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This course deals with the living world at the level of whole organisms, populations, communities, biomes, ecosystems and the biosphere. It is designed to introduce you to the fields of evolution, systematic, ecology, environmental science, behavior and conservation biology. The major focus of the course will be on evolution, since an understanding of the evolutionary process enables us to grasp why there are so many different kinds of living things, how they interact with each other to produce complex ecosystems, the ways in which the interactions may lead to evolution of complex behaviors, how evolution has often brought about large changes in body plan, and how species (including ourselves) are likely to continue to evolve. Such knowledge is essential for understanding biology in general, and provides the tools for our stewardship of the planet's biota and the sustainability of the ecological services we take for granted.

Course Number: BILD-X3
Credit: 4.00 unit(s)