BIO 450/550 – Human Evolutionary Genomics

Categories: Genomics
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About Course

This course conveys genomics approaches to tackle the questions: “What makes us human?” and “Why are we different from each other.” Specifically, this course will introduce the state-of-the-art concepts and methodologies in human evolutionary genomics, exploring topics such as ‘human genomic variation’, ‘ancient admixture’, ‘gene-phenotype-environment’ interactions’, ‘adaptive developmental evolution’, ‘nature vs. nurture’, ‘genetic bases of disease’, and ‘experimental and statistical approaches to associate genotype to phenotype’.  The course is aimed at students in biological sciences and related fields with a strong interest in evolutionary genetics and human genomic variation. Also, this course is relevant to advanced students in several disciplines, including biomedical sciences and anthropology. After taking this course, each student will learn the contemporary theoretical and methodological state of human evolutionary genomics. The course involves discussions about controversial subjects, including but not limited to race and racism, biological bases of sex, genetically modified organisms, eugenics, etc. The students are expected to contribute to these discussions rigorously and with the utmost respect for other students’ opinions.

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What Will You Learn?

  • Critically understand the general theoretical and methodological foundations of human population genetics and comparative primate genetics
  • Get accustomed to large genomic data sets
  • Articulate, discuss and present research reports from different subfields genomics
  • Understand the fundamentals of modern scientific processes in genomics, such as experimental design, peer-review, ethical considerations, etc.
  • Write a short research proposal/review regarding human evolutionary genetics and learn the grant/manuscript evaluation process.
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