82428 - Phytogeography

Course Unit Page

  • Teacher Juri Nascimbene

  • Credits 6

  • SSD BIO/03

  • Teaching Mode Traditional lectures

  • Language Italian

  • Campus of Bologna

  • Degree Programme First cycle degree programme (L) in Natural Sciences (cod. 5823)


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Affordable and clean energy Responsible consumption and production Climate Action Life on land

Academic Year 2022/2023

Learning outcomes

At the end of the module, the student has basic knowledge in relation to the geographical distribution of plants, to vegetation dynamics and the main anthropogenic drivers. The student will get applicative skills in the floristic detection of the environment based on the chorological and biological spectrum of the flora. He will get the bases for a multitaxon approach to the study of vegetation including vascular plants, bryophytes and lichens.

Course contents

Introduction to the course and to biogeography

General patterns of biodiversity (latitudinal and altitudinal) and mechanisms that determine them

Geographic distribution of the species

Biogeographic regions and floristic kingdoms

Corotypes of Italian flora with particular emphasis on endemics and alien species

Flora of Emilia Romagna (corotypes, endemisms, conservation, database)

Functional aspects: life forms

Physionomic and syntassonomic classification of vegetation

Vegetation dynamics (fluctuations, primary and secondary successions)

Anthropogenic impacts on flora and vegetation: agriculture, forest management, and climate change

Biogeographic regions, vegetation and macro-categories of habitats in Italy (outline)

Morphology, ecology and distribution of lichens and bryophytes

Herbaria as a tool for botanical research

Use of interactive tools for the identification of plant organisms

Laboratories for the identification of plants, lichens and bryophytes and preparation of an herbarium collection (speciems of at least 100 species)

Field excursion aimed at the observation of different vegetation types and the identification typical species for each vegetation type


The teacher will provide the pdf files of scientific articles focused on the topics of each lesson, as well as the pdf of each lesson once the topic is completed.

will be provided as pdf

Strasburger, (edizioni più recenti) - Trattato di Botanica

Pignatti S., 1994 - Ecologia del paesaggio

Blasi & Biondi - La Flora in Italia. Pdf Ministero Ambiente

Teaching methods

The teaching is based on lectures, laboratory activities for the identification of vascular plants, lichens and bryophytes and on the realization of a two-days field excursion aimed at the observation of different vegetation types and their most typical species along natural and anthropogenic gradients.

These three components are integrated in a functional way trying to stimulate the participation of students and the interaction between them and the teacher, thus creating interest in the topics covered and conditions for active and serene participation.

The preparation of the herbarium is proposed to the students as an opportunity to facilitate the knowledge, from an ecological and distributional perspective, of the most common and typical species of different vegetation types.

To further stimulate students' interest, seminars are held during the course that are held by leading experts on topics closely related to the program. Seminars are also conceived as an opportunity for discussion and comparison.

As far as the bibligraphic sources supporting the study are concerned, in addition to indicating some texts in which the student can find the main concepts proposed in the lesson, for each lesson the original sources on which the lesson itself is based will be provided as pdf of the scientific references used to develop a given topic.

Finally, the practical activities are supported by the figure of a classroom tutor who assists the teacher helping the students in the phases of species identification and preparation of the herbarium.

In consideration of the types of activities and teaching methods adopted, the attendance of this training activity requires the performance of all students of modules 1 and 2 in e-learning mode and participation in module 3 of specific training on safety and health in the places of study. Information on dates and methods of attendance of module 3 can be consulted in the specific section of the degree program website.

Assessment methods

The learning level will be verified during an oral test contextual to the Plant Phylogenesis module.

The test includes the ecological-distributional discussion of the herbarium specimens, and the analysis of the topics covered during the course, stimulating the reasoning and the link between the topics.

The final grade is the mean value of the two parts that make up the exam (Fitogeografia and Filogenesi Vegetale). The achievement of a complete, organic and reasoned vision of the topics, together with the ability to express them appropriately, will be evaluated with marks of excellence. The knowledge mostly mechanical and mnemonic as well as little depth, and a capacity for expression not always appropriate, will lead to discrete evaluations. Minimal knowledge and inappropriate language will lead to sufficient evaluations. Serious gaps in knowledge and expression will lead to insufficient evaluations.

The average duration of the exam is 20 minutes.

Being an Integrated Course, it should be noted that the recording teacher is Prof. Lucia Conte

Teaching tools

Two days field excursion


Practical activities

Ecological-distributional herbarium

Analysis of original sources

Office hours

See the website of Juri Nascimbene