BI3051 - Quantitative Analyses in Ecology and Evolution


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: School exam
Grade: Letter grades

Evaluation Weighting Duration Grade deviation Examination aids
School exam 100/100 4 hours D

Course content

The course presents classical methods of statistical analyses for biological data, focusing on the relationships between the biological questions, the study design, and the statistical models used to analyse the data. Emphasis is also placed on the interpretation and presentation of statistical analyses. The course comprises lectures, exercises, discussions of the scientific literature and an obligatory assignment.

The different statistical models presented in the course are: linear models, generalized linear models (with Poisson, Binomial and negative binomial distribution), and mixed effect models. Analyses are performed with R.

Learning outcome

After completing the course, the student should be able to:

  • Understand and use statistical models to perform quantitative analyses in biology.
  • Understand how to apply specific statistical models to different experimental designs in biology.
  • Use the statistical software R to perform data analyses and present the results.
  • Interpret results from statistical analyses.
  • Critically evaluate statistical analyses presented in the literature.
  • Design experiments in biology and perform the statistical analyses of the data.

Learning methods and activities

Lectures (ca. 30 hours), exercises (ca. 30 hours). During the exercises, students analyse data from experiments in biology and interpret and present the results of these analyses. Lecture also include discussions of statistical analyses presented in the scientific literature. Examples are primarily based on studies in ecology and evolution, but data from other fields in biology are also used. For the obligatory semester assignment, groups of students analyse data and present orally the research question, the method used, the results, and their interpretation.

Compulsory assignments

  • Term paper with oral presentation

Further on evaluation

Assessment for the course is a written exam (100%).

The written exam can be changed to an oral exam in the semester when the course is not taught.

The mandatory activity consists of group work with an oral presentation of the work. The work must be approved to take the final exam. Once the mandatory activity is approved it remains valid even in case of failure at the final exam.

Course materials

Lecture notes and primary literature provided and discussed during the course

More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Second degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  AUTUMN 2024

Language of instruction: English

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Ethology
  • Biodiversity
  • Biology
  • Ecology
Contact information
Course coordinator:

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Biology


Examination arrangement: School exam

Term Status code Evaluation Weighting Examination aids Date Time Examination system Room *
Autumn ORD School exam 100/100 D INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
Spring ORD School exam 100/100 D INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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