Nov 30, 2023
GEOL 5480 - Paleoecology
Examination of concepts of the relationship of organisms with their environment that can be effectively studied within the fossil record. Topics include competition, predation, ecologic convergence, community paleoecology, and relationship to macroevolution. Will be divided between lectures and discussions of current paleoecologic literature.
Credit Hours: 4
Repeat/Retake Information: May not be retaken.
Lecture/Lab Hours: 2.0 lecture, 2.0 laboratory
Grades: Eligible Grades: A-F,WP,WF,WN,FN,AU,I
- Students will be able to employ a variety of quantitative paleoecological methods in case study driven homework assignments.
- Students will be able to analyze and critique current scientific literature.
- Students will be able to describe the complex relationships between paleoecology, macroevolution, and diversity.
- Students will be able to qualitatively describe the quality of the fossil record and how that quality impacts the validity of paleontological research.
- Students will be able to apply paleoecological principles and generate a data collection scheme in the field.
- Students will be able to produce written and oral presentations based on paleoecological research
- Students will be able to explain evolutionary ecology trends, including the three marine faunas and changes in predation pressure through the Phanerozoic.
- Students will be able to explain how paleoecology is used to determine functional morphology and paleoenvironmental preferences of extinct taxa.
- Students will be able to explain that environmental changes are the primary drivers of evolutionary changes.
- Students will be able to explain the primary ecological causes for the mass extinctions known as the Big Five.
- Students will be able to explain the utility of tools such as sequence stratigraphy and stable isotopic analysis for interpreting ancient environments.
- Students will be able to critique case studies presented in recent journal articles.
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