Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology
*New Concentration as of September 1, 2019*
Undergraduates with a major in the Biological Sciences can choose from several concentrations.
The following courses are required in order to receive a Degree in the Program in Biological Sciences with a concentration in Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology:
- Critical Topics in Ecology and Conservation (BIOL_SCI 339)Conceptual and theoretical framework within the field of ecology and conservation, covering climate change, habitat fragmentation, invasive species, genetics, evolution and ecology, among others. Prerequisites: BIOL_SCI 215 or ENV SCI 202
- Two of:
- Conservation Genetics (BIOL_332) Understanding the effects of climate change, habitat fragmentation, invasive species, pollution and other environmental factors impact the genetics of populations and how to conserve, manage, and restore genetic diversity. Prerequisites: BIOL SCI 215, BIOL SCI ENVR SCI 202, or BIOL SCI 341
- BIOL_SCI 333-0 Plant-Animal Interactions (1 Unit) - Plant-animal interactions, and their consequences for individuals, populations, ecological communities, and ecosystems. Examination of how these interactions are responding to ongoing global factors such as anthropogenic habitat destruction and climate change. Prerequisite: BIOL_SCI 330-0, BIOL_SCI 339-0, or ENVR_SCI 202.
- Spring Flora (BIOL_SCI 336) Field-based course focused on the evolution, ecology and identification of native and introduced plants in the Chicago Region. The course meets at the Chicago Botanic Garden. Prerequisites: BIOL SCI 215 or ENVR SCI 202
- Quantitative Methods in Ecology and Conservation (BIOL_SCI 337) Highly interactive course focused on analysis of ecological data and independent projects using the opensource software program R. Prerequisite: BIOL_SCI 215 or ENVR SCI 202, a course in statistics
- Anatomy of Vertebrates (BIOL_SCI 344) Vertebrate phylogeny illustrated via comparative morphology; anatomical/ functional and ontogenetic considerations; dissections. Prerequisites: BIOL SCI 215
- Field Ecology (BIOL_SCI 346) An intensive experience in field ecological research. Prerequisites: BIOL SCI 215; a course in statistics
- Conservation Biology (BIOL_SCI 347) Evolution, ecology, and conservation of patterns of biological diversity. Prerequisites: BIOL SCI 215
- Plant Community Ecology (BIOL-SCI 349) Processes that structure ecological communities. Students will gain an understanding of the history of community ecology as a field, and current methods used in community ecology research. Prerequisite: BIOL_SCI 215 or ENVR SCI 202
- Plant Evolution and Diversity Laboratory (BIOL_SCI 350) Introduction to the diversity and evolutionary history of land plants. Prerequisite: BIOL_SCI 215 or ENVR SCI 202
Through these courses, students will gain a detailed understanding of the interactions between ecology and evolution, and the impact of climate change, habitat fragmentation, invasive species and other factors on biodiversity and ecosystem health. Students will learn how to apply genetic, spatial, and ecological data to address practical issues like habitat restoration, natural areas management, and biodiversity conservation. A background in Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology allows students to have a foundational understanding of the natural world and to pursue careers in a wide variety of fields, including natural resources management, health, environmental policy, academia, and more.
This concentration involves collaboration and the opportunity to pursue research with scientists from the Chicago Botanic Garden.
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