EEB 391 - Evolutionary Processes and Macroevolution
Winter 2022, Section 001
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (EEB)
Department: LSA Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
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Requirements & Distribution:
With permission of instructor.
Enforced Prerequisites:
(MATH 115, 120, or 185) and (BIOLOGY 171, 192, or 195).
Advisory Prerequisites:
Familiarity with statistics and probability theory as well as prior exposure to an interpreted computer language for mathematics, graphics, and/or statistics (e.g., R, Python, Mathematica) is advised.
This course counts toward the 60 credits of math/science required for a Bachelor of Science degree.
May not be repeated for credit.
Undergrad and Grad
Meet Together Classes:
Primary Instructor:
Start/End Date:
Full Term 1/5/22 - 4/19/22 (see other Sections below)
NOTE: Drop/Add deadlines are dependent on the class meeting dates and will differ for full term versus partial term offerings.
For information on drop/add deadlines, see the Office of the Registrar and search Registration Deadlines.


This lecture/discussion course covers evolutionary biology through examination of its conceptual framework and current research topics. We will consider 30 basic concepts of evolutionary biology, including: phase space and fitness landscape; indirect and direct evidence for past evolution; methods of phylogenetic reconstructions; history of the Earth and life; generalizations emerging from past evolution; cases of direct observations of evolution in nature in the course of domestication and in the context of medicine; the basics of population biology, including coalescence and density regulation; Mendelian and multifactorial variation within populations; factors of microevolution, including mutation, selection, mode of reproduction, population structure, and random drift; the basics of theory of microevolution, including the theory of positive, negative, and weak selection and inverse problems; data on evolution of natural populations; species and speciation; and macroevolution of genomes, complex phenotypes, populations and ecosystems.

Course Requirements:

Six components, each worth 1/6 of the total 1) a quiz after each lecture that consists of one question. Students are encouraged to discuss this question with peers, but are expected to write answers independently. Three worst grades will be ignored. 2) Active participation in discussions. 3) Midterm I, covering the material of lectures 1-11. 4) Midterm II, covering the material of lectures 12-24. 5) A term paper, written in Nature "News and Views" style, that deals with a subject from current literature, chosen by the student in coordination with the instructor. 6) Comprehensive final exam.

Intended Audience:

Biology majors, mostly juniors, who are interested in evolutionary biology and are ready for a quantitative treatment of its basic concepts and results. EEB 391 covers material similar to that of EEB 390. The purpose of EEB 391 is to provide a more formal and quantitative treatment of the basics of evolutionary biology, suitable for a student who has some command of mathematics and is willing to apply it to a biological subject.

Class Format:

3 hours of lectures and 1.5 hours of discussions


EEB 391 - Evolutionary Processes and Macroevolution
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
 In Person
MW 2:30PM - 4:00PM
1/5/22 - 4/19/22
002 (LAB)
 In Person
F 11:00AM - 1:00PM
1/5/22 - 4/19/22

Textbooks/Other Materials

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Syllabi are available to current LSA students. IMPORTANT: These syllabi are provided to give students a general idea about the courses, as offered by LSA departments and programs in prior academic terms. The syllabi do not necessarily reflect the assignments, sequence of course materials, and/or course expectations that the faculty and departments/programs have for these same courses in the current and/or future terms.

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