PhD course - Phylogenetics: principles & methods. 23 – 26 April 2018, Forum, Wageningen University

The aim of this course is to present both the theoretical background as well as a hands-on approach to phylogenetic reconstruction. The course will treat current software and platforms, and will focus on how phylogenetic analysis may help in testing hypotheses in the student’s own project.

There will be a daily mixture of lectures in the morning and practical sessions in the afternoon. Scope and topics include:

• phylogenetics, focussing on basic principles and aiming at PhD students who should be able to understand (and publish) phylogenetic studies after completing this course
• estimating sequence divergence: how does it work and what model is best?
• using likelihood and posterior probability as criteria in tree building
• partitioning data sets and analyses
• prior setting, Markov Chains & interpretation of such results
• network construction
• statistical approaches to inferring trends on phylogenetic trees, including molecular dating analysis using relaxed clock models

We will also look at phylogenomics and how scaling up to such dimensions is possible, but will not offer actual hands-on phylogenomics practicals. Each course day will be concluded with brief PhD project-presentations by the students, allowing ample discussion on analytical approach. Students, whom we expect to have some basic understanding of both molecular biology and systematic theory, will have the opportunity to bring their own DNA sequence alignments for analysis, otherwise datasets will be provided in the course. A few weeks prior to the start of the course you will receive some literature, some of which we will consider familiar to you before the course starts.

€200,- for PhD students with approved iTSP’s and registered VLAG/EPS (or other) postdocs
€300,- for University staff/non-profit
€500,- for Industry

Number of participants: max 12

Registration: Registrations should be accompanied by a short CV (indicating the nature and stage of your research project) can be sent to till 9 april. In principle, priority will be given to PhD’s of the Graduate Schools EPS and Biodiversity that are in the possession of an approved Training & Supervision Plan. The number of course participants is set to 12, and in case of exceeding numbers of registrations, the course organizers will make a selection and inform you in time whether you can attend and how to pay the course fees. Please do not pay the fees until you know you will attend the course!