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Wildlife and Biodiversity

WB1This profile covers the ecology and conservation biology of wildlife and biodiversity, with a focus on terrestrial ecosystems. W&B‘s focus is on ecological research in a conservation context, and thus, is aiming at students interested in the  interface between science and its application.

Module contents range from theory and research methods to field work, data analysis and scientific writing. The first (winter) semester provides a conceptual and analytical basis; it introduces the concept of biodiversity and the approach of conservation biology, and provides the statistical skills required for data analysis. In the following summer, students will spend a lot of time in the field, learning and applying methods in wildlife research, behavioural ecology, and experimental ecology, and will experience the challenges of protected area management on site. In the third semester, students are introduced to approaches of integrating conservation into forest management and discuss ongoing research and new publications in the field of wildlife ecology and biodiversity conservation.

Important facts about this study profile

Language: EnglishWB2

Teaching form: on-campus

Pace of study: fulltime

Study location: Freiburg

Start: only in winter term

Duration: 4 Semester

Application periode: march 20th - may 15th

ECTS: 120 ECTS (80ECTS modules, 10 ECTS Internship, 30ECTS Thesis)

Costs: 161 semester fees, 1.500€ study fees (only non-EU students!)


  • Experts in wildlife and biodiversity science are urgently needed for better conservation practice
  • Based on the conceptual foundations of conservation biology, students design, conduct and analyze field studies, and summarize and discuss research for conservation
  • Excursions with own field work provide practical on-site experience in wildlife and biodiversity research and management


Programme overview Icon Finger.png pdf


Module details

 1) Environmental Statistics

    • introductory module beyond multiple regression
    • standard machine-learning approaches in R or Python
    • joint module with students from other profile tracks

2) Analysis of biodiversity data

    • Biodiversity maesures
    • Analyzing species richness and species community composition
    • Analysis of biodiversity data in R

3) Biodiversity and Conservation Biology

    • Biodiversity as a concept
    • Conservation Biology as a crisis discipline
    • Research as a basis for conservation

4) Genetic and genomic methods in forest management and conservation

    • Population genetics of forest tree
    • Analysis of genetic data - in the lab and in R
    • Learn to present your results in oral and written form

5) Research in Wildlife Ecology

    • Overview on methods in wildlife research
    • Wildlife monitoring approaches
    • Data analysis and interpretation

6) Wildlife Behavioural Ecology

    • Understanding behaviour as adaptive
    • Study design and field work in the Italian Alps
    • Data analysis and report writing

7) Experimental Ecology

    • Experimental Design in ecological field research
    • Design and carry out your own research project
    • Learn to communicate your research research visually, in written and in oral form

8) Protected Area Management

    • Categories of protected areas
    • Planning and designing reserve systems
    • Social and cultural aspects

9) Conservation of Forest Biodiversity

    • Approaches to promote biodiversity in managed forests
    • Assessing the effectiveness of retention forestry
    • The societal and economic basis for conservation

10) Frontiers in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation Biology

  • Overview on current research fields
  • Data interpretation and discussion
  • Translation of research into management


Target Group

W&B is for students interested in animal ecology, in providing a scientific basis for conservation, and in the significance and conservation of biodiversity. W&B‘s focus is on ecological research in an applied context.