Biology 484: Senior Seminar - Biology of Extinctions

Human-induced extinctions are proceeding at an incredible rate, which will have wide-ranging effects on current biological systems. Extinctions of human diseases have been thought of as beneficial, whereas enormous effort has been expended to protect a few survivors of disappearing plants and animals. Specific topics will depend on student interests, but may include historic patterns in extinction, historic and modern causes of extinctions, and the biological and economic implications of extinctions. Topics will be studied by analysis of the primary literature and include student-selected case studies. Classes will involve discussions, student presentations, and short lectures.