XiaLab at University of Ottawa

Skip Navigation Links

BIO3102 Molecular Evolution (Winter term)

Student composition: Biochem (14.46%), Biology (14.46%), BioMed (34.94%), BioPharm (30.12%), Chemistry (2.41%), Other (3.611%).


Read before you register for the course:

  • Register only AFTER you have completed two years of studies at the university. Second-year students on average get worse grades than 3rd-year or 4th-year students.
  • Variation in grade distribution is greater for this course than for most other biological courses. If you have low grades from other courses, you are likely to get even lower grade from this course. However, if you have high grades from other courses, you should expect to maintain your high grade.
  • Attend all classes (I will circulate an attendance sheet at the beginning of the class and collect it at the end). Those who missed classes typically performed poorly in exams. Don't believe those who claimed to get an A without attending classes. You learn the most by going to the class and asking questions.
  • Don't sit far back in the classroom. I use chalkboard often. You won't see the chalkboard if you sit far back in the classroom.
  • Form study groups to challenge each other with questions.
  • Seek clarification from me if you find anything ambiguous in lectures or lecture slides.


  • Exams are cumulative.
  • I can accept the following as valid reasons for missing an exam (Other reasons may need to go through Faculty Secretariate):
    1. being sick (A doctor's certificate is needed, ideally from UO's Health Services as doctor's note from other clinics may need validation by UO's Health Services.)
    2. medical emergency of an immediate family member (A doctor's certificate is needed)
    3. death of an immediate family member (A death certificate is needed)
  • Students who miss a mid-term exam may be allowed to take a deferred exam or transfer the weigth to other exams.

Lecture schedule:

2019-01-09WednesdayGene structure, protein and genetic code1
2019-01-11FridayMutations and evolutionary consequences1
2019-01-16WednesdayPopulation genetics and neutral theory2
2019-01-18FridayPopulation genetics and neutral theory3
2019-01-23WednesdaySequence evolution and homology identification3
2019-01-25FridaySequence evolution and homology identification4
2019-01-30WednesdaySubstitution model, distance, evolutionary rates4
2019-02-01FridaySubstitution model, distance, evolutionary rates4
2019-02-06WednesdayMid-Term Test #1
2019-02-08FridayMolecular Clock5
2019-02-13WednesdayMale-driven evolution5
2019-02-15FridayMolecular phylogenetics: Basic concepts5
2019-02-20WednesdayReading week
2019-02-22FridayReading week
2019-02-27WednesdayMolecular phylogenetics: Distance-based methods5
2019-03-01FridayMolecular phylogenetics: maximum parsimony5
2019-03-06WednesdayMolecular phylogenetics: maximum likelihood5
2019-03-08FridayMolecular phylogenetic applications
2019-03-13WednesdayMid-Term Test #2
2019-03-15FridayUniversal tree6
2019-03-20WednesdayOrigin and evolution of Hawaiian Banza species6
2019-03-22FridayOrigin and evolution of new genes6
2019-03-27WednesdayOrigin and evolution of new genes6
2019-03-29FridayEvolution by transposition7
2019-04-03WednesdayGenome evolution8
2019-04-05FridayReview Session
© 2016. XiaLab. All Rights Reserved.