2019-2020 / OCEA0094-1

Marine phanerogames ecology


15h Th, 10h Pr

Number of credits

 Master in oceanography (120 ECTS)3 crédits 


Sylvie Gobert

Language(s) of instruction

English language

Organisation and examination

Teaching in the first semester, review in January


Schedule online

Units courses prerequisite and corequisite

Prerequisite or corequisite units are presented within each program

Learning unit contents

Seagrasses (marine Magnoliophyta) live in the coastal waters of most of the worlds' continents. They provide food,  habitat for many, smaller marine organisms, some of which,  are commercially important. They also absorb nutrients from coastal run-off and stabilise sediment, helping to keep the water clear.
Seagrass meadows offer considerable potential for carbon sequestration. Seagrasses are unique amongst flowering plants, they can live entirely immersed in seawater. Adaptation to a marine environment imposes major constraints on morphology and structure.
The regression of seagrass meadows is a phenomenon which has been observed over several decades, the amplitude of this regression varies depending on the species and geographical zones under consideration.
After a brief introduction (definition, distribution, adaptation, taxonomy...), the course presents a broad spectrum of researches and techniques of samplings focused on the marine magnoliophyta.

Learning outcomes of the learning unit

The student will be able

  • to define and to determine the seagrasses, to develop effective written and oral communications skills through writing reports and delivering seminars.
  • to write and present a short research proposal with:
A chief scientist, a budget, the sponsors, employers A sampling plan with clear objectives, An identification of the scientific responsibilities of the consortium A statement and prioritization of study objectives A description of study area (including background information and station locations)  An identification of variables to be measured, containers and preservatives required A specification of analytical methods and data reporting requirements An identification of all quality control samples to be submitted with analytical samples A brief description of sampling equipment and methods, including station positioning technique A specific standard operating procedures addressing the collection of representative samples A proposed cruise schedule (including time, date and location of embarkation and debarkation, sample storage, handling, shipping and custom duty A survey vessel requirements (e.g., size, laboratory needs, sample storage needs) The health and safety of the sampling team The ethical aspects (protected species, lab experiments with vertebrates..) The Bibliography...  

Prerequisite knowledge and skills

To speak and understand English
A good basic knowledge on Biology
A good basic knowledge in Marine Ecology

Planned learning activities and teaching methods


  • Courses dedicated to theoretical aspects
  • Talks of invited researchers
  • A field trip on Posidonia oceanica meadow (For MER students)

Mode of delivery (face-to-face ; distance-learning)

Courses in face-to-face.
The attention of the student is regularly requested during tutorial classes
Field trip at STARESO (Calvi-Corse)
Courses in face-to-face.
The attention of the student is regularly requested during tutorial classes
Field trip at STARESO (Calvi-Corse) (MER students).

Recommended or required readings

The ppt constitute the basis of the course, they contain the essential information and not all of the oral comments given during the course.
The ppts are accessible on myUlg or given at the end of each course.

Assessment methods and criteria

The evaluation is based on 2 parts:

  • 1. A research project (3 pages) related to seagrass (see Research project description) based on a research article (50 % of the total score).
  • 2. A dissertation of 10 minutes on the proposed proposal (50 % of the total score). The presentation is graded not only on its content but also on its quality , clarity, respect of the timing.
To help you:

  • I will be your guide (courses, books...)
  • The field trip at STARESO
  • Presentation of researchers of my lab
  • The scientific posters
orbi: http://orbi.ulg.ac.be/ PublicationSylvieGobert
Research project description
The description of your research project may not exceed 3 pages, Font Arial 11. A bibliography is mandatory.
Requested budget
You will have access to an operating, "running" costs budget for research expenses, as well as travel and mobility.
-A Full CV (1 page max) that includes a list of publications in which the articles you have published as the main author are highlighted
Evaluation Criteria of the research project :
-Quality of the research project and its feasibility -The intrinsic quality of the project as well as the applicants' capacity to develop and manage theresearch project is considered -Adequacy of the required research, mobility and travel expenses budget is taken into account as well as the ethical issues the applicant has to deal with.
L'étudiant peut choisir de rédiger et présenter l'ensemble de l'examen en français ou en anglais.
To help you:

  • I will be your guide (courses, books...)
  • The field trip at STARESO (MER Students)
  • Presentation of researchers of my lab
  • The scientific posters
orbi: http://orbi.ulg.ac.be/ PublicationSylvieGobert

Work placement(s)

Taxonomy will be the subject of one lesson (Liege)
A field trip in Corsica (September 2018 for MER students)

Organizational remarks

  • Respect class times. 
  • If you contact the secretary or the professor by e-mail,  do not expect the replies to be immediate. Please, be patient.
  • University-assigned student e-mail is the Official means of communication with all students.



Prof Sylvie Gobert Océanologie Institut de Chimie. B6c-2/49 Tél: 04 3663329 e-mail:sylvie.gobert@uliege.be 
Secretariat M Lunetta: 04 366 50 62   https://www.facebook.com/oceanbioulg/ http://labos.ulg.ac.be/oceanologie/ http://www.stareso.ulg.ac.be/

  • Meeting with my secretary: Mrs Mariella Lunetta is in her office  (B6C, room 1/21 , Sart Tilman) the Tuesday from 8:30 -10:30 am and the Thursday from 13:30-15:00.
  • Meeting with me: I will make time available during and directly after the classes for your questions. I rarely can be available for unscheduled meeting. To make appointment , call 04 366 50 62 (Mrs Lunetta) or send an email: M.Lunetta@uliege.be. 
  • My malbox is in the room 2/48.
  • We ask for your co-operation with these regulations.