Advanced Human Genetics

Course Number: 
Course Type: 
Currently Offered: 
Instructor (MCB Faculty): 
King, Mary-Claire
Course Description: 
The course has four main themes, each of which will be explored for approximately two weeks using case studies from the literature, lectures, and a problem set:
  • Genomic mapping and gene discovery
  • Genome structure and analysis
  • Human cancer genetics
  • Human diversity and evolution
Learning Objectives: 
At the end of the quarter, you should be able to:
  • Understand central concepts of current human genetics and genomic analysis
  • Critically analyze genomic data using publicly available online resources, and
  • Read the primary literature in human genetics and genomics.
Course requirements, examinations and grading: 
There will be two exams: a midterm and a final. The final will be slightly longer than the midterm and worth proportionally more of the course grade. The final will be cumulative in the sense that the material builds on concepts established at the beginning of the course, but will emphasize material in the second half of the quarter. Both exams will be closed book.
Four problem sets will be assigned and graded. The problem sets are designed to deepen your understanding of the material by applying modern analytic techniques to genetic problems. They will sometimes include Internet-based exercises that involve the use of online genomic tools. All problem sets must be handed in at the beginning of class on the due date.
The grades for this course are determined from the problem sets, midterm exam, and final exam, in the following proportions:
Problem sets 250 points total
Midterm exam 100 points
Final exam 150 points
Total 500 points

Course web site:

Sample Schedule:
Areas of Interest: 
Genetics, Genomics & Evolution
Elective Area: 
Genetics, Genomics & Evolution