SHUA13036U Human Evolution and Genetics (elective)

Volume 2020/2021
Education

MSc in Human Biology - elective

Content

This course serves as a general introduction to the study of human evolution, population history and disease evolution. In a series of lectures and interactive sessions we will explore diverse topics including the origins and expansion of anatomically modern humans, the evolution of genetic diversity of human populations and their associated pathogens, and the distribution of genetic factors influencing complex traits and diseases. In addition, the course will include hands-on computational sessions introducing basic tools used to analyze human population genetic data. The Globe Institute at KU/UNICPH is a leader in this field, and the course will showcase some of the ground-breaking research currently being carried out at the institution.

Learning Outcome

After completing the course the student is expected to be able to:

Knowledge:

  • Recognize and describe major milestones in human evolution

  • Explain how modern and ancient DNA is being used to reconstruct aspects of human evolutionary history

  • Assess how modern and ancient genetic data have transformed our understanding of human disease and its evolution

Skills: 

  • Describe and explain the workflow of a typical human population genomic study from the field to the interpretation of the results

  • Handle next-generation sequencing data and perform basic analyses on example genomic datasets

  • Explain how biomolecular data can be used alongside other types of evidence in the study of human evolution and disease

Competencies:

  • Evaluate and critically assess the results and impact(s) of selected seminal studies in human evolutionary genomics

  • Draft a research proposal for a genomics project addressing an open research question in human evolutionary genetics, synthesizing the knowledge and skills acquired during the course and anticipating future progress in the field

Relevant literature will be provided through Absalon.

A completed Bachelor degree in archaeology, anthropology, biology, medicine, or a related field.
The course is aimed at students with a background in biology, bioinformatics, archaeology, medicine, population genetics or a related field.
Lectures, interactive discussion groups, hands-on computational sessions and course assignments.
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 39
  • Class Instruction
  • 20
  • Preparation
  • 99
  • Exercises
  • 28
  • Exam
  • 20
  • Total
  • 206
Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
Credit
2,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Course participation
To pass the course the students must have delivered all of the course assignments and attend at least 80% of the classes.
Aid
All aids allowed
Marking scale
passed/not passed
Censorship form
No external censorship
Several internal examiners.
Criteria for exam assesment

To achieve the grade Passed, the student must be able to:

Knowledge:

  • Recognize and describe major milestones in human evolution

  • Explain how modern and ancient DNA is being used to reconstruct aspects of human evolutionary history

  • Assess how modern and ancient genetic data have transformed our understanding of human disease and its evolution

Skills: 

  • Describe and explain the workflow of a typical human population genomic study from the field to the interpretation of the results

  • Handle next-generation sequencing data and perform basic analyses on example genomic datasets

  • Explain how biomolecular data can be used alongside other types of evidence in the study of human evolution and disease

Credit
5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written assignment, 1 week
Oral examination, 20 minutes under invigilation
Students will be assessed based on one short written take-home assignment (Digital Exam) and one 20-minute final oral exam. Students will have 20 mins preparation time for the oral exam. The grade will be based on an overall assessment.
Exam registration requirements

To be admitted to the oral exam students must have passed the course.

Aid
Only certain aids allowed

Students are only allowed to use materials handed out by the examiners.

Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
More than one internal examiner
Re-exam

Oral Exam, 20 min. The take-home assignment must be handed in no later than 2 weeks before the re-exam. The take-home assignment can be reused or a new or revised version can be submitted.

Criteria for exam assesment

To achieve the grade 12, the student must be able to:

Knowledge:

  • Recognize and describe major milestones in human evolution

  • Explain how modern and ancient DNA is being used to reconstruct aspects of human evolutionary history

  • Assess how modern and ancient genetic data have transformed our understanding of human disease and its evolution

Skills: 

  • Describe and explain the workflow of a typical human population genomic study from the field to the interpretation of the results

  • Handle next-generation sequencing data and perform basic analyses on example genomic datasets

  • Explain how biomolecular data can be used alongside other types of evidence in the study of human evolution and disease