PLNT*6230 Colloquium in Plant Physiology and Biochemistry

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The following description is for the course offering in Winter 2018 and is subject to change. It is provided for information only. The course outline distributed to the class at the beginning of the semester describes the course content and delivery, and defines the methods and criteria to be used in establishing the final grades for the course.

An open discussion course designed to review and critically analyze contemporary issues in plant physiology and biochemistry. 


Teaching Assistant:

Credit Weight:


Course Level:

  • Graduate

Academic Department (or campus):

Plant Agriculture



Semester Offering:

  • Winter

Class Schedule and Location:

Please refer to WebAdvisor for class schedule and location.

Learning outcomes:

Upon completion of the course successfully;

  1. The students will increase their knowledge about the fundamental hormonal processes in plants. This may include linking various hormones and their action to the growth, yield, resistance to environmental signals and pathogens.
  2. They will enhance their knowledge about hormone/environmental cues, receptors and steps in the signal transduction processes.
  3. The students will be able to understand the logic behind the use of specific agrochemicals in agriculture, prevention of pathogen attack, enhancement in shelf life and quality of fruits etc.
  4. The students will be able to effectively communicate the gained knowledge to clients in the agri-food sector.

Lecture Content:

The course is intended to provide an introduction to the signal transduction processes that occur in response to hormones and environmental signals. Plants are exposed to various types of signals from within and without, and they have to provide an effective response that may involve growth processes, environmental mimicry, sensing by root system and the above ground organs, all involving an array of molecular and biochemical events. Cross-talk between the signals also occurs during signal transduction processes. Methods of instruction include class room discussions and seminars. Students are evaluated during their seminar presentations, term papers and participation in discussions.

Labs & Seminars:



The students will be required to provide a seminar based on the topic of their choice, pertaining to signal transduction processes. The students can select a seminar topic of their choice. The seminars will be ~ 40 minutes of duration with a question/answer period of 10-15 minutes for every seminar. The seminars will be evaluated and each seminar will carry 50% of the marks. The final examination is a term paper on a selected topic relevant to fruit and vegetable technology.

Seminar Topics- Examples: Hormonal signaling (auxins, gibberellins, cytokinins, ethylene), plant-pathogen interactions, pheromones, light perception and influence on growth and quality, plant stresses such as drought, cold, salinity etc.

Or, any other topics relevant to plant growth and development.

Course Assignments and Tests:

Assignment or Test Contribution to Final Mark (%) Learning Outcomes Assessed

Term Paper - A topic relevant to plant signal transduction. Due March 3, 2018. 
10% deduction for late submissions.     


1, 2, 4



 3, 4



 1, 2, 3, 4


Additional Notes

For the term paper, Students may choose a topic of their interest relevant to plant signal transduction processes. The term paper should be a high quality description of the topic, described in about a minimum of twenty pages, double spaced, including diagrams, figures, tables etc. This should be submitted by 3rd March to obtain an early evaluation of performance.

There will be a 10% deduction for late submissions.

Seminars will be assessed focusing on the content, clarity, quality of the slides, organization of slides, presentation style and relevance to the outcomes. Students are advised to consult with the instructor about the suitability of presentation well before the actual. Slides for the seminar can be submitted well before in order to obtain comments to improve the quality.

Final examination:

There is no final exam scheduled for this course.

Course Resources:

Required Texts:


Recommended Texts:

The students may use journals, and on line sources, for information regarding their specific topics. Journals such as Plant physiology, Plant cell, Plant Journal, Journal of Experimental Botany, Plant Physiology and Biochemistry are available through University subscription.

Lab Manual:

There is no lab manual for this course.

Other Resources: 


Field Trips:
Additional Costs:


Course Policies:

Grading Policies:

Late submissions will be subjected to a reduction of 10 % of the total marks. The final grades will be calculated from the marks obtained for the term report and evaluation of seminar presentation. Student participation in the course will be evaluated as individual attendance in the class, discussions during lectures and the seminars.

Course Policy on Group Work:

There are no group work projects.

Course Policy regarding use of electronic devices and recording of lectures:

Electronic recording of classes is expressly forbidden without consent of the instructor. When recordings are permitted they are solely for the use of the authorized student and may not be reproduced, or transmitted to others, without the express written consent of the instructor.

Other Course Information:

University Policies

Academic Consideration

When you find yourself unable to meet an in-course requirement because of illness or compassionate reasons, please advise the course instructor in writing, with your name, id#, and e-mail contact. See the academic calendar for information on regulations and procedures for Academic Consideration:

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The Academic Misconduct Policy is detailed in the University Calenders:


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