Jul 14, 2024  
2020-2021 Graduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

BIO 5072 - Evolution

Credits: 4

This course stresses the relevance of evolution to all of biology and to real world problems. We discuss evolution not as a collection of facts, but as an ongoing research effort with the goal of understanding evolution as an observable process, especially as it relates to modern medicine and the treatment of disease. Emphasis is placed on the theoretical underpinnings of modern evolutionary biology (mutation, selection, migration, & drift) that produce evolutionary change. Additionally, students are introduced to a variety of analytical and technical skills used for studying evolution. Topics covered include population genetics, the theory of evolution by natural selection, concepts of fitness and adaptation, genetic and developmental bases of evolutionary change, modes of speciation, molecular evolution, principles of systematic biology, paleontology and macroevolutionary trends in evolution, the origins of life, and extinction, among others. My hope is that exposure to the tremendous diversity within this discipline will illustrate why evolution is viewed as the central theme unifying all of biology. Laboratory will consist of critical reviews (writing and discussion) of scientific literature as relevant to the discipline.
Three hours of lecture and one laboratory period per week

Statement Regarding Expectations/Requirements for Graduate Students: Additional assignments and responsibilities are required of the graduate students enrolled in the course. In addition to completing the assignments and tests outlined in the syllabus for undergrads, each graduate student will be assigned to lead multiple class discussions in lab pertaining to original research and review articles selected from the primary literature in Evolutionary Biology. In addition,
graduate students will be responsible for presenting/lecturing/teaching a subset of the foundational content covered in the lecture portion of the course and for acting as teaching assistants, coordinating and running review sessions in advance of each exam.
Prerequisite(s): BIO1027, BIO1028, BIO2010, and BIO 2018.
When Offered: Every other Fall