Department of Biological Sciences (BIO)

Master's Programme in Biology - specialization biodiversity, evolution and ecology

Objectives and content

The study programme will give you a broad introduction to ecology, evolution or systematic research. The programme covers themes that range from the biology of single organisms to biogeographical patterns, and you can immerse yourself in both theoretical and applied research. Through choosing your own subjects and working independently, you will acquire scientific competence. By working on the masters project you will learn to work in a scientific manner. After completing the study you will have a working knowledge of scientific methods and have developed the ability for critical thinking based upon knowledge of the subjects. Thesis topics can be drawn from fields such as behavioral ecology, biodiversity, biogeography, evolutionary biology, quantitative ecology, landscape ecology, paleoecology, parasitology, population biology, population genetics, taxonomy and systematics, vegetation history, and pollen analysis.


Having completed the Masters programme in Biology, with specialization in Biodiversity, Evolution and Ecology, the student will:


  • Know fundamental patterns and processes in biodiversity, ecology and evolution.
  • Be well acquainted with, and understand, evolutionary and ecological theory for interspecific variation in adaptation to the biotic and abiotic environment.
  • Understand how human activities effect other populations, species, and ecosystems.


  • Be able to use evolutionary theory to explain biological patterns.
  • Contribute to understanding the issues that are important in natural resource management and provide relevant knowledge in conservation and management issues.
  • Be familiar with relevant research questions in biodiversity, evolution and ecology, and be able to set up experiments or field studies which can aid in answering such questions.
  • Be able to access in the biological scientific literature and understand relevant methodology.
  • Be able to retrieve, analyze and apply new knowledge within the field
  • Be able to analyze, interpret and discuss their own data in an academic and critical manner, in light of data and theories in the field.
  • Be able to manage and present quantitative data, discuss the precision and accuracy and to use the basic statistical principles

General competences

  • Be able to work in accord with scientific principles, and understand and respect openness, precision, accountability and the significance of distinguishing between knowledge and opinion.
  • Be able to present, orally and in writing, research results put into context of existing knowledge, also to non-specialists.
  • Be able to analyze the biological scientific issues and participate in the discussion of approaches and ways of solving the issue.
  • Be able to work independently and as part of a team with comprehensive and demanding assignments, and to meet deadlines.
  • Be able to discuss the student's research field in public discussions.


 Full programme description for the specialization in biodiversity, evolution and ecology.