratory emphasizes modern, hands-on techniques for answering fundamental and applied questions. One local weekend field trip required. Credit in both AEC 419 and AEC 519 is not allowed.

Prerequisite: C- or better in BIO/PB 360

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 586/FW 586  Aquaculture  (3 credit hours)  

Biological and general principles of aquaculture. Emphasis on the present status of aquaculture, species involved, techniques employed, and problems encountered. Discussion of recent advances in research and development and identification of areas of future research and development.

Prerequisite: BO 360 or ZO 260 or Graduate standing or Senior standing

Typically offered in Spring only

AEC 587/FW 587  Aquaculture Laboratory  (1 credit hours)  

Methods and techniques of cultivating aquatic organisms. Field trips and reports on local hatcheries and facilities required. (Three to four overnight field trips taken on week days to coastal areas, state hatcheries, and private hatcheries; students responsible for shared room costs and their meals. Four field trips also taken on laboratory day within driving range of Raleigh.)

Prerequisite: BO 360 or ZO 260 or Graduate standing or Senior standing, Corequisite: ZO 586

Typically offered in Spring only

AEC 592  Special Topics in Applied Ecology  (1-6 credit hours)  

Special Topics in Applied Ecology. Topics will vary.

Typically offered in Fall, Spring, and Summer

AEC 624  Advanced Fisheries Science  (2 credit hours)  

This is a seminar style course where students and faculty discuss readings in advanced fisheries science. The course is offered to students at CMAST (live) and on main campus (using Zoom or related online meeting software). Transportation is not required.

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 630  Special Topics in AEC  (1-6 credit hours)  

Special Topics in AEC

Typically offered in Fall, Spring, and Summer

AEC 710  Sampling Animal Populations  (3 credit hours)  

Statistical methods applicable to sampling of wildlife populations, including capture-recapture, removal, change in ratio, quadrant and line transect sampling. Emphasis on model assumptions and study design.

Prerequisite: ST 512

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 718  Community Ecology  (3 credit hours)  

Animal community structure and function. Effects of competition, predation, coevolution and disturbance on community composition. Emphasis on ecological and evolutionary controversies from empirical and theoretical approaches.

Prerequisite: BO 360 or ZO 260, BO(ZO) 760; BO(ZO) 365

Typically offered in Spring only

AEC 726/FW 726  Quantitative Fisheries Management  (3 credit hours)  

Current methods for assessment and management of exploited fish populations, including sampling methods, data analysis and modeling. A required research paper or project.

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 756  Ecology Of Fishes  (3 credit hours)  

Physiological ecology of fishes emphasizing energetics, production and adaptations to aquatic mediums. Ecological classification of fishes and theory of resource partitioning in freshwater, estuarine and marine realms.

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 761  Conservation and Climate Science  (3 credit hours)  

Conservation Science applies principles from ecology, genetics, and other biological disciplines and social sciences to the conservation of biological diversity. This course will train students in techniques in population ecology such as population viability analysis; community ecology and theories of biodiversity; and reserve selection algorithms. The course will also expose and trains students to understand climate science and using climate data for ecological studies. The class will examine threats to biodiversity such as habitat fragmentation and loss, climate change, and invasion by exotic species. These issues will be considered within the context of economic, social, and legal constraints. Graduate status or permission of instructor.

Typically offered in Fall only

AEC 770  Advanced Topics In Ecology I  (3 credit hours)  

Development of subject matter in major fields of ecology through seminars and lectures and principles illustrated by laboratory exercises and field trips. Microenvironment, population biology, community ecology, ecosystems and nutrient cycling.

Typically offered in Spring only