United Kingdom, London

Evolution and Sexual Selection

when 3 July 2017 - 21 July 2017
language English
duration 3 weeks
credits 7.5 ECTS
fee GBP 1850

The theory of evolution constitutes a powerful explanation of the interrelatedness and diversity of living organisms on planet Earth. This module aims to provide students with a full introduction to modern evolutionary theory and the forces of selection that drive evolutionary change.

The module will be enquiry-based and research-oriented. There will be a strong focus on sexual selection, mating systems and the roles of the quality and quantity of potential mates; using examples from a wide range of plant and animal systems. Key concepts will be introduced via mini-lectures and evaluated in small group sessions, through discussion of case studies.

In addition, students will be given the opportunity to design and conduct a laboratory study with a model species, and take part in an end of course symposium.

Course leader

Kevin Fowler is a Professor of Evolutionary Biology in the UCL Department of Genetics, Evolution and Environment. He organises and teaches a module in evolutionary genetics for second year Biological Sciences undergraduates.

Target group

This is a level one module (equivalent to first year undergraduate). No prior subject knowledge is required, but students are expected to have a keen interest in the area and a background in mathematics.

Course aim

Upon successful completion of this module, students will:

Have gained the ability to identify key aspects of the process of evolution and describe how varying selective forces drive evolutionary change;

Be familiar with the concept of sexual selection and have gained an understanding of the potential impact of variation in mate quality and quantity;

Have gained the ability to dissect complex behaviours into their constituent elements and to devise testable hypotheses about traits;

Have gained the ability to design and conduct an original laboratory study;

Have gained the confidence and skills necessary to present research findings to an audience.

Credits info

7.5 ECTS
7.5 ECTS / 4 US / 0.5 UCL

Fee info

GBP 1850: Students joining us for six weeks (two modules) will receive a tuition discount of £400.
GBP 1000: Students may select a room in our designated Summer School residence for a fee of £1000 for one three-week session. The residence is within 20 minutes walk of UCL and comprises of single occupancy bedrooms with private bathroom and shared, fully-equipped kitchen. Bedding, wifi, coin operated laundry and 24 hour security are provided.

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