Introduction to Evolution and Ecology

Undergraduate course

Course description

Objectives and Content

The subject gives a basic introduction to how the process of evolution can be utilized to achieve biological insight: how adaptation operates in biological entities, genetic algorithms, evolution of life and macroevolution, population genetics, human evolution. The course does also contain basic population dynamics, the development of the field of biology, and ends with areas for application for evolutionary principles. The mathematical contents of the course is linked to population dynamics, population genetics, behaviour, and natural selection.

Learning Outcomes


  • have knowledge of the history and core logic of evolutionary theory, as well as of Darwin and other key people
  • know how evolution takes place at the individual and population level and has a molecular basis
  • have knowledge of key concepts, definitions and theories in ecology, behavior, learning, life history, population dynamics, genetics and evolution
  • have an understanding of how selection pressure arises in ecological interaction and competition between individual and species
  • know the main lines of life's origin and evolution on earth, including the evolution of man


  • do simple arithmetic problems and calculations in population dynamics and genetics, including using spreadsheets
  • be able to read and explain graphs with research results

General competence:

  • apply a precise terminology with clear use of concepts and unambiguous sentences
  • see parallels and draw lines between different biological disciplines as the theory of evolution brings them together
  • recognize and discuss evolutionary issues in texts on biological systems
  • collaborate in groups and reason and argue about evolution and ecology

ECTS Credits


Level of Study


Semester of Instruction


This course has a limited capacity, enrolment is based on application. The application deadline is Wednesday in week 33 for the autumn semester. Please see this page for more information. You will receive confirmation of whether you received a seat in Studentweb no later than Monday the week after the deadline.

It is compulsory to attend the first lecture/orientation meeting, or you risk losing your seat. If you are unable to attend the first lecture, you must contact the Study Section ( The time of the first lecture/orientation meeting can be found in the schedule on the course website or on Mitt UiB.

Place of Instruction

Recommended Previous Knowledge
The course is based upon MAT101 or MAT111 which can be read in parallel.
Teaching and learning methods
Lectures and activities
Forms of Assessment
Portfolio assessment
Grading Scale
The grading scale used is A to F. Grade A is the highest passing grade, grade F is a fail.
Reading List
The reading list will be available within July 1st for the autumn semester and December 1st for the spring semester.
Course Evaluation
Students will evaluate the course in accordance with the quality assurance system at UiB and the Department. You can find courseevaluations in the Quality Assurance Reports.
Programme Committee
The Programme Committee is responsible for the content, structure and quality of the study programme and courses.
Course Administrator
The Faculty og Mathematics and Natural Sciences - Department of Biological Sciences has the responsibility for the course and study programme