APS 125 Genes in Populations

Level 1
Semester 1B
Credits 10
Teaching Staff  Dr Kai Zeng, Professor Jon Slate
Co-ordinator Dr Kai Zeng


Population genetics and quantitative genetics are fundamental to our understanding of the process of evolution, and are therefore essential for modern biological research. This module provides an introduction to classical population genetics and quantitative genetics, and covers topics such as Mendelian inheritance, genetic linkage, sources and maintenance of variation in populations, quantitative traits, heritability, divergence of populations, and speciation. The lectures will illustrate an approach to understanding genetics at the individual and population levels whereby inferences are made through quantitative analyses. An emphasis will be placed on how population and quantitative genetic studies can provide great insight into many important topics in biology, including human medicine, evolutionary biology and anthropology

Aims and Objectives

This unit aims to introduce students to the study of genetics at the organismal and population levels and demonstrate the importance of these topics using examples from human medicine, evolutionary biology, and anthropology. By the end of the unit, a candidate will be able to demonstrate knowledge of:

1. The sources and types of mutations
2. The fundamentals of Mendelian inheritance
3. Genetic linkage and gene mapping
4. The importance of genetic variation and its maintenance in populations
5. The genetic basis of natural selection
6. Conservation genetics and human evolutionary genetics
7. Quantitative traits and their heritability
8. The process of population divergence and speciation

Delivery Method: Lectures and Practicals

Assessment Method: 2 hour, multiple-choice examination

FEEDBACK: You will receive feedback via the online self-assessment test. You will also receive feedback on your performance in different sections of the multiple choice examination after the marks have been released.

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