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Landscape Genetics Course 2016

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Online Landscape Genetics Graduate Student Course
When: Jan 13 - May 4, 2016, Wed 8:30 - 10:30 PST
Cost $750 individuals, $1000 Groups
Course Organizers: Helene Wagner, Melanie Murphy, and Lisette Waits
Co-Instructors: Niko Balkenhol, Sam Cushman, Rodney Dyer, Andrew Eckert, Marie-Josee Fortin, Caren Goldberg, Nusha Keyghobadi, Erin Landguth, Stephanie Manel, Brad McRae, Kim Selkoe, Steve Spear, and others
Course description
This course on Landscape Genetics provides a unique opportunity for interdisciplinary training and provides an overview of the field of landscape genetics. The course caters to students in both basic and applied ecology, especially conservation/population genetics, landscape ecology and conservation biology. A key objective of landscape genetics is to study how landscape modification and habitat fragmentation affect organism dispersal and gene flow across the landscape. Landscape genetics requires highly interdisciplinary specialized skills making intensive use of technical population genetic skills and spatial analysis tools (spatial statistics, GIS tools and remote sensing). Even when students receive disciplinary training in these areas, educational programs often lack the necessary linkage and synthesis among disciplines. This linkage can only be accomplished after experts from each discipline work together to develop guiding principles for this new research area.
Landscape Genetics will be concurrently offered at six universities in North America and Europe giving students the opportunity to learn from international experts and work with peers from outside institutions. For students who are not members of the participating institutions, we are offering a web-based online course to reach a broader audience. Each course meeting will start with a live web-cast lecture (no special software required) by an expert on the topic that introduces foundations and methods and highlights points for discussion in local seminar groups. After breaking out into local course group discussion (including a discussion group for online course students), a web-based discussion across campuses will wrap up the weekly topic. Students who are unable to make it to live-cast of lectures can view taped lectures. In addition, students can choose to participate in an optional lab section using R and/or interdisciplinary group term projects with web-based collaboration across institutions. The final two options are provided to help students develop analytical skills in Landscape Genetics. Students who participate in group projects will have the option of applying to attend a project synthesis meeting in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho in May 2016.
Course topics
- Landscape genetics framework, Measuring gene flow, Alternative views of landscapes
- Spatial analysis framework, Identifying discrete populations
- Incorporating landscape data, Matrix resistance approaches in landscape genetics
- Distance-based methods, Model selection and validation
- Role of simulation modeling, Network-based methods
- Landscape genetics of adaptive variation

Course Textbook: Landscape genetics: Concepts, methods, applications. 2015. Balkenhol, Cushman, Storfer, Waits, eds, Blackwell.

Faculty who would like to add a local section of the course at their university can register as a group or multiple students at one institution can register as a group. However, note that only one log in will be provided per group.

How to register? http://www.jooners.com/guest?l=e867e8be-02f7-400e-b446-e90c699502b7

Note: University credit will not be provided but students who need course credit can set up an independent study course at their home institution and turn in specific assignments during the semester. Contact Lisette Waits if you are interested in this option.

Lisette Waits, PhD
Distinguished Professor
Department Head
Dept Fish and Wildlife Sciences
University of Idaho
875 Perimeter Drive MS 1136
Moscow ID 83844-1136
Phone: (208) 885 7823

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