• Application Deadline
  • 2 months
    Duration

About

In the previous course in the Specialization, we learned how to compare genes, proteins, and genomes.  One way we can use these methods is in order to construct a "Tree of Life" showing how a large collection of related organisms have evolved over time.

In the first half of the Molecular Evolution (Bioinformatics IV) Course offered by Coursera in partnership with UC San Diego, we will discuss approaches for evolutionary tree construction that have been the subject of some of the most cited scientific papers of all time, and show how they can resolve quandaries from finding the origin of a deadly virus to locating the birthplace of modern humans.

In the second half of the course, we will shift gears and examine the old claim that birds evolved from dinosaurs.  How can we prove this?  In particular, we will examine a result that claimed that peptides harvested from a T. rex fossil closely matched peptides found in chickens. In particular, we will use methods from computational proteomics to ask how we could assess whether this result is valid or due to some form of contamination.

Finally, you will learn how to apply popular bioinformatics software tools to reconstruct an evolutionary tree of ebolaviruses and identify the source of the recent Ebola epidemic that caused global headlines.

Detailed Programme Facts

Programme Structure

Course Structure:
  • Week 1: Introduction to Evolutionary Tree Construction
  • Week 2: More Algorithms for Constructing Trees from Distance Matrices
  • Week 3: Constructing Evolutionary Trees from Characters
  • Week 4
  • Week 5: Resolving the T. rex Peptides Mystery?

Audience

This course is primarily aimed at undergraduate-level learners in computer science, biology, or a related field who are interested in learning about how the intersection of these two disciplines represents an important frontier in modern science.

English Language Requirements

This programme requires students to demonstrate proficiency in English.

Academic Requirements

We require only a basic knowledge of high school-level biology and the ability to think technically.

Tuition Fee

  • International Applies to you

    49 USD/module
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 49 USD per module and a duration of 2 months.
  • National Applies to you

    49 USD/module
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 49 USD per module and a duration of 2 months.
We've labeled the tuition fee that applies to you because we think you are from and prefer over other currencies.
  • $49 per month to continue learning
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Funding

Check the programme website for information about funding options.

StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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