AB-837 Seminars in Arctic Biology (2 ECTS)






Every semester, annually

Geology students presenting research posters. Photo: Eva Therese Jenssen / UNIS

Course Cost:None
Course Capacity Min/Max:5/12 students (AB-337/837 in total)
Language of instruction:English
Examination support material:Bilingual dictionary between English and mother tongue

Each student can register for the course four times, thus gaining up to 8 ECTS in total.

Course requirements

Enrollment in a relevant PhD programme. Only open for enrolled UNIS students.

Academic content

The course has two main foci; presentation of own work in progress and presentations and discussions of research papers (journal club). The aim of the first is to provide training in presentation of own research projects, either orally or by a poster. Each student presents her/his project (either the whole project or selected parts). The presentation is followed by discussion of the scientific content as well as technical presentation aspects, under the supervision of the seminar facilitator (academic staff).

In addition to providing insight into cutting-edge science within the field of Arctic biology, the “journal club” aims at training critical reading of scientific papers with respect to problem addressed, methods used, and interpretation of results. For the PhD students a greater emphasis will be on the scrutiny of research planning, data analysis and results interpretation as presented in the papers than for the students in the parallel course (AB-337). Each student presents one or more scientific papers of general interest (not too specialized), published in international peer-reviewed journals that have been approved by the seminar facilitator. The papers are distributed to the whole group one week before the presentation to enable the fellow students to prepare for the discussion.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing the course, the students will:


  • have insight into cutting-edge science within Arctic biology
  • be able to evaluate both new theory and methodology.


  • be able to critically read scientific papers, including scrutiny of research planning, data evaluation and interpretation
  • master and perform presentation techniques.

General competences

  • be able to perform critical thinking and constructive criticism and demonstrate the ability to take criticism
  • be able to communicate research by oral and written means
  • demonstrate competence in research ethics and autonomy in own research.

Learning activities

The course extends over 11 weeks (or less, on appointment with attending students), and is run in combination with AB-337.

The students will meet weekly with a responsible teacher/facilitator for double lecture hours (project presentation, paper presentation). Occasionally, lectures may be given on specific topics by the academic staff or guest lecturers.


  • Total lecture/seminar hours: 23 hours.

Compulsory learning activities

All compulsory learning activities must be followed in order to have them assessed.

  • Oral or poster presentation of own research.
  • Presentation of one or two papers of general interest from international journals and participation in discussion during all seminars.
  • At least 80% attendance at seminars is required.


Percentage of final grade
Performance during project and paper presentations, and participation in seminar discussions.100 %