Using dinosaurs as exemplars, this course teaches aspects of comparative, functional, and developmental morphology, macroevolution, macroecology, and phylogenetic systematics. Lab dissections will explore vertebrate anatomy. Extensive collections and exhibits of the Redpath Museum will be used. The material is presented in seven major sections.
Part 1: Origins | Evolutionary origins of dinosaurs.
Part 2: Organs | Comparative and functional anatomy.
Part 3: Evolution & Ecology | Principles of phylogenetic systematics, biogeography, palaeomacroecology.
Part 4: Dinosaur diversity | A survey of all taxonomic groups of non-avian dinosaurs.
Part 5: Transitions | The origin of birds: ecology, biomechanics, and developmental biology.
Part 6: Bird diversity | A survey of all taxonomic groups of birds.
Part 7: Conclusions | Future directions in dinosaur research.