Plant Identification Skills

Module code: BS3019

Module co-ordinator: Dr Richard Gornall 

In this module you will study the major plant groups and their evolutionary relationships, and learn how to reliably identify the class to which any land plant belongs. We will compare the different types of identification key, and consider botanical terminology and the nature of diagnostic characters. By the end of this module you should be able to identify many of the common flowering plant families and species found wild in the British Isles

Successful completion of this module provides some of the training required to sit the exam for a professional qualification validated by the Botanical Society of the British Isles, which is fast becoming an industry standard.


  • 18 one-hour lectures
  • 18 hours of practicals
  • 3 one-hour tutorials

Please note the unusual timetabling of this module: one three-hour evening session per week, plus a total of three Saturdays.


  • Exam (80%)
  • Essay, 2,000 words (15%)
  • Lab reports (5%)