AGRI06004 2016 Plant Science

General Details

Full Title
Plant Science
Transcript Title
Plant Science
N/A %
Subject Area
AGRI - Agriculture
ESCI - Environmental Science
06 - NFQ Level 6
05 - 05 Credits
Start Term
2016 - Full Academic Year 2016-17
End Term
2019 - Full Academic Year 2019-20
Billy Fitzgerald
Programme Membership
SG_SAGRI_G06 000000 Higher Certificate in Science in Agri-Food Science SG_BACCO_C06 201700 Higher Certificate in Business in Business in Accounting and Marketing SG_SAGRI_B07 201800 Bachelor of Science in Science in Agri-Food Science SG_SAGRI_H08 201800 Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Science in Agri-Food Science

This module describes how plants grow and reproduce and how they provide a source of food for animals and man. It describes the structures of plants that provide for growth, photosynthesis and reproduction. It explains the factors that affect plant growth in terms of environmental conditions and how plants are affected by disease caused by fungi and viruses. It describes the classification and features of plants of agricultural importance including weeds.


Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module the learner will/should be able to;


Describe the parts and functions of plant cells including cell division


Describe the anatomy of various plant structures and how these relate to plant growth and reproduction.


Describe the morphological differences between monocot and dicots and give examples of plants belong to each growth


Understand the mechanisms and factors affecting plant growth and processes, such as, plant hormones, photosynthesis, respiration, water and mineral uptake, and transpiration.


Describe the process of plant propagation, pollination and fertilisation, seed dispersal and seed germination.


Know how plants are classified and the main families of plants of agricultural importance including weeds.


Understand the essential differences between algae, mosses, ferns, bacteria, fungi and viruses.


Describe the role of bacteria and fungi in the biodegradation of organic matter and nutrient recycling.


Describe the role of bacteria, fungi and viruses as plant diseases (including post- harvest).

Teaching and Learning Strategies


Module Assessment Strategies

The students will be assessed by 100% continuous assessment (50% thoery and 50% practical). Thoery assessment includes short answer questions, MCQs and assignments. Practicals will be assessed by laboratoy reports and short answer questions.

Repeat Assessments

The learner will be given an opportunity to demonstrate an adequate knowledge of theory and practical skills.

Indicative Syllabus


  1. Composition of plant cells and function of plant organelles.

  2. Cellular anatomy of roots, vascular tissues, leaves, flowers and seeds

  3. Modifications of root and stems in terms of vegetative propagation and storage of reserve food material.

  4. Plant growth stages of grasses, cereals, root crop, vegetable and fruit.

  5. Sexual reproduction, pollination, fruit and seed development, seed dispersal and germination.

  6. Differences between annual, biennial and perennial plants.

  7. Plant biochemistry, carbohydrates, hexoses and pentoses, mono-, di- and polysaccharides. Nucleic acids and protein synthesis.

  8. Metabolic pathways in relation to respiration and photosynthesis (C3 and C4 carbon fixation).

  9. Environmental factors affecting plant growth.

  10. Transport of water, nutrient and pesticides in plants by osmosis, active transport, transpiration and translocation.

  11. Classification of plants (algae, mosses, liverworts, horsetails, and ferns), conifer and angiosperms, differences between monocots and dicots.

  12. Use of keys for identifying plants. Features of plant families of agricultural significance.

  13. Role of plant breeding/genetics in producing new varieties to enhance crop yield, quality, tolerance to environmental factors, and resistance to pests and disease.

  14. Role of bacteria and fungi in the biodegradation of organic matter. Carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus and sulphur cycles.

  15. Life cycles of specific plant pathogenic fungi and viruses, Kock’s postulates in plant pathology. Effects of disease on plant growth and yield, mycotoxins, post-harvest diseases.



  1. Classification of plants (algae, mosses, liverworts, horsetails, and ferns), conifer and angiosperms, differences between monocots and dicots.

  2. Cellular anatomy of roots, vascular tissues, leaves, flowers and seeds.

  3. Use of keys for identifying plants. Features of plant families of agricultural significance.

  4. Environmental factors affecting plant growth (light, temperature, water, pH, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and nutrient requirements.

