This module will focus on linking patterns to processes across scales and levels of organization, and familiarize you with theory and dynamic models in Ecology


Activity and Goals

Reading and Homework


September 13, 2016

Discussion of Redfield (1958) and Klausmeier (2004)

  • Define stoichiometry
  • Understand how we can use stoichiometry to address ecological questions
  • Identify research frontiers in stoichiometry
  • Identify assumptions of models
  • Understand how to utilize an equilibrium analysis
  • Optimal strategies and tradeoffs

In your own words, what were the key underlying assumptions of the Klausmeier model?  Were the assumptions justified?

(1 page limit)


September 15, 2016

Discussion of homework

Group activity: patterns in data

  • Link across scales of organization
  • Utilize and understand lots of data
  • Recognize patterns leading to a hypothesis

Write up the question and hypothesis developed in class. What pattern(s) led you here? Why did you develop this hypothesis?

Read Sterner (1990)


September 20, 2016

Discussion of hypotheses

Discussion of Sterner (1990)

Introduction to modeling project 

  • Formalizing ideas (operationalizing)
  • Critically read and analyze theoretical papers

Develop a box and arrow diagram of a model you want to explore.  Begin translating these into a system of equations.


September 22, 2016

Group feedback on models

Begin working on model analysis

  • Develop and analyze models
  • Understand reproducible work
  • Translating assumptions into equations

Implement Sterner model 2 and loop. 

Example Figures



September 27, 2016

Group feedback on project progress

Finish project plan of action

  • Develop and analyze models
  • Understand reproducible work 
  • Translating assumptions into equations


September 29, 2016

Group presentations of project

  • Present the project
  • Provide feedback to colleagues about their work
  • Follow through with the scientific method
  • Effectively communicate your methods and results

Presentation and finalize written report