BIOL334-23S2 (C) Semester Two 2023

Evolutionary Genetics and Genomics

15 points

Details:
Start Date: Monday, 17 July 2023
End Date: Sunday, 12 November 2023
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Sunday, 30 July 2023
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Sunday, 1 October 2023

Description

BIOL334 is an advanced course that builds on the conceptual frameworks developed in the pre-requisite course BIOL271. It provides in-depth coverage across the breadth of evolutionary genetics and genomics with an emphasis on conservation genetics/genomics, epigenetics, evolution and development (evo-devo), and genomic interactions with the environment.

Course Goals
To provide students with an advanced understanding of evolutionary genetics and genomics including
the genetic/genomic consequences of small population size, and mechanisms of evolution from a genomics perspective. This course is intended for anyone with an interest in both fundamental and applied research, or who wishes to gain bioinformatic experience working with large genetic and genomic data sets. Te Tiriti o Waitangi (The Treaty of Waitangi) is embedded in the course, and it is also particularly well suited for anyone who plans to pursue a career in genetics or genomics that is responsive to the needs and aspirations of Indigenous communities.

Learning Outcomes

  • As a student in this course, I will develop the ability to:
  • Explain the difference between conservation genetics and conservation genomics (assessment task: pre-lecture quizzes and midcourse test).
    Related graduate attributes: GP1, GP3, GP5
  • Explain how genomic data may better inform the conservation management of threatened species (assessment tasks: pre-lecture quizzes and midcourse test).
    Related graduate attributes: GP1, GP2, GP3, GP5
  • Explain how embedding kaupapa Māori principles contextualises genomic research of threatened taonga (treasured) species in Aotearoa New Zealand (assessment tasks: conservation genomics tutorials and midcourse test).
    Related graduate attributes: GP1, GP2, GP3, GP5
  • Explain how the environment can interact with the genome to alter genome output and why might these processes influence evolution (assessment tasks: pre-lecture quizzes and final exam).
    Related graduate attributes: GP1, GP2, GP5
  • Explain how the genome is organised at the 3D level, and how genome interactions can contribute to genomic changes that may influence evolution (assessment tasks: pre-lecture quizzes and final exam).
    Analyse differential gene expression in response to environmental change (assessment tasks: genomic mechanisms tutorials and final exam).
    Related graduate attributes: GP1, GP2, GP5

    Transferable Skills

    As a student in this course, I will develop the following skills:
  • Synthesising information. In everyday life and in many job situations you will be required to read information from different sources, construct your own understanding and shape your own viewpoint. This will developed during discussions of recent research papers during lectures, including the discussion of the essential elements of research papers during problem-based lectures and tutorials.
    Related graduate attributes: GP1, GP2, GP3, GP5
  • Building bicultural competence and confidence. Important for research in Aotearoa New Zealand, as well as in a number of private-sector and public-sector organisations. This skill will be developed during discussions of Te Tiriti o Waitangi (The Treaty of Waitangi) in the context of genomics research of taonga (treasured) species during lectures, including problem-based lectures, and tutorials.
    Related graduate attributes: GP1, GP2, GP3, GP5
  • Analysing and interpreting data. Important for research, as well as in a number of private-sector and public-sector organisations. This skill will be developed when we assist you to analyse and interpret genetic and genomic data in tutorials.
    Related graduate attributes: GP1, GP2, GP3, GP5

    Graduate Profile | Āhuatanga Taura
    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop these UC Graduate Attributes (GP) and Kaupapa (K) (www.canterbury.ac.nz/study/graduate- profile/students/what-are-the-graduate-attributes/):
     GP1 Critically competent in a core academic discipline.
     GP2 Employable, innovative and enterprising.
     GP3 Biculturally competent and confident: K1 A process of self-reflection on the nature of ‘knowledge’ and ‘norms’ K3 Traditional and contemporary realities of Māori society e.g. tikanga and kawa, te reo Māori K7 Application of bicultural competence and confidence in a chosen discipline and career
     GP5 Globally aware

Prerequisites

Restrictions

BIOL330

Timetable 2023

Students must attend one activity from each section.

Lecture A
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Thursday 16:00 - 17:00 Jack Erskine 441
24 Jul - 27 Aug
11 Sep - 22 Oct
Lecture B
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Monday 11:00 - 12:00 Jack Erskine 242
24 Jul - 27 Aug
11 Sep - 22 Oct
Lecture C
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Tuesday 13:00 - 14:00 Jack Erskine 446
24 Jul - 6 Aug
Computer Lab A
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Wednesday 14:00 - 16:00 Ernest Rutherford 464 Computer Lab
16 Oct - 22 Oct
Tutorial A
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Wednesday 13:00 - 15:00 Jack Erskine 101
7 Aug - 27 Aug
2 Oct - 15 Oct

Timetable Note

Course content
The following is a brief outline of the topics that will be covered by the course, and the lecturers involved in each of the sections. See LEARN for details.

Conservation genomics, Tammy Steeves and Axel Moehrenschlager – 12 lectures (term 3)
These lectures and tutorials will focus on the use of genetic/genomic data to inform the survival and recovery of threatened species with an emphasis on conservation translocations. Topics will include the difference between conservation genetics and conservation genomics, including the genetic and genomic consequences of small population size, intra- and interspecific hybridization and the resolution of taxonomic uncertainties. We will also explore cultural considerations associated with the generation, storage, access and use of genetic/genomic data for research on threatened taonga (treasured) species in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Genomic mechanisms, Amy Osborne – 12 lectures (term 4)
These lectures and tutorials will focus on the genomic mechanisms that may drive evolutionary processes. Topics will include epigenetics (methylation and gene expression) phenotypic plasticity at the molecular level, the predictive adaptive response hypothesis, the developmental origins of health and disease, the interaction between the environment and the genome, 3D genome structure and organisation, and genome regulation. We will specifically address different genomic processes and genome outputs, and how differences within these might drive evolution.

Lecture timetable:
Lecture 1 - International, national, local context for genetic and genomic research involving culturally significant species - TS
Lecture 2 - International, national, local context for genetic and genomic research involving culturally significant species - TS
Lecture 3 - Introduction to conservation translocations - TS/AM
Lecture 4 - Re-imagining conservation translocations - TS/AM
Lecture 5 - Genetics/genomics of small populations - TS
Lecture 6 - Genetics/genomics of small populations - TS/AM
Lecture 7 - Intraspecific hybridisation - TS
Lecture 8 - Intraspecific hybridisation - TS/AM
Lecture 9 - Interspecific hybridisation - TS
Lecture 10 - Interspecific hybridisation - TS/AM
Lecture 11 - Taxonomic uncertainties - TS
Lecture 12 - Taxonomic uncertainties- -TS/AM
Lecture 13 - Evolution and development - AO
Lecture 14 - Evolution of novelty- -AO
Lecture 15 - PBL - AO
Lecture 16 - Epigenetics - AO
Lecture 17 - Developmental Origins of Health and Disease - AO
Lecture 18 - PBL - AO
Lecture 19 - Transgenerational epigenetic inheritance - AO
Lecture 20 - Evolutionary ecology - AO
Lecture 21 - PBL - AO
Lecture 22 - 3D chromosome organisation - AO
Lecture 23 - PBL - AO
Lecture 24 - Refresher session - AO

Course Coordinator / Lecturer

Amy Osborne

Lecturer

Tammy Steeves

Guest Lecturer

Dr Axel Moehrenschlager, (Visiting Erskine Fellow)

Assessment

Assessment Due Date Percentage 
Final Exam 30%
Conservation genomics quizzes 5%
Genomic mechanisms quizzes 5%
Midcourse Test 30%
Conservation genomics tutorial assessment 15%
Genomic mechanisms tutorial assessment 15%

Additional Course Outline Information

Notes

Feedback from Course Surveys

Student ratings:                                                                                                                   2017       2014
1. Course materials helped me to understand what was required to succeed          4.3        n/a
2. Course organisation helped me learn (2017)/Course well organised (2014)          4.4        4.7
3. Course workload appropriate                                                                                         4.4        4.7
4. Course assessments appropriate                                                                                   4.5        n/a
5. Where I sought feedback, I found it helpful                                                                  4.2        n/a

The following questions were raised in online course surveys completed by previous students. Responses were collated by the course coordinator and common responses scored.

Which aspects of this course were most positive?
 Super Enjoyable Course. Had so much fun this semester in the course.
 The most helpful aspects were the well organised full content uploaded to learn – thus if I was unable to attend a lecture I was able to still listen to the lectures, view the powerpoint slides, and access the articles etc. recommended for further reading very easily.
 Pre lecture quizzes.
 Lectures and tutorials.
 Feedback provided from the pre lecture quizzes and from the tutorial work.
 All the practice questions.
 Tutorials and review lectures to go over calculations and practice exam questions.

How could this course be enhanced to assist your learning?
 The course was so well organised and delivered, it doesn’t need any changes. Thanks 
 Addition of another form of assessment, adding a midterm assessment. We added a midcourse test for assess term 3 content.

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $951.00

International fee $4,750.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

Minimum enrolments

This course will not be offered if fewer than 10 people apply to enrol.

For further information see School of Biological Sciences .

All BIOL334 Occurrences

  • BIOL334-23S2 (C) Semester Two 2023