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Because of the breadth of fields covered by this program, there are no fixed courses required of all students other than IB 546A (and IB 546B for new first-year students)—see Core Courses. The goal is to allow maximum flexibility while providing close supervision. It is strongly recommended that you confer with your advisor regarding the courses which you should take.

The number of courses and the particular courses taken depend on the individual's previous training and knowledge. Courses and laboratory and field experiences are supplemented by Other Courses below for suggestions.

Doctoral students: You must complete at least 96 hours of 400- or 500-level courses (64 hours beyond the M.S. requirements) with grades no lower than B or S.

Terminal Master's students: By the end of the second year, you must complete 32 hours of course work in your three core areas with grades no lower than B or S. No more than 12 hours of research (590 or 599 courses) can be counted.

Individual Topics (590) or Thesis Research (599):

Doctoral students should be registered in IB 590 before your Prelim and then in 599 from the time of your Prelim until your Final Defense. Terminal Master's students need to register in at least one semester of 599, but may register in 599 for all terms.

Approved rubrics for 599 are BIOL, NRES, ENT or PBIO. Approval to count 599 courses in rubrics other than those listed above, must be granted through a petition. The CRNs used for IB 590 and the 599 courses are individual to your advisor, and sometimes the semester. Please contact the PEEC secretary (or the secretary of your advisor's department) to obtain the correct CRN. Note: The number in the Course Schedule is a generic number and is NOT the correct number to use.

Other Courses:

Each semester, Special Topics courses are offered that may be of particular interest to students in the Program in Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology.

Also, the following is a partial list of courses that may be taken by PEEC students. You may want to take a look at the advanced IB courses by semester controlled by IB as well.

Ecology   |   Evolution & Systematics   |   Conservation Biology   |   Tools


Course ID Course Description
IB 431 Behavioral Ecology. Areas of current interest at the interface of behavior, ecology, and evolution.
IB 439 Biogeography. Spatial and temporal patterns of biological diversity and the factors that goven the distribution and abundance of taxa.
IB 442 Functional Ecology of Trees. Synthesis of the physiological and morphological mechanisms defining the ecological performance of trees and other woody plants in natural communities.
IB 443 Evolutionary Ecology. Evolution of life-history strategies in plants and animals and the coevolution of animals and plants.
IB 444 Insect Ecology. Practical and theoretical aspects of ecology in relation to insects as individuals, populations, and communities.
IB 447 Field Ecology. Study of plant communities in various sections of North America.
IB 449 Limnology. Study of the lake, pond, and river with emphasis on the physical environment as well as on plants and animals that live in fresh water.
IB 450 Stream Ecology. A description of physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of streams and rivers including an integrated study of the environmental factors affecting the composition and distribution of biota.
IB 452 Ecosystem Ecology. Distribution and structure of ecosystems on earth; integration of multiple disciplines to gain a holistic view of ecosystem function; ecosystem concepts as they apply to understand natural and anthropogenic environmental change. Offered in alternate years.
IB 453 Community Ecology. The direct and indirect interactions among species that determine the structure and composition of plant and animal communities. Emphasis will be on the maintenance of species diversity and its consequences at both local and regional scales.
NRES 419 Environment and Plant Ecosystems. Relationships between environmental factors and structural characteristics and processes in ecosystems; impact of human activities on the environment and their effect on plant ecosystems.
NRES 465 Landscape Ecology. Introduction to the theory, methods, and application of landscape ecology, with an emphasis on characterizing heterogeneity and examining its consequences for ecological processes across a variety of spatial and temporal scales.

Evolution and Systematics

Course ID Course Description
ANTH 407 Evolutionary Immunology.
IB 405 Ecological Genetics. Study of genetics of natural populations stressing empirical observations and experiments.
IB 416 Population Genetics. Mathematical theory of the genetics of populations.
IB 426 Environmental and Evolutionary Physiology of Animals. Physiological adaptations of invertebrate and vertebrate animals to diverse aquatic and terrestrial environments.
IB 461 Ornithology. Structure, function, ecology, behavior, and evolution of birds of the world.
IB 462 Mammalogy. Classification, distribution, life history, evolution, and identification of mammals.
IB 463 Ichthyology. Classification, anatomy, ecology, behavior, distribution, and evolution of fishes of the world.
IB 464 Herpetology. Classification, diversity, structure, function, ecology, behavior, and evolution of amphibians and reptiles.
IB 467 Principles of Systematics. Comprehensive survey of the theory and methodology of systematics as they are applied today to all groups of organisms.
IB 468 Insect Classification and Evolution. Analytical survey of the classification and evolution of the orders and principal families of insects.
IB 471 Fungal Diversity and Ecology. An introduction to the extraordinary diversity of fungi: from symbionts of lichens to decomposers and mycorrhizas and the pathogens of plants and animals.
IB 501 Programming for Genomics.
MCB 435 Evolution of Infectious Disease.
PSYC 433 Evolutionary Neuroscience.

Conservation Biology

Course ID Course Description
ANSC 406 Zoo Animal Conservation Science. The conservation, physiology and management of exotic animal species in a captive setting.
CB 540 Wildlife Ecosystem Health.
IB 444 Insect Pest Management. Study of the principles underlying the control of important insect pests of agriculture and of human and animal health.
IB 451 Conservation Biology. Emphasis on the preservation of biological diversity and its evolutionary potential.
IB 545 Fish and Wildlife Ecology Seminar. Modern ecological principles and concepts to specific problems in fisheries and wildlife.
NRES 407 Wildlife Population Ecology.
NRES 409 Fishery Ecol and Conservation.
NRES 420 Restoration Ecology. Historical development of ecological restoration, its philosophical foundation, multi-disciplinary borrowings from the natural, applied, and social sciences, and varied practical applications, with an emphasis on the application of ecological principles.
NRES 423 Politics of International Conservation and Development.
NRES 429 Aquatic Ecosystem Conservation.
NRES 474 Soil Conservation and Management. Application of principles of soil conservation and management to the solution of land-use problems.


Course ID Course Description
GEOG 477 Introduction to Remote Sensing: Fundamentals of energy-matter interaction mechanisms.
IB 491 Biological Modeling. Interdisciplinary modeling course for students interested in dynamic system modeling of living processes.
IB 492 Spatial Ecosystem Modeling. Students build a spatial dynamic ecosystem computer model as a research team, focusing on a specific endangered species or ecosystem.
IB 494 Theoretical Biology + Models.
IB 501 Programming for Genomics.
MCB 571 Bioinformatics.
NRES 421 Natural Resource Biometrics. Statistical methods and modeling techniques used in management of forest and natural resources.
NRES 454 Geographical Information Systems for Natural Resource Management.
NRES 598 TRS Terrestrial Remote Sensing App.
NRES 598 MEM Microbial Ecology Methods.
NRES 598 QTF Quant Techniques - Fish & Wildlife.
PATH/GEOG 560 Spatial Epidemiology: Patterns of health and disease in place and time.
PATH 517 Principle/Method Epidemiology.

320 Morrill Hall, MC-118
505 South Goodwin Ave.
Urbana, IL 61801  USA
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