About this course

In their struggle for survival, organisms have to adapt continuously to changes in their abiotic and biotic environment. This course focuses on the molecular mechanisms and consequences of these adaptations for individual organisms and interactions among organisms. Attention will be paid to various (a)biotic factors including temperature, drought, feeding conditions, photoperiodicity, intraspecific competition, symbiosis and parasitism. Common mechanisms and key concepts across kingdoms underlying adaptation and plasticity will be analysed in depth. Examples will be shown how environmental conditions affect signal transduction pathways leading to adaptive changes in ecology, behaviour and phenology.

Learning outcomes

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:

  • Explain adaptation mechanisms of organisms in response to biotic and abiotic stress factors, and how these affect their ecology
  • Give examples of common patterns across kingdoms underlying adaptation and plasticity
  • Translate the effects of changing environmental conditions into adaptations in behaviour, phenology, and ecology
  • Perform experiments in ecophysiology
  • Interpret data from experiments in ecophysiology
  • Motivate an experiment on an ecophysiological topic

Required prior knowledge

Mandatory Knowledge:
ZSS06100 Laboratory Safety
Assumed Knowledge:
PEN10503 Ecology I;
PEN20503 Ecology II;
CBI10306 Celbiology.

Link to more information

If anything remains unclear, please check the FAQ of Wageningen University.


  • Start date

    2 September 2024

    • Ends
      25 October 2024
    • Term *
      Period 1
    • Location
    • Instruction language
    • Register between
      1 Jun, 00:00 - 4 Aug 2024
These offerings are valid for students of Utrecht University