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Limnology, 15 cr

BIOR17 / TEK035

Course description

The main focus of this course is the structure and function of limnic ecosystems. This is carried out by presentation of recent theories and models about physical processes and biogeochemical cycles in relation to organisms and their interactions. In this context we discuss e.g. the microbial loop and trophic interaction hypotheses. Moreover, man’s and the society’s influence on the limnic ecosystem is illustrated. The course also includes training in chemical analysis and water sampling technique as well as excercises in species knowledge of phytoplankton, zooplankton, macrophytes, macroinvertebrates and fish. Teaching is performed as lectures, workshops and group discussions.

Field work

During one week, students get experience in field sampling in oligotrophic lakes at the Aneboda Field Station in Småland. In addition, a eutrophic lake in Scania is studied during a one-day excursion. Collected samples are analysed for water chemistry and organisms, i.e. phytoplankton, zooplankton, macrophytes, macro-invertebrates and fish, and data are interpreted in lake-systems perspective. All field work is carried out as several group projects that are planned and designed in advance by the students under teacher supervision.

The project

The field-trip results are presented both in writing and orally by the different groups’ members at the ending of the course. The purpose of the project work is, in addition to what is described above, to train how to synthesize and present limnological information.


To test the students’ ability to identify limnic organisms two species-knowledge quizzes are carried through individually. Knowledge of limnological theory and ability to treat and interpret data sets are controlled in an individual final written examination. In addition, project work and presentations make up a part of the final grading of the students.

Future perspectives

The course makes up a basis for continued advanced studies within the limnological field, for PhD studies and for a professional life as limnologist. Hence, passing BIOR17 Limnology is a pre-requisite for studying our additional courses. Water Management (BIOR66) and River Restoration in Europe (BIOR42) treat applied aspects of limnology. Those students who want a more profound knowledge of the ecology of inland waters, or who intend to make a Degree Project in Limnology or Water Management should study Aquatic Ecology (BIOR68) as it is a compulsory prerequisite.

Page Manager:

Study coordinator

Lotta Persmark
Study advisor
Education office, Ecology building

Telephone: +46 46-222 37 28
E-mail: Lotta [dot] Persmark [at] biol [dot] lu [dot] se

Course coordinator

Anders Persson
Senior lecturer
Aquatic ecology

Telephone: +46 46-222 84 27
E-mail: Anders [dot] Perssons [at] biol [dot] lu [dot] se

Course literature

You find all literature at our course literature page

Course period

The course is offered the first part of the autumn term. The medium of instruction is English.

Course evaluation

The latest evaluation (pdf)


Schedule (pdf; 41 kB)

Resit exam occasions

Resit exams