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Teaching

Teaching Program

  • Our teaching program involves courses at both the undergraduate and graduate level for biologists, teacher training students and students of agricultural sciences and environmental management, bioinformatics and systems biology, and global change biology.
  • The undergraduate courses are directed at basic zoology and evolutionary biology, and serve the needs of students in two faculties. Center of our undergraduate teaching is the bachelor of science in biology with courses offered in systematics, evolutionary biology, practical limnology, and applied bioinformatics.
  • The graduate program trains students seeking a master degree in biology. Formal courses are offered by our group in the fields of evolutionary biology, molecular ecology, and bioinformatics. Some of these courses involve field work both in Germany and abroad and students may also take advantage of experiential learning opportunities in our well-equipped labs. In addition, students must satisfy research requirements for the degree and prepare a written thesis in which they are encouraged to participate in our externally funded research projects.
  • Our group is also home to annually 5-8 Ph.D. students preparing their dissertations in the field of evolutionary biology.


Teaching Philosophy

  • The goal of our teaching program is to encourage curiosity, life-long learning and critical thinking, and to provide students with a broad knowledge and understanding of zoology and evolutionary biology. We are mindful of the need to help students develop skills for the "real world" environment. These skills include teamwork, communication and leadership skills as well as personal effectiveness and self-reliance.
  • We recognize that different students may have different learning styles and that they may benefit from different instructional approaches. A concerted effort has been made in all of our classes to better engage students in the learning process by providing opportunities for anytime, anyplace access to educational materials in StudIP.
  • The other area of importance to our teaching program is career-building. We take great pride in assisting our students in helping them defining and following up on their specific career goals both in dedicated career building seminars and in ad hoc consultations.
  • Teaching is stressed as an important component of departmental function and given equal credit to research. We feel privileged to train the next generation of biologists, biology teachers, agricultural scientists, bioinformaticians and global change biologists.