Evolution: Are you related to a sea monster?

Time to complete course: 29 min.

About the Evolution Virtual Lab Simulation

Explore the evolution of a sea monster! In this simulation, you will learn about evolution and population genetics. Follow the evolution of a single cell to a 30-meter long blue whale.

Population genetics

How did a small wolf-like mammal with hooves turn into a large whale? From a single mutation to an allele stuck in a population of Pakicetus, you will learn about the Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium, explore allele frequency over multiple generations, and how natural selection impacts an island population of Pakicetus.

Next-generation sequencing

Use a next-generation sequencing machine to analyze the genetic sequence of a sea monster to discover it’s evolutionary ancestry. Compare the genetic sequence with that of different known sequences to identify the species of a sea monster.

You will then explore the genetic heritance of the creature. How did evolution help a small, four-legged land dweller to become the largest animal to ever swim the oceans?

Test the evolutionary theory

Using modern techniques, you will do research on what seems to be a sea monster that has washed up on a beach. You will dive into the evolutionary processes of similar creatures of the sea to find out if they might be related. Is the sea monster really what it seems?

Get Started Now

Dive into the evolution of whales: from a sequence of nucleotides to a 30-meter long blue whale. Follow the path of a gene from a rare mutation to being stuck in a population through natural disasters and competition.

Techniques In Lab

  • NGS
  • Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium
  • Genetic drift
  • Phylogenetic interpretation

Learning Objectives

At the end of this simulation, you will be able to…

  • Understand how populations evolve by adapting to their environment
  • Understand the basic mechanisms of evolution
  • Understand evolution as the foundation of biology and show evidence for it
  • Use DNA sequencing and phylogenetic trees to identify an unknown creature
  • Deal with common misconceptions about the theory of evolution

Screenshots of Evolution Virtual Lab Simulation


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