  5. Characteristics of fungi and selected plant pathogens.

  6. Kock’s postulates.


Coursework & Assessment Breakdown

Coursework & Continuous Assessment
100 %

Coursework Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Short answer questions Continuous Assessment Assessment 30 % OnGoing 1,2,3,4,5,7
2 Written assignments Continuous Assessment Assessment 20 % OnGoing 6,8,9
3 Practical Reports Continuous Assessment Practical Evaluation 50 % OnGoing 2,3,5,6,7,9

Full Time Mode Workload

Type Location Description Hours Frequency Avg Workload
Lecture Not Specified Lecture 2 Weekly 2.00
Laboratory Practical Science Laboratory Practical 2 Fortnightly 1.00
Total Full Time Average Weekly Learner Contact Time 3.00 Hours

Required & Recommended Book List

Recommended Reading
2011-11-03 A Text-Book of Botany: Morphological and Physiological (Cambridge Library Collection - Botany and Horticulture) Cambridge University Press
ISBN 1108038328 ISBN-13 9781108038324

Julius Sachs (1832-97) was an important and influential German botanist. He attended Charles University in Prague, gaining his doctorate in 1856. After appointments in Dresden, Chemnitz and Bonn, he took a professorship at the University of Freiburg in 1867. A year later he accepted a chair at Wrzburg, where he stayed for the rest of his career. Sachs made important contributions across botanical science, notably in cytology and photosynthesis. He was also largely responsible for the leap in understanding of plant physiology that took place in the second half of the nineteenth century. His famous Textbook of Botany, published here in the 1875 English translation of the final German edition (1874), takes the physiological approach that he pioneered and features hundreds of instructive illustrations and a full index. It was the most influential botanical text of its day, and the standard textbook on the subject for many years.

Recommended Reading
2012-04-30 Functional Biology of Plants Wiley-Blackwell
ISBN 0470699396 ISBN-13 9780470699393

Functional Biology of Plants provides students and researchers with a clearly written, well structured whole plant physiology text. Early in the text, it provides essential information on molecular and cellular processes so that the reader can understand how they are integrated into the development and function of the plant at whole-plant level. Thus, this beautifully illustrated book, presents a modern, applied integration of whole plant and molecular approaches to the study of plants.

It is divided into four parts: Part 1: Genes and Cells, looks at the origins of plants, cell structure, biochemical processes and genes and development. Part 2: The Functioning Plant, describes the structure and function of roots, stems, leaves, flowers and seed and fruit development. Part 3: Interactions and Adaptations, examines environmental and biotic stresses and how plants adapt and acclimatise to these conditions. Part 4: Future Directions, illustrates the great importance of plant research by looking at some well chosen, topical examples such as GM crops, biomass and bio-fuels, loss of plant biodiversity and the question of how to feed the planet.

Throughout the book there are text boxes to illustrate particular aspects of how humans make use of plants, and a comprehensive glossary proves invaluable to those coming to the subject from other areas of life science.

Recommended Reading
2005-01-10 Plant Pathology, Fifth Edition Academic Press
ISBN 0120445654 ISBN-13 9780120445653

This fifth edition of the classic textbook in plant pathology outlines how to recognize, treat, and prevent plant diseases. It provides extensive coverage of abiotic, fungal, viral, bacterial, nematode and other plant diseases and their associated epidemiology. It also covers the genetics of resistance and modern management on plant disease.

Plant Pathology, 5th Edition, is the most comprehensive resource and textbook that professionals, faculty and students can consult for well-organized, essential information. This thoroughly revised edition is 45% larger, covering new discoveries and developments in plant pathology and enhanced by hundreds of new color photographs and illustrations.

* The latest information on molecular techniques and biological control in plant diseases
* Comprehensive in coverage
* Numerous excellent diagrams and photographs
* A large variety of disease examples for instructors to choose for their course

Module Resources

URL Resources

Other Resources


Additional Information