Fall: BSCI 2238/5238 – Ecology
Ecology is the science that investigates the interactions between organisms and their environment, and how those affect populations, communities and ecosystems. Ecological interactions are dynamic in space and time and in this introductory course, you will learn the basic concepts that relate to the interactions and their dynamics, as well as how to use mathematical tools to describe, analyze, and predict ecological dynamics. At the end of the course, you will have a solid conceptual and mathematical understanding of fundamental ideas and theories of Ecology, such as, population growth in time and space, limits to growth, pairwise interactions, community dynamics and patterns, and ecosystem function.
Spring: BSCI 3233/5233 – Conservation Biology
In the last 200 years we have changed Earth’s landscape at unprecedented rates. Our actions have reduced populations of some species, leading some to complete extinction, while increasing population sizes and ranges of others. Should we care about that? Why? What ecological and genetic factors explain these phenomena? This course aims to answer these questions by exposing the students to questions about conservation values, ethics and economics as well as teaching important ecological and genetic concepts that relate to our impacts on other species. Finally, students will learn about successful and unsuccessful propositions and projects on how to mitigate our biodiversity impacts. At the end of the course, students will have a solid understanding of ecological and genetic aspects of preserving nature together with a comprehensive knowledge of the economic and ethical values underlying it.