Population Genetics

Course content

The amount of molecular genetic data (especially nucleotide sequences) has increased tremendously in recent years and is expected to explode as the next generation sequencing methods become standard tools. This has implications for a wide spectrum of biological disciplines spanning conservation genetics, molecular ecology, molecular medicine, genome research and evolutionary biology. The purpose of the course is to provide the students with knowledge about the principles of population genetics and phylogenetics and their applications in the diverse areas mentioned above. In addition, the course will train the students to choose suitable methods to analyze molecular genetic data.

Students with a limited background in bioinformatics will be offered additoinal exercises in bioinformatics skills necessary to handle the large amount of genomic data that are available today. This includes an introduction to the operating system Linux and the R environment for statistical computing.

Education

MSc Programme in Biochemistry
MSc Programme in Bioinformatics
MSc Programme in Biology
MSc Programme in Biology-Biotechnology

MSc Programme in Biology with a minor subject

Learning outcome

Knowledge:

By completing the course the student has been introduced to

  • Natural selection
  • Genetic drift and inbreeding
  • The neutral theory and molecular population genetics
  • Population structure
  • Evolutionary quantitative genetics
  • Phylogenetic inference (using distance, parsimony, maximum likelihood, and Bayesian methods)
  • Population genomics
  • Human population genetics
  • Applied aspects; depending on the participants’ interests


Skills:

By completing the course the student has learned how to analyse population genetic data and to explain how they have been influenced by:

  • Natural selection
  • Genetic drift and inbreeding
  • Population structure
  • Mutation


The student has obtained skills within the disciplines

  • Evolutionary genetics
  • Population genomics
  • Human population genetics


and will be able to communicate in writing the results of an analysis of a selected topic within the subject field.

Competences:

By completing the course the student can:

  • employ basic population genetic principles
  • discuss, put into perspective, and criticize original research papers in population genetics
  • choose the most suitable molecular methods to analyze a particular hypothesis
  • choose the most suitable analytical tools to analyze molecular genetic data
  • perform bioinformatics and statistical analyses of population genetic data, present the results, and put them into perspective

Lectures, seminars, group discussions, computer workshops, and student presentations of original research papers.

See Absalon.

Knowledge within biology and molecular biology disciplines is recommended.

ECTS
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written assignment
Oral examination, 20 minutes (no preparation)
Written assignment: The student must analyse population genetic data sets and write a scientific paper of about 10 pages (carried out as group work).
The written assignment must be handed in in the exam week.
Oral exam: The student presents the paper that has been handed in.
50:50 weight of the paper and oral exam.
Students must pass both exams to pass the overall exam.
Aid
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship
Criteria for exam assessment

The grade 12 is used when the student has an exhaustive knowledge about how to analyse population genetic data and to explain comprehensively how they have been influenced by various evolutionary forces.

Single subject courses (day)

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Exam
  • 16
  • Preparation
  • 81
  • Lectures
  • 27
  • Project work
  • 55
  • Theory exercises
  • 27
  • English
  • 206