• Evolutionary Biology

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Teaching

Our courses in the Electronic Course Catalogue

Below you will find an overview of the wide range of seminars, courses and research opportunities we offer in the Department of Evolutionary Biology. We contribute to teaching throughout the relevant Bachelor and Master programmes, and hope you will be able to find something suitable for you whatever the stage of your studies here in Bielefeld.

In the Evolution Seminar, we discuss recent findings in evolutionary biology and evolutionary ecology. These typically come from current projects and research modules, Bachelor and Master theses, as well as PhD dissertations conducted in the Department. Furthermore, collaboration partners and guests from other universities also regularly visit to present their work. This informal seminar offers a great opportunity to gain an insight into active research in our department and beyond, and students at all levels are always welcome to attend. Talks are given in English, but presentation of student projects and participation in the discussion in German is always possible. A continuously updated overview over the program can be found on the main page. If you are interested in getting weekly invitations on the day before the seminar please forward your email address to Dr. Tim Schmoll (tim.schmoll@uni-bielefeld.de). Credit points can be earned, for example by writing an essay on a selected presentation of the seminar series.

For second-year or third-year Bachelor students we offer a special module "Key Concepts in Evolutionary Ecology" (Theoretische Grundlagen der evolutionären Ökologie), within which students develop a deeper understanding of some selected aspects of current evolutionary research. Topics that we cover typically include natural and sexual selection, life-history evolution, evolutionary conflicts and speciation. The module will shed light on the diversity of ideas and approaches developed for understanding fundamental questions in evolutionary biology. Among other things, you will learn how to critically read, evaluate and discuss the primary literature.

Module offered in summer semester and delivered partly in German and partly in English.

 

During the third year of the Bachelor programme, we are happy to host you if you want to conduct a project module in our department. We offer exciting research projects on a variety of different topics and using a range of different model systems (e.g. birds, insects, flatworms). Results may be presented as a short talk in the Evolution Seminar or as a scientific poster presentation. For further details, please visit the student projects page or the webpages of individual staff members to get an overview of our research, and then contact the member of staff you would be interested in working with directly.

Module offered continuously as agreed upon with the chosen supervisor(s).

 

In the first year of the Master programme Behaviour: From Neural Mechanisms to Evolution, we run the master module E: Evolution of Behaviour. During this module, you will learn to understand behaviour from an evolutionary perspective. Following introductory lectures, you will design compact research projects using insects as model organisms. Experiments are then conducted on a two-week field trip to Greece that forms the middle part of the module. On the return to Bielefeld, the results of the projects are analysed and presented in the form of an oral presentation and a scientific paper.

Module offered in summer semester and delivered in English.

 

In the second year of the Master programme, we are happy to host Master students who want to conduct a research module in our department. We offer exciting research projects on a variety of different topics and using a range of different model systems (e.g. birds, insects, flatworms). Projects will be explore novel aspects of current research in our department and will therefore directly contribute to a better understanding of evolutionary processes. For further details, please visit the student projects page or the webpages of individual staff members to get an overview of our research, and then contact the member of staff you would be interested in working with directly.

Module offered continuously as agreed upon with the chosen supervisor(s).

 

The Stats Club is designed as a regular meeting for discussing and dissecting applied biostatistical problems. It offers an on-demand, goal-orientated, hands-on approach to experimental design and statistical treatment of ecological & evolutionary data from the daily scientific work of the participants. Any questions, arising either before or after experiments are carried out, can be handed in and will be disseminated among participants before meetings take place. This will provide background for a joint discussion of the issue, fuelling insight by the collective statistical expertise of all participants. The Stats Club is particularly suitable if you are planning or analysing your own experiments during project, research and master modules or Bachelor and Master theses. If you are interested in getting weekly invitations and materials on the day before the Club meets please forward your email address to Dr. Tim Schmoll (tim.schmoll@uni-bielefeld.de). Credit points will be granted for example for writing an essay on a selected presentation or statistical problem discussed in the Club.

Every Tuesday during semester time at 9.15 in VHF 211

 

For first-year Bachelor students we offer an introduction to evolutionary biology within the basic module Biologie II. During these sessions, you will become acquainted with central concepts such as selection, allelic frequency change, and phylogenies. The complementary practical parts are designed to enable active learning, and you are encouraged to work hands-on and self-dependently on a few instructive exercises.

Module offered in summer semester and delivered in German.

 

For second-year Bachelor students we offer a more thorough introduction to evolutionary thinking within the advanced module Verhalten und neuronale Mechanismen. The evolutionary part of this module covers a selected range of fundamental topics, from the logic of evolutionary explanations, to mechanisms of microevolution, through to understanding phylogenetic relationships between taxa. The sessions are interactive and include practical parts. We particularly encourage discussions among participants that will familiarize you with the basic evolutionary terms, concepts and methods and how they can be applied to the evolution of behaviour and biodiversity in general. There are currently different variants of the advanced module, which differ in the number of session on evolutionary topics.

Module offered in winter semester and delivered in German.

 


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