Attending the course of Animal Conservation Genetics, the student will develop a solid background to appreciate the value of genetic diversity and of the micro-evolutionary processes that shape it over time, as well as to identify the major threats to their maintenance. The student will learn a spectrum of methodologies to monitor such diversity in natural and captive populations, and will comprehend the cause-effect mechanisms that lead to a loss of diversity and adaptation with negative impacts on population viability. These skills will enable the student to define experimental protocols for genetic monitoring of animal populations and to contribute to the implementation of adequate wildlife management plans and conservation policies.
Moreover, the preparation of a group project referred to a specific case study will induce students to develop capacities of critical evaluation and interpretation of published data. The project presentation will contribute to train the communication skills, favouring an attitude to clearly expose information, scientific data and personal opinions to a mixed audience of specialists and non-specialists.