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Professor Mark Davies

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Emeritus Professor of Bioscience

I am interested in how physiology and behaviour can impact on system dynamics (especially those vulnerable to climate change effects), including understanding the evolution of co-operative behaviours and making use of agent-based computational techniques. I also have a research interest in higher education, particularly assessment and I am a National Teaching Fellow.

Teaching and supervision

I supervise doctoral students across various enviornmental science disciplines, typically related to health. and in higher education.


Much of my work concerns biological adaptations to an extreme environment: tropical rocky shores, particularly the upper shore where rock temperatures regularly exceed 60oC. I use biological computation methods to model behaviour in response to stress and unravel the basis of decision-making processes.

Latterly I have become interested in how students, academic staff and the ‘elite’ in higher education understand assessment. Research here has established that ‘assessment’, a concept used widely in all education sectors is very poorly understood. There is little commonality between and within groups of students, academic staff, and academic developers operating at a national level. If staff don’t sing with a single voice on assessment, how can we expect our students to understand what we expect from them?


Number of items: 33.


Terence, P T Ng, Lau, Sarah L Y, Davies, Mark, Stafford, Richard, Seuront, Laurent, Hutchinson, Neil, Hui, Tommy T Y and Williams, Gray A (2021) Behavioral repertoire of high-shore littorinid snails reveals novel adaptations to an extreme environment. Ecology and Evolution. ISSN 2045-7758

Cormack, Sophie H., Eagle, Laurence A. and Davies, Mark S. (2020) A large-scale test of the relationship between procrastination and performance using learning analytics. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 45 (7). pp. 1046-1059. ISSN 0260-2938

Bist, Dinesh, Smith, Peter and Davies, Mark (2019) A qualitative investigation into the reasons for low academic achievement of international students in a private college. International Journal of Higher Education Management, 6 (1). pp. 47-66. ISSN 2059-660X EISSN 2059-6618

Ng, Terence P T, Rolán-Alvarez, Emilio, Dahlén, Sara Saltin and Davies, Mark (2019) The causal relationship between sexual selection and sexual size dimorphism in marine gastropods. Animal Behaviour, 148. pp. 53-62. ISSN 0003-3472

Davies, Mark and Taras, Maddalena (2018) Coherence and disparity in assessment literacies among HE staff. London Review of Education, 16 (3). pp. 474-490. ISSN 1474-8479

Vasireddy, Lakshmi, Bingle, Lewis and Davies, Mark (2018) Antimicrobial activity of essential oils against multidrug-resistant clinical isolates of the Burkholderia cepacia complex. PLoS ONE.

Taras, Maddalena and Davies, Mark (2017) Assessment beliefs of higher education staff developers. London Review of Education, 13 (1). pp. 126-140. ISSN 1474-8460

Ng, T. P. T., Lau, S. L. Y., Seuront, L., Davies, Mark, Stafford, R., Marshall, D. J. and Williams, G. A. (2017) Linking behaviour and climate change in intertidal ectotherms: insights from littorinid snails. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 492. pp. 121-131. ISSN 0022-0981

Ng, T.P.T., Williams, G.A., Davies, Mark, Stafford, R. and Rolán-Alvarez, E. (2016) Sampling scale can cause bias in positive assortative mating estimates: The first evidence in two intertidal snails. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 119 (2). pp. 414-419. ISSN 0024-4066

Ng, T.P.T, Davies, Mark, Stafford, R. and Williams, G.A. (2016) Fighting for mates: the importance of individual size in mating contests in rocky shore littorinids. Marine Biology, 163 (50). ISSN 0025-3162

Davies, Mark and Taras, Maddalena (2016) A comparison of assessment beliefs of science and education lecturers in a University. REMIE: Multidisciplinary Journal of Education Research, 6 (1). pp. 77-99. ISSN 2014-2862

Stafford, Richard, NG, Terence, Williams, Gray and Davies, Mark (2014) A biologically relevant rapid quantification of physical and biologicalstress profiles on rocky shores. Ecological Informatics, 25. pp. 43-48. ISSN 1574-9541

Hayes, Catherine and Davies, Mark (2014) A phenomenological evaluation of a hybrid model of problem based learning for multidisciplinary healthcare. International Journal of Learning Development in Higher Education, 7. pp. 1-21. ISSN 1759-667X

Taras, Maddalena and Davies, Mark (2014) Perceptions and realities in assessment definiations and uses. International Research in Education - Macrothink Institute, 2 (1). pp. 93-102. ISSN 2327-5499

Ng, TBT, Saltin, SH, Davies, Mark, Johannesson, K, Stafford, R and Williams, GA (2013) Snails and their trails: the multiple functions of trail following in gastropods. Biological Reviews, 88 (3). pp. 683-700. ISSN 1464-7931

Taras, Maddalena and Davies, Mark (2013) Perceptions and realities in the functions and processes of assessment. Active Learning in Higher Education, 14 (1). pp. 1-11. ISSN 1469-7874

Stafford, Richard, Williams, Gray A and Davies, Mark (2012) Cheats in a cooperative behaviour? Behavioural differences and breakdown of cooperative behaviour in aggregating, intertidal littorinids (Mollusca). Marine Ecology, 33 (1). pp. 66-74. ISSN 0173-9565

Stafford, Richard, Williams, Gray A and Davies, Mark (2011) Robustness of Self-Organised Systems to Changes in Behaviour: An Example from Real and Simulated Self-Organised Snail Aggregations. PLoS ONE, 6 (7). ISSN 1932-6203

Stafford, Richard, Goodenough, Anne E and Davies, Mark (2010) Assessing the effectiveness of a computer simulation for teaching ecological experimental design. Bioscience Education, 15 (art. 1). ISSN 1479-7860

Stafford, Richard and Davies, Mark (2009) Robustness of Self-Organised Systems to Changes in Individual Level Behaviour: An Example from Real and Simulated Self-Organised Snail Aggregations. Nature Precedings.

Stafford, Richard, Davies, Mark and Williams, Gray A (2008) Parameterization and Prediction of Community Interaction Models Using Stable-State Assumptions and Computational Techniques: an Example from the High Rocky Intertidal. The Biological Bulletin, 215 (2). pp. 155-163. ISSN 0006-3185

Stafford, Richard, Davies, Mark and Williams, Gray A (2008) Self-Organization of Intertidal Snails Facilitates Evolution of Aggregation Behavior. Artificial Life, 14 (4). pp. 409-423. ISSN 1064-5462

Stafford, Richard, Williams, Gray A and Davies, Mark (2007) Computer simulations of high shore littorinids predict small-scale spatial and temporal distribution patterns on real rocky shores. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 342. pp. 151-161. ISSN 01718630

Blackwell, Janine and Davies, Mark (2007) Energy saving through trail following in a marine snail. Proceedings of The Royal Society B Biological Sciences, 274 (1614). pp. 1233-1236. ISSN 09628452

Edwards, M, Williams, Gray A and Davies, Mark (2006) Movement patterns of the limpet Cellana grata (Gould) observed over a continuous period through a changing tidal regime. Marine Biology, 149 (4). pp. 775-787. ISSN 00253162

Norris, W and Davies, Mark (2004) Vibration as a possible explanation for putative electromagnetic field effects: a case study on marine diatoms. International Journal of Radiation Biology, 80 (10). pp. 709-718. ISSN 09553002

Cherrill, Andrew, Holmes, Seb, Sturgess, Claire and Davies, Mark (2001) Shell wiping in Calliostoma zizphinum: the use of pedal mucus as a provendering agent and its contribution to energetic requirements. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 212. pp. 171-181. ISSN 0171-8630

Book Section

Schuster, Hannah, Davies, Mark, Hawkins, Stephen. J, Moschella, Paula.S, Murphy, Richard. J, Thompson, Richard.C and Underwood, A.J. (2019) Biofilms in Intertidal Habitats. In: Interactions in the Marine Benthos. Systematics Association Special Volume Series, 87 . Cambridge University Press, United Kingdom, pp. 448-473. ISBN 9781108416085

Hawkins, Stephen.J, Pack, Kathryn. E, Firth, Louise.B, Mieszkowska, Nova, Evans, Ally. J, Martins, Gustavo. M, Aberg, Per, Adams, Leonie. C, Arenas, Francisco, Boaventura, Diana. M, Bohn, Katrin, Borges, Deborah. G, Castro, Joau. J, Coleman, Ross. A, Crowe, Tasman. P, Cruz, Teresa, Davies, Mark, Epstein, Graham, Faria, Joao, Ferreira, Joao. G, Frost, Natalie. J, Griffin, John. N, Hanley, ME, Herbert, Roger. J.H., Hyder, Kieran, Johnson, Mark.P, Lima, Fernando.P, Masterson-Algar, Patricia, Moore, Pippa.J, Moschella, Paula.S, Notman, Gillian.M, Pannacciulli, Federica.G, Ribeiro, Pedro.A, Santos, Antonio.M, Silva, Anna.C.F, Skov, Martin.W, Sugden, Heather, Vale, Maria, Wangkulangkul, Kringpaka, Wort, Edward.J.G, Thompson, Richard.C, Hartnoll, Richard.G, Burrows, Michael.T and Jenkins, Stuart.R (2019) The Intertidal Zone of the North-East Atlantic Region. In: Interactions in the Marine Benthos: Global Patterns and Processes. Systematics Association Special Volume Series, 87 . Cambridge University Press, United Kingdom, pp. 7-46. ISBN 9781108416085

Conference or Workshop Item

Taras, Maddalena and Davies, Mark (2018) Assessment Literacies and student inclusion: key to supporting good practice, innovation, and collaboration. In: Three Rivers Conference, 6 Jul 2018, Newcastle University. (Unpublished)

Hayes, Catherine and Davies, Mark (2015) A phenomenological evaluation of a hybrid model of problem based learning for multidisciplinary healthcare. In: 8th Annual NE Universities (3 Rivers Consortium) Regional Learning and Teaching Conference, 27 Mar 2015, University of Sunderland.

Taras, Maddalena and Davies, Mark (2013) Students as Partners or Pawns in Assessment? In: 3 Rivers NE T&L Conference, Newcastle University, 19 Mar 2013, Newcastle University. (Unpublished)

Davies, Mark (2008) Student Retention: an overview. Reflections on the individual practice theme. In: Proceedings of Strategies for Student Retention (The STAR Conference).

This list was generated on Sat Apr 13 22:59:05 2024 BST.

  • Climate change biology
  • Health effects of anthropogenic environmental factors
  • Assessment in Higher Education
  • National Teaching Fellow 
    Associate Editor, Journal of Molluscan Studies

  • Evaluator, European Union Framework Programme 7 and Horizon 2020
    Evaluator for many national research bodies in Europe
    Accreditor, and Principal Fellow, The Higher Education Academy
    Reviewer/Auditor, The Quality Assurance Agency
    Review Chair and reviewer for national quality bodies in, for example, Albania, Hong Kong, Lithuania, Macao, Saudi Arabia

  • Membership of external bodies 
    President and Councillor, the Malacological Society of London (2009-2012) 
    Council member, Unitas Malacologica (2010-2016) 
    Member, Marine Biological Association of the UK
    Member, The Ray Society

Last updated 28 February 2024