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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Christian E. Torgersen
CFR 521
Seattle Campus

Current Topics in Forest Resources

Critical evaluation and discussion of published research in the broad field of forest resources. Topics and requirements vary. Offered: AWSp.

Class description

Introduction to Principles of Ecological Scaling. This 2-credit seminar typically offered in Spring Quarter provides an introduction to fundamental concepts about spatial and temporal scaling of ecological patterns and processes in relation to human perception and technology in ecological studies. TOPICS INCLUDE: Landscape perspectives; problems of scale in ecology; grain, extent, and scope; hierarchical scaling, disturbance, species–habitat relationships; time, space, and causality; fractals, semivariograms, correlograms, and wavelets.

Student learning goals

Emphasis is on understanding and applying principles of ecological scaling to students’ individual research projects (sampling design, analysis, and interpretation of results).

General method of instruction

Instructor leads discussions on concepts and readings during first hour, and students give presentations and lead discussions during second hour. Students are responsible for locating and obtaining weekly readings that can be downloaded from the library. Book chapters and difficult-to-find papers are provided for downloading by the instructor, and by students who choose to discuss papers not listed below.

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

Attendance and active contribution in group discussions on readings, concepts, and their application to individual research projects. Individual oral assignment: Students give informal 10-minute PowerPoint presentations and lead 10 minutes of group discussion on “problem(s) of scale” in their current or proposed research projects with specific reference to a paper selected from either the class readings or another “scale-related” scientific source.

Credit/no credit is determined by students’ completion of course requirements.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Christian E. Torgersen
Date: 01/29/2010