Course code BIO223

BIO223 Population Genetics and Molecular Ecology

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Showing course contents for the educational year starting in 2014 .

Course responsible: Siri Fjellheim, Odd Arne Rognli
Teachers: Siri Fjellheim
ECTS credits: 5
Faculty: Department of Plant Sciences
Teaching language: EN, NO
(NO=norsk, EN=Engelsk)
Limits of class size:
Teaching exam periods:
This course starts in Spring parallel. This course has teaching/evaluation in Spring parallel.
Course frequency: <p>Annually</p><p><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/></p>
First time: 2013H
Preferential right:
Course contents:

Topics that will be covered through lectures and practicals are: genetic variation, molecular markers and their properties, quantification of genetic diversity, effective population size, genetic drift and natural selection, subpopulations and gene flow, genetic distance, F-statistics, forces that determine the amount of gene flow, Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL) analyses, phylogeography, conservation genetics.

Learning outcome:

The students shall understand the theoretical foundation for population genetics and how evolutionary forces are shaping the genetic variation within and between populations. An important goal is to understand the properties of molecular markers, what kind of information they give and how they can be applied in evolutionary and ecological studies. The course shall give the students generic knowledge applicable in studies of all kinds of organisms. Molecular ecology seeks to understand adaptation and changes in populations from a molecular perspective by linking variation at the DNA level with phenotypic observations. Through practical training the students will learn how large amounts of next-generation DNA sequencing data are analyzed and used to enhance our understanding of adaptation in natural populations (ecogenomics) and genotype-phenotype associations (breeding populations). The course will provide the students with solid theoretical and conceptual knowledge as a background for attending master courses in population genetics and evolution, molecular genome analyses, bioinformatics, plant breeding, animal breeding and nature management.

Learning activities:

Engelsk:Lectures. Compulsory assignments/computer exercises based on analyses of real data. Colloquiums organized by students.

Teaching support:

Fronter will be used actively to distribute all teaching materials. PhD students will assist during the data analyses/assignement work. Fixed times for access of students to teachers will be agreed based on the needs.


Selected chapters from the textbook: Freeland, Kirk, Petersen: Molecular Ecology, 2nd ed. 2011 plus selected articles.


BIO120 - Genetics introductory course; MATH100 - Mathematics introductory course; STAT100 - Statistics introductory course

Recommended prerequisites:
Mandatory activity:

Hand-in a given number of assignments.


Final written exam counts 100%. Compulsory assignments must be passed before final exam can be taken.

Nominal workload:

Lectures: 24 hours; Assignments/data analyses: 20 hours; Preparations, homework, self study and colloquims: 106 hours.

Entrance requirements:

Special requirements in Science

Reduction of credits:
Type of course:

Engelsk:Lectures: 2 hours per week for 12 weeks. Assignments/data analyses: 2 hours per week for 10 weeks.


External examiner participates in controlling exam questions and grading

Examination details: One written exam: A - E / Ikke bestått