New search

Evolution and ecology for animal science students

The course provides new perspectives relating to domestic animals’ natural history, welfare, social behavior and disease.

BI1425 Evolution and ecology for animal science students, 7.5 Credits

Evolution och ekologi för djurvetare

Syllabus approved




Education cycle

Bachelor’s level

Advanced study in the main field

First cycle, less than 60 credits from first-cycle courses as entry requirements(G1F)

Grading scale

Pass / Failed The requirements for attaining different grades are described in the course assessment criteria which are contained in a supplement to the course syllabus. Current information on assessment criteria shall be made available at the start of the course.



Prior knowledge

• 10 credits animal science
• 10 credits veterinary medicine
• 10 credits veterinary nursing
• 10 credits equine science
• 10 credits biology
• 10 credits chemistry

Exemption granted from the general entry requirement of Swedish.


The course provides new perspectives relating to domestic animals’ natural history, welfare, social behavior and disease.

On completion of the course, the student should be able to:
- describe the evolutionary selection processes (natural, sexual and artificial selection) as they relate to different animal species,
- account for evolutionary and ecological perspectives on the domestication process, and how to use these perspectives to better understand the morphology, behavior, welfare and susceptibility to disease of domestic
companion animals and livestock,
- discuss how evolutionary and ecological perspectives are used to understand the spread and impact of domestic species within natural ecosystems
- account for ecological and evolutionary processes in disease management and welfare of both domestic and wild animals; in particular the importance of ecological processes within an integrated ‘One Health’ perspective,
- discuss how an understanding of natural selection principles can be extended to non-traditional fields of understanding, such as the evolution of internet memes and viral ideas within our cultural environment.


The course primarily covers the topics of evolution and ecology as they relate to the domestication history and way of life of domestic and wild animals. Specifically the course focuses on the basic principles of natural, sexual and
artificial selection with relevance for all students studying animal sciences.

The course provides a deep understanding of evolutionary and ecological processes and how they can be applied by animal scientists to enrich their understanding of animal biology, behaviour, disease, medicine and culture.
The course primarily focuses on how evolutionary history and ecology have shaped the biology of animals, particularly with regard to companion animals and livestock. Compulsory components are reflections on the course material and online group discussions.

In the course, the following general skills are trained: critical thinking

The course content is made up of lectures, online discussions and reflections of how to use evolutionary and ecological concepts within traditional animal science fields.

Formats and requirements for examination

Approved participation in compulsory reflections and discussions.
  • If the student fails a test, the examiner may give the student a supplementary assignment, provided this is possible and there is reason to do so.
  • If the student has been granted special educational support because of a disability, the examiner has the right to offer the student an adapted test, or provide an alternative assessment.
  • If changes are made to this course syllabus, or if the course is closed, SLU shall decide on transitional rules for examination of students admitted under this syllabus but who have not yet passed the course.
  • For the examination of a degree project (independent project), the examiner may also allow the student to add supplemental information after the deadline. For more information on this, please refer to the regulations for education at Bachelor's and Master's level.

Other information

  • The right to take part in teaching and/or supervision only applies to the course date to which the student has been admitted and registered on.
  • If there are special reasons, the student may take part in course components that require compulsory attendance at a later date. For more information on this, please refer to the regulations for education at Bachelor's and Master's level.

Additional information

Lectures are in English, but Swedish students will have access to a Swedish-English glossary of terms to make it easier to translate concepts discussed during this course into other courses they take.

The lectures and discussions will be accessible ‘live’ as well as being recorded and available online so that students can watch or read the lecture and be involved in discussions at a time best suited to them. Thus the course delivery and the timing of student participation will be flexible to allow students to take the course remotely, or in parallel with other studies, if preferred.

Responsible department

Department of Ecology

Further information

Determined by: Programnämnden för utbildning inom veterinärmedicin och husdjur (PN - VH)
Biology field: Zoologi (djurbiologi)
There are no Grading criteria posted for this course

Course facts

The course is offered as an independent course: Yes Tuition fee: Tuition fee only for non-EU/EEA/Switzerland citizens: 19027 SEK Cycle: Bachelor’s level
Subject: Biology
Course code: BI1425 Application code: SLU-30275 Location: Independent courses Distance course: Yes Language: English Responsible department: Department of Ecology Pace: 25%