- Code BIOL6206
- Unit Value 6 units
- Offered by Biology Teaching and Learning Centre
- ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
- Course subject Biology
This course deals with patterns of biodiversity at large spatial and temporal scales, and the processes that have generated these patterns. Surprisingly, there are many fundamental questions about biodiversity that remain a matter of debate. For example, why are there so many species in the tropics? Did the extinction of dinosaurs pave the way for the rise of mammals? What causes one species to diverge into two? Equally surprisingly to many people, it is possible to test “big-picture” questions like these using a set of basic logical principles and analytical tools, and an ever-expanding database of molecular, geographic and ecological information on the world's species. The aim of this course is not to present you with facts to memorize, but to equip you with the skills to ask interesting questions about biodiversity, and develop creative and elegant ways to answer them. This is a challenging and rewarding course that requires students to think creatively, take charge of framing, investigating and answering questions, consider different viewpoints and come to their own opinions. The course is taught through workshops which give students a chance to explore and discuss ideas, so attendance of all face-to-face classes is an essential component of this course. The course emphasizes individual study and critical thinking.
This course is co-taught with undergraduate students but assessed separately.
On satisfying the requirements of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
1. Identify and describe the principles of phylogenetic reconstruction, including the selection of appropriate characters for generating phylogenetic hypotheses.
2. Understand the relationship between phylogenetics and taxonomy in sufficient depth to be able to construct a robust taxonomy on the basis of established phylogenies.
3. Describe the different mechanisms that maintain reproductive isolation between species, and explain the variety of speciation models that give rise to reproductive isolation.
4. Identify and describe the mechanisms leading to evolutionary radiation and divergence following the extablishment of reproductive barriers.
5. Describe the nature of biogeographical pattern from the local to the global scale, and identify the factors that led to these distributions.
6. Apply critical skills in hypothesis testing using a range of types of information, including the palaeontology, systematics, developmental biology, and molecular data.
7. Be able to access and navigate and interpret evolutionary databases and the scientific literature in order to present a coherent and critical analysis of competing views on evolutionary themes, either orally or in an essay.
Assessment will be based on:
- Four in-class tests (5% each) )LO 1-5)
- Tutorial Worksheet (20%) (LO 6,7)
- Paper review and essay (60%) (LO 6-7)
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WorkloadThree lectures per week and a total of three two-hour workshop classes per semester.
Requisite and Incompatibility
You will need to contact the Biology Teaching and Learning Centre to request a permission code to enrol in this course.
Bachelor degree with knowledge of biology, biodiversity or ecology and evolution
Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.
If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.
- Student Contribution Band:
- Band 2
- Unit value:
- 6 units
If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees. Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.
Offerings and Dates
|Class number||Class start date||Last day to enrol||Census date||Class end date||Mode Of Delivery|
|7934||22 Jul 2019||29 Jul 2019||31 Aug 2019||25 Oct 2019||In Person|