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Basic Animal Breeding and Genetics

This distance course gives an introduction to genetics of domestic animals, for example dogs, horses, sheep, cows. All aspects from the DNA of a single individual to the variation and changes in a group of animals are covered in the course. Lectures gives examples on how different traits are inherited and how breeding can be planned for different species. Exercises give the students knowledge about how the traits in the offspring can be predicted from the traits of the parents.

Here is a link to the public Canvas page for the course spring 2021. The course will be similar next semester. The other information in Canvas is avaialble to students that are registered on the course.

Additional course evaluations for HV0189

Academic year 2020/2021

Basic Animal Breeding and Genetics (HV0189-30137) 2021-01-18 - 2021-06-06

HV0189 Basic Animal Breeding and Genetics, 7.5 Credits

Grundläggande husdjursgenetik och avel

Syllabus approved



Biology Animal science

Education cycle

First cycle

Advanced study in the main field

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

Grading scale

5:Pass with Distinction, 4:Pass with Credit, 3:Pass, U:Fail 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

Knowledge equivalent to:
- 30 hp Animal Science
- 30 hp Biology
- 30 hp Veterinary medicine
- 30 hp Animal nursing

and English 6


The aim of the course is to provide general knowledge in animal breeding
And genetics.

On completion of the course, the student will be able to:
- explain the purpose of animal breedin in an easy-to-understand manner,

- give an account of basic genetics, organization of the genome as well as regulation of gene expressions,
- explain what biological variation means, what causes it and how it can be described,
- explain how genetic variation can be changed through evolutionary processes and natural selection and how genetic variation can be preserved,
- carry out simple calculations of probability of the genotype of the offspring given the genotypes of parents,
 allele frequencies, genetic variation, heritabilities and individual animals’ inbreeding,
- describe how genetic correlations and individual animals’ breeding values can be estimated,
- describe various types of breeding programs and assess their consequences for the animals’ welfare.


The course starts with an overview of animal breeding and its purpose.
The course provides knowledge of Mendelian inheritance, organization of genome, gene regulation, the function of genes, gene families as well as central genetic and molecular genetic methods. The course also contains genetic variation, population genetics, conservation biology, inbreeding, measures of genetic variation and relationships between traits as well as breeding programs.
The course deals with both natural selection and strategies for sustainable genetic improvement of domestic animals. Ethical questions are discussed in the course.

The teaching is in the form of recorded lectures and demonstrations of calculations, as well as discussions and answering of questions online. The student strengthens his/her knowledge by calculation exercises and other exercises.

In the course, the following general skills are trained: problem-solving, written communication.

Formats and requirements for examination

Passed written examination. Approved assignments and participation in discussion online can give bonus points for the exam.
  • 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

The course is given as a distance course with written examination in Uppsala at the end of the course.

Responsible department

Department of Animal Breeding and Genetics

Further information

Determined by: Programnämnden för utbildning inom veterinärmedicin och husdjur (PN - VH)
Biology field: Genetik
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: First cycle
Subject: Biology Animal science
Course code: HV0189 Application code: SLU-10300 Location: Uppsala Distance course: Yes Language: English Responsible department: Department of Animal Breeding and Genetics Pace: 25%