BIO6830EN - Biogeography

Course description

Biogeography is an interdisciplinary field that explores the roles that biological and geographical factors play in shaping biodiversity. This course examines the key drivers, theories, and hypotheses that explain the global distribution of species and provides numerous examples from different plant and animal case studies. Emphasis is placed on the role of vicariance, dispersal, adaptation, palaeo- and contemporary climatic conditions and the effects of global change on species distribution. Using analytical discussions and presentations, aspects of ecological biogeography, such as invasion, migration, island biogeography, biogeography of domesticated biota (selected case studies), ecological conservation, and sustainable food systems are investigated.

How this course benefits students

This course exposes students to the biogeographical concepts and processes that impact the ecology of species, communities, and ecosystems. Upon completion, students are able to critically assess the factors that affect the distribution patterns of species and formulate ideas that are essential to ecological conservation.

Why this course is important

Students have the opportunity to analyze the key factors that influence biodiversity and species distribution. The course includes presentations and case studies that allow students to expand and apply their understanding of the challenges and potential solutions that relate to biodiversity and ecological conservation.

Credit hours
3 hours
Subject area
Biological Studies
Educational level
Learning type
Upcoming terms
* Schedule subject to change. Please contact the Registrar's office with schedule questions.
Dr. Carla Thomas, Professor of Environmental Studies

How this course relates to missional core values

Biblically based

This course offers insights into our Christian obligation to protect and conserve our environment.

Missionally driven

This course provides students the opportunity to critically examine and apply the principles of sustainability, environmental protection, and biodiversity as core objectives for missional biologists.

Contextually informed

The interdisciplinary nature of biogeography provides an integrative approach to exploring and synthesizing knowledge from various disciplines whilst emphasizing the practical application of the core principles to the mission field in any context.

Interculturally focused

This course allows students from any and every culture to explore, analyze, and apply general theories, hypotheses, and concepts of species distribution to issues and controversies related to biodiversity.

Practically minded

Understanding the drivers that shape the distribution of different species provides valuable insights into answering key questions that underlay the non-uniform distribution of living things worldwide.

Experientially transformed

This course allows students to synthesize their knowledge of biodiversity, ecological conservation, and global change while formulating and testing hypotheses that are essential to addressing issues related to sustainability.