2012-13 Catalog

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Offering Description

Sex and Evolution


Fall 2012 quarter

Karen Hogan ecology, plant biology
Fields of Study
biology, ecology and environmental studies
Preparatory for studies or careers in
environmental sciences, ecology, and evolutionary biology.

This program is an introduction to some of the central concepts in evolutionary theory.  We’ll read works by and about Darwin and some of his contemporaries and learn about the scientific and cultural context of Darwin’s work. Darwin's work provided the foundations for evolutionary biology and ecology by developing the concept that ecological interactions can be best understood by looking at how adaptations of the organism (form, physiology, behavior) interact with its environment (physical conditions, competition, predation, etc.) to influence the organism's evolutionary fitness (reproductive success).

We'll study the importance of sex in evolutionary biology.  Why is sexual reproduction virtually ubiquitous in biology even though, in sexually reproducing organisms, only half of the individuals (females) produce offspring and the offspring only carry half of the genetic information from each parent? Why do few strictly asexual organisms exist? We will read works on the natural history of reproduction in animals and plants as we study evolutionary theory, genetics, and ecology.

Students will be expected to approach the topics with rigor from a scientific perspective. Some upper division credit may be awarded for upper division work by arrangement with the faculty at the beginning of the quarter and ongoing communication with the faculty throughout the quarter.

Advertised Schedule
6-9:50p Mon/Wed, 9a-4:50p Sat (Sep. 29, Oct. 13, 27, Nov. 10, Dec. 1)
Online Learning
Enhanced Online Learning
Greener Store
Offered During
Evening and Weekend

Program Revisions

Date Revision
May 4th, 2012 New offering as of May 2012.