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Population Biology Graduate Group

Photo: Alternate description of photo goes here

Gray chameleon (Panther chameleon, Furcifer pardalis) is from Beza Mahafaly, Madagascar. Green chameleon (Flap-necked chameleon, Chamaeleo dilepsis) is in Lake Malawi National Park, Malawi. Photos courtesy of Chris Martin

About Our Program


Population biology is an interdisciplinary field that combines the most advanced techniques in ecology, systematics, genetics, and mathematical or statistical analysis. We work near the interface between ecology, the study of interactions between organisms and their environment, and evolutionary biology, which aims to understand how populations, species and species characteristics evolve. The results provide fundamental knowledge that increases our understanding of processes that cause populations to change and contributes to the development of effective solutions to such problems as overcrowding and species extinction.

The University of California at Davis offers a graduate program in Population Biology which leads to a Ph.D. Areas of specialization include population growth, structure and dynamics (basic and applied); population interactions (competition, predation, parasitism, and mutualism); community ecology; food webs; biogeography; behavioral and physiological ecology; life-history strategies; systematics; evolution; population and quantitative genetics; and molecular evolution. We are recognized as one of the nations leading programs in the subject of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology.

UC-Davis is particularly strong in the biological sciences. In addition to the veterinary and medical schools, there are over 50 biological science departments (ranging from nematology and plant pathology to epidemiology and enology), divisions and graduate groups on campus, and more than half of the faculty are in biological fields. This wealth of expertise greatly facilitates graduate education in biology. Students have access to a wide range of courses and can consult with experts in almost any area.

Population Biology:


Bylaws (Graduate Council Approved)

Compensation Plan (Funding)

Curriculum (Graduate Council Approved 1999)

Curriculum / Degree Requirements (Graduate Council Approved 2018)

Faculty Directory and Faculty by Research

Mentoring Guidelines

Reputation and Rankings: Why UC Davis Graduate Studies?

Student Handbook:The Platypus Guide to the Population Biology Graduate Group