Course code BIO223

BIO223 Evolutionary Biology

There may be changes to the course due to to corona restrictions. See Canvas and StudentWeb for info.

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Showing course contents for the educational year 2021 - 2022 .

Course responsible: Simen Rød Sandve
ECTS credits: 10
Faculty: Faculty of Biosciences
Teaching language: NO
(NO=norsk, EN=Engelsk)
Teaching exam periods:
This course has teaching/evaluation in Spring parallel.
Course frequency: Annually
First time: 2018H
Course contents:

Topics covered through lectures, group work, and exercises: 

  • Theoretical modell for how the evolutinoary forces, selection, drift, gene flow and mutation, drive genetic changes in populations and species.
  • How we can use genetic markers to study evolution of populations and species: genetic basis for local adaptations, adaptive evolution of protein coding genes, population divergence
  • Life history strategies and fitness
  • Speciation theory
  • Genome evolution: size and content
  • Evolution and developmental biology
Learning outcome:


  • can describe basic theory on how genetic variation is shaped by the four evolutionary forces: mutation, selection, drift, and gene flow
  • can describe how the evolutionary forces work together and result in biologic variation, including natural adaptation, both within and between species
  • can describe how genetic data can be used to study evolutionary and ecological questions


  • can use the above-mentioned theoretical knowledge to interpret genetic and/or other biological data in the context of evolutionary biology
  • can carry out simple analyses of DNA-sequence data, like constructing multiple sequence alignments and estimating phylogenetic trees

General competence

  • solid theoretical knowledge to do master-level courses within population genetics, molecular evolution, breeding, ecology, and nature management
Learning activities:
Lectures, compulsory group work, and student presentations.
Futuyma, 2017. Evolution. 4th Ed. Sinauer Ass. Inc. There could also be additional curriculum made available for certain topics.
Recommended prerequisites:
Mandatory activity:
Group work resulting in a written report.
Written examination, 3 hours, counts 100%. Compulsory assignments/group work must be approced before examination. 
Entrance requirements:
Special requirements in Science
Type of course:
A combination of group work and lectures.
Examination details: Written exam: A - E / F