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2024/25 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

BLGY3245 Advanced Topics in Evolution

20 creditsClass Size: 105

Module manager: Dr Andrew Peel

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2024/25


BLGY2220Evolution, Adaptation and Behaviour

This module is not approved as a discovery module


Students will have an understanding of a range of approaches to evolution, from molecular to ecological.

Learning outcomes
On completion of this module, students should be able to:
- understand recent theoretical and empirical developments in three areas of current research in the field of evolutionary biology;
- critically read the primary literature in evolutionary biology;
- synthesise information from the primary literature, contribute effectively to group discussions of issues raised in research papers or reviews, present written analyses of papers or groups of papers and summarise key points in effective oral presentations.


The module will consists of group studies of advanced, research-led topics in evolution. Topics may include emerging infectious diseases, variation and speciation, and symbiosis, but will vary from year to year. They will be selected according to staff interests, recent developments in the field, and the construction of a coherent package for the students that covers a range of approaches to evolution, from molecular to ecological. Each topic will be introduced by a 'scene setting lecture' by a member of staff and students will then be given a set of references to relevant papers in the library. Groups will present their reports on the topic via written material in the VLE and seminars.

This course requires active and sustained participation in the group discussions leading up to the writing of reviews, the delivery of presentations, or the asking of questions at presentation sessions.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours184.00
Total Contact hours16.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

The actual time required for the various elements will vary between students.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

- Monitoring through VLE discussion rooms: there is an assessment element for engagement in the discussions so all students in the class will be monitored closely and continuously by the course team.
- Engagement in module seminar and discussion sessions.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
ReportA brief but informative and in-context survey 'News and Views' article33.00
PresentationGroup oral presentation33.00
In-course AssessmentIndividual Science Communication Exercise34.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 16/05/2024


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