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Last update: August 14, 2020

Evolutionary Genetics

  • LV 25600-01: Lecture with exercises (4KP)
  • Modules: Biologie 5 (Bachelor Biologie 07) | Lehrveranstaltungen Master Biologie der Tiere (Master Biologie der Tiere 07)
  • Structure: Lectures & Exercises
  • Medium of teaching: English


  • Dr. Jean-Claude Walser (contact person) | E-mail: jean-claude.walser-at-env.ethz.ch
  • Prof. Dr. Walter Salzburger (walter.salzburger-at-unibas.ch)

Day, time and location for the lectures

  • Tuesday, 14:15-17:00; Small lecture hall (or according to special announcements)
  • Thursday, 14:15-17:00; Small lecture hall (or according to special announcements)

Educational objectives

This course will cover differente domains in modern evolutionary genetics - Bioinfomatics, Population Genetics and Molecular Evolution. The joint discussion in a single course provides an integrated training in Evolutionary Genetics. This discipline is nowadays of increasing importance in other biological fields such as Conservation Biology, Ecology, Behavioral and Evolutionary Ecology and Genetics, Epidemiology of infectious diseases and Evolutionary Biology in general. The course consists of both lectures and exercises. In the lectures we discuss concepts and methods based on research examples. The exercises should help to better understand the theoretical aspects and provide hands-on experiences.


Lecture notes will be provided (see below) but textbook(s) might be helpful to better understand parts of the course. We recommend the following books:

Bioinformatics for Beginners

Bioinformatics for Beginners
Genes, Genomes, Molecular Evolution, Databases and Analytical Tools
Edited by:Supratim Choudhuri
ISBN: 978-0-12-410471-6

A Primer of Ecological Genetics - Conner & Hartl

A Primer of Ecological Genetics
by Jeffrey K. Conner & Daniel L. Hartl
ISBN-10: 087893202X

Molecular Evolution - A Phylogenetic Approach

Molecular Evolution - A Phylogenetic Approach
by Roderic D. M. Page & Edward C. Holmes
ISBN 10: 0865428891 / 0-86542-889-1


To pass this course and obtain the credit points, participation on all four parts is required and the final grading has to be 4 or higher. The final grading will be determined by module assignments (1/3) and a written exam (2/3) at the end.

  • Date of the written exam: 17.12.2020
  • Time: TBA
  • Location: TBA
  • Style: open book (textbooks and scripts allowed), calculator required, not allowed are laptops and cell phones

Specific content:

A) Bioinformatics (Jean-Claude Walser / Weeks 39-41 (22.09-08.10.2020) - Tue 14:15-17:00 and Thu 14:15-17:00)

B) Population Genetics (Jean-Claude Walser / Weeks 45-47 (03.11 - 19.11.2020) - Tue 14:15-17:00 and Thu 14:15-17:00)

C) Molecular Evolution (Walter Salzburger / Weeks 48-50 (24.11-10.12.2020) - Tue 14:15-17:00 and Thu 14:15-17:00)