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The University of Southampton

BIOL2007 Plant Development and Function

Module Overview

This module provides an understanding of plant function and development at a molecular, cellular and whole organism level.

Aims and Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Have an understanding of the major developmental events in the life of a plant
  • Be able to describe aspects of plant function including response to light and other organisms; hormones; phloem transport; cell wall biosynthesis and senescence.
  • Be competent in a number of plant related techniques.
  • Have worked as part of a team
  • Have an awareness of safety in the laboratory
  • Have written up findings in several different types of assignment.
  • Used statistics and graphics packages to present practical findings


This module will centre on the study of growth and development processes in higher plants both at the level of the cell and the whole organisms and in relation to the environment. It will also cover plant interactions with other organisms and plant defence mechanisms. Functional aspects related to development will also be considered. The major growth and development features of the plant will be discussed as will impacts of abiotic and biotic stress. The responses of the plant to light and the role of phytochrome will be considered, as will the changes occurring at the onset of senescence. The mechanisms of short and long distance transport will be described as will the biosynthesis of the cell wall. The module also considers the relevance of developmental processes in a changing environment, with particular emphasis on the role of model organisms in determining gene function and the manipulation of plant characteristics using biotechnology.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Lectures, practicals.

Practical classes and workshops12
Independent Study106
Supervised time in studio/workshop12
Total study time150



MethodPercentage contribution
Practical 30%
Written assessment 70%


MethodPercentage contribution
Coursework 30%
Written assessment 70%
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