Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Area of Study
Taught In English
Recommended U.S. Semester Credits4
Recommended U.S. Quarter Units3
Hours & Credits
The aim of this course is to introduce students to behavior genetics as applied to psychological variables. The students will learn what questions behavior genetics addresses, and how these questions are answered using the classical twin design, and some extensions of this design. The course includes practicals in which you will analyze real and simulated twin data using the R library OpenMx.
This course will include explanation of the following:
1) The biometric model, underlying the twin and family designs which are used to infer the role of genetic and environmental effects from family resemblance).
2) Univariate and multivariate modeling of twin data using OpenMx (an R library) in the programming environment R
3) The meaning of gene-environment interplay (genotype X environment interaction, and genotype -environment correlation) and to model these in the classical twin design.
4) Detailed discussions of applied papers and papers concerns the statistical background of the twin design.
Lectures and computer practicals
TYPE OF ASSESSMENT
A exam consisting of open and multiple choice questions and take-home computer assignments which are based directly on the computer practicals.
Please note: this course includes a statistical component. You are expected to have a basic practical understand of correlation, linear regression and basic descriptive statistics, such as means, variance, standard deviation. Some experience in the use of statistical programs like SPSS is useful. Knowledge of R is an advantage. However, the practicals include explanation of R (using the R studio interface).
Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.
Some courses may require additional fees.