Apiculture - Bees, Pollination and People

University College Dublin

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Apiculture - Bees, Pollination and People

  • Host University

    University College Dublin

  • Location

    Dublin, Ireland

  • Area of Study


  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • ECTS Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    This module examines the most important insect pollinators and gives an insight into their taxonomy, biology and ecological role. The focus will be on bumble bees, solitary bees and honey bees. It will give you an understanding of the variation in their biology and provide you with knowledge of specific pollinator species. The module will also identify human activities that may improve or impair survival of pollinating insects. Emphasis is placed on the honey bee because of its importance, both as a honey producer and as a pollinator of cultivated crops. Beekeeping is described in some detail with practical demonstrations of management, and every student will have an opportunity to handle honeybee colonies in an apiary.
    Apiary practical sessions will be arranged for groups of 10 at a time (protective clothing provided), depending on student and staff availability. The YouTube video project will also be arranged in small groups and will make use of student?s own mobile phone video recorders.
    The lectures will be delivered by UCD staff as well as invited speakers, who will cover topics such as pollinator ecology (bumblebees, honey bees and solitary bees), pests and diseases of honeybees and other pollinators. These guest lecturers will come from backgrounds such as the National Biodiversity Data Centre, Crop Policy Production and Safety Division of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, the Teagasc Bee Disease Diagnostic Service at Oak Park and the Federation of Irish Beekeepers Associations.
    Topics covered will include:
    • Evolutionary history, biology and taxonomy of pollinating Hymenoptera;
    • Evolution of sociality and the super-organism concept;
    • Pollination biology and bee botany;
    • The organisation of honey bee colonies including sex determination and reproduction;
    • Threats to pollinating insects (including chemicals, parasites and diseases);
    • The importance of beekeeping and beekeeping practices to human society ? past and present;
    • Practical apiculture (colony management/manipulation, honey production, colony reproduction, queen rearing);
    • Products and ecosystem services of pollinators.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) credits are converted to semester credits/quarter units differently among U.S. universities. Students should confirm the conversion scale used at their home university when determining credit transfer.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.


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