BIOL 895 (02) - Advanced Studies

Advanced Studies

Durham   Life Sciences & Agriculture :: Biology
Online Course Delivery Method: Hybrid / Blended
Credits: 3.0
Term: Fall 2023 - Full Term (08/28/2023 - 12/11/2023)
Grade Mode: Letter Grading
Class Size:   12  
CRN: 15834
Advanced research or seminar, supervised by a faculty member.
Section Comments: Course Title: Theoretical Ecology
Registration Approval Required. Contact Instructor or Academic Department for permission then register through Webcat.
Attributes: Online with some campus visits, EUNH
Instructors: Easton White

Times & Locations

Start Date End Date Days Time Location
8/28/2023 12/11/2023 W 1:10pm - 3:00pm KING N204
8/28/2023 12/11/2023 Hours Arranged ONLINE
Additional Course Details: 

Course Description: Introduces students to the theoretical development of the field of ecology. Students will read historic and modern papers on topics ranging from the foundations of population and community ecology as well as applied examples. Students will also develop skills in building mathematical models and programming them into a computer language of their choice. The class culminates with a small group project analyzing a dataset, writing up findings in R markdown, and presenting to the course.


  • Students should have experience programming in R, python, Matlab, or a similar language. Students should understand how to define objects, write custom functions, and use for loops.
  • Students should have taken an introductory calculus course (e.g., MATH 424b)

Learning Outcomes (more specific):  By the end of the course, students should be able to:

  • Understand and connect classical and modern papers in theoretical ecology
  • Understand and apply mathematical tools, including equilibrium and stability analysis, matrix algebra, differential and difference equations, bifurcation analysis, and probability theory
  • Use a programming language to build simple population models
  • Construct a mathematical model of a system from scratch