MIT 1.018/7.30/12.031 Fundamentals of Ecology (UG)
(Fall 2021)
Fundamentals of ecology, considering Earth as an integrated dynamic living system. Coevolution of the biosphere and geosphere, biogeochemical cycles, metabolic diversity, primary productivity, competition and the niche, trophic dynamics and food webs, population growth, and limiting factors. Population modeling, global carbon cycle, climate change, geoengineering, theories of resource competition and mutualism, allometric scaling, ecological genomics, niche theory, human population growth. Applied ecology.

Co-taught with: Dave Des Marais

MIT 12.849/12.349 Mechanisms and Models of the Global Carbon Cycle (G/UG)
(Spring 2022)
Addresses changes in the ocean, terrestrial biosphere and rocks modulation of atmospheric carbon dioxide on time scales from months to millions of years. Includes feedbacks between the carbon cycle and climate. Combines hands-on data analysis with the formulation of simple models rooted in basic physical, chemical, and biological principles. Students create individual “toy” global carbon cycle models.

MIT 12.S593 Phytoplankton: from Cellular Physiology to Global Ecology
(new in Fall 2021)
Special seminar in phytoplankton physiology. Marine phytoplankton are responsible for half of the world’s primary production. They are functionally and taxonomically extremely diverse. In addition to photosynthesis, many participate in complex trophic lifestyles and have evolved elegant solutions to the complexities of resource availability and mortality. We will read and discuss a series of classic papers on the physiology and ecology of marine phytoplankton encompassing the relationships between population growth and resource availability, predator-prey interactions, resource allocation and elemental composition, how competition and mutualism shape populations, and the application of remote sensing and numerical simulations in studies of phytoplankton. Weekly discussions will center around a focal journal article will be accompanied by background readings to reinforce key concepts. This course is best suited for graduate students, but undergraduates are encouraged to seek instructor permission if interested.

Teaching Assistant: Arianna Krinos