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Modelling Biological Systems BIOS13

7,5 credits

Big tree. Photo.

This course is well suited for masters students at the department of Biology interested in biological modelling, how models work and what they are good for. It is suited for all biology students - we try to include examples from many fields of biology. Nature is complex and often several factors interact also in seemingly simple processes. Models are useful tools to disentangle complicated relationships, to build a comprehensive description of a process, or simply to present your own thoughts in an unambiguous way. Models are also necessary to make predictions about the future, test different scenarios, etc. In a good model one can manipulate one factor at a time, which is often impossible in nature.

This course can be taken in parallel with BIOS14 Processing and Analysis of Biological Data, as both are given part time.

The students shall, after completion of the course, be able to:

  • in general terms describe the usage, interpretation and limitations of models
  • solve mathematical tasks in basic algebra and analysis
  • do basic programming in R
  • describe the use of genetic algorithms and artificial neural networks in modelling
  • design a model of a biological system, given a specific task or question
  • fit a model to data
  • use mathematical and numerical methods to analyse simple dynamic, statistic or probabilistic models, such as stability analysis, optimization or risk analysis.


During the course there are a number of compulsory exercises and a written exam


Lotta Persmark, Study advisor, biology and bioinformatics

Telephone: +46 46 222 37 28
EmailLotta [dot] Persmark [at] biol [dot] lu [dot] se (Lotta[dot]Persmark[at]biol[dot]lu[dot]se)