This unit comprises of two (2) compulsory on-campus workshops and a compulsory 8-day field trip to the Jervis Bay area on the south coast of NSW (note, there is no formal examination for this unit).
The Jervis Bay region is an area that is facing many of the environmental problems and issues that are common to coastal regions outside the major metropolitan areas. This includes the impacts of future population growth in the region and predicted sea level rise due to climate change. The work that we will do during the field trip will contribute to the understanding of these problems and the development of management protocols. Students will gain experience in field data collection in a range of discipline areas and will learn how to integrate those data sets to provide meaningful contributions to management decisions by Government authorities and community groups.
The two on-campus workshops are designed to prepare students for the field trip, as well as the assessment tasks. Hence these workshops are critical to the unit and to ensuring an enjoyable and productive field trip.
Much of the work done in this unit is undertaken in groups. At Workshop 1, each student will be assigned to two different groups: 1. Field Group (or day group), and 2. Data Group (or evening group). All the field data collection will be carried out by the Field Groups who will rotate around the different activities each day. While the drawing together and reporting on the data collected for each field theme will be carried out by the Data Groups. Each Data Group will be made up of two or three people drawn from each Field Group. This will allow a mix of experiences and perspectives to be brought to the Data Groups, as well as representation from each Data Group to ensure that the field data is collected appropriately.
During the field trip, data collection and analysis will be undertaken over five days, covering the following five field themes:
- Terrestrial ecology
- Water quality
- Social analysis
- Aquatic ecology
- Coastal geomorphology
A staff member will be responsible for each of the field themes. Their role is two-fold: i) to guide the Data Groups in their development of the data collection methods and analysis, and ii) to guide the Field Groups in the use of field equipment and surveys to collect the field data each day.
Workshop 1 - Saturday 19 August 2017, 9 am - ~3 pm
The first workshop will be held at the end of Week 3 in room C5A229. The aims of the workshop are to:
- Provide an overview of the unit and field trip
- Organise students into Field and Data Groups
- Become familiar with the coastal zone management challenges at Jervis Bay
- Discuss the role of environmental policy and management implications
- Understand the components and structure of an environmental report, compared to other styles of academic writing
Workshop 2 - Saturday 2 September 2017, 9 am - ~3 pm
The second workshop will be held at end of Week 5 in room C5A229, and in this workshop, students will spend the day working in their Data Groups. The workshop will include discussions and activities depending on the theme, with the aim for each group to have a well thought-out plan and materials (e.g. data sheets) prior to the field trip. Previous years’ data will be available to use as examples where possible.
Field trip - Saturday 23 to Saturday 30 September 2017
The field trip will commence at 2:00pm on Saturday 23 September, at the Huskisson Beach Tourist Resort (caravan park) and will finish at 10 am on Saturday 30 September. Details on the location, what to bring, etc will be provided in Workshop 1.
Working in Groups:
Data Groups will meet in the evenings of the field trip to bring together the material collected each day. On the last full day of the field trip (i.e. Fri 29 September), each Data Group will give a brief presentation of their findings from the weeks work. In addition to the presentation, each group also needs to provide a comprehensive dataset for other students to use in their Individual Reports, as well as for archiving.
Field Groups will need to meet at the conference center in the caravan park each morning, ready to leave at 8 am unless otherwise advised. We will aim to return from the field at approximately 3-4 pm each day, or earlier to continue with data collection if needed e.g. plant identification, water quality measurements.
Students need to make their own arrangements for transport to and from Huskisson and during the field trip. To assist, a car pool will be initiated at the workshops.
Cabin accommodation has been organised for the group at the Huskisson Beach Tourist Resort. See: https://huskissonbeach.holidayhaven.com.au/ It is expected that students will share with 2 or 3 others (max of 4-share, but more likely 3-share per cabin depending on the bed configuration; we will ensure that every student has their own bed). The cabins are self-contained with kitchen facilities, ensuites, and single beds, double beds and/or bunks. All linen and towels are provided. The resort also has BBQ’s, a pool, tennis court and is located on the beach front of Jervis Bay.
Students must self-cater all meals for the week. This includes taking a packed lunch, adequate water and snacks into the field each day. Since students are required to work on their data analysis in the evenings, it is recommended that meals are planned around this accordingly. For example, an idea would be to form small groups or 4 or so, where one person takes turns cooking each night for the other three who use the time to work on the data analysis. On the last night after the presentations, we will head to the Husky Pub for dinner. The main street of Huskisson, which is a short walk from the caravan park, has a supermarket, restaurants, cafes, the Husky Pub and an RSL.
Field trip costs:
The cost of the field trip is not included in the course fees, however all attempts have been made to keep these to a minimum. Additional costs that will need to be paid by each student include accommodation, meals and transport. Payment for accommodation (7 nights) will need to be made to the University Cashier prior to the commencement of the field trip. The indicative cost for this year is $340 per person, but this will be finalised after the first workshop depending on student numbers and sharing arrangements. Meals and transport are at own cost.
Essentials for field work:
Each student will need to ensure that they are equipped with the following essentials for the field trip:
- Adequate food each day in the field (i.e. packed lunch)
- Adequate water each day in the field (minimum 1 ltr)
- Rain jacket
- Clothing appropriate for the weather, season and field task (e.g. warm jumper, long-sleeved shirt for sun protection)
- Presentable street wear that is suitable to approach members of the public for interviews is also required for the social analysis component
- Cargo pants and shirts with pockets are recommended for the terrestrial ecology component
- Hat, sunglasses and sunscreen
- Closed shoes or boots (old sneakers are useful for the aquatic ecology component)
- Field book, clipboard, writing materials and camera
- Laptop and writing materials for working on the data analysis
All field measurement-related equipment will be supplied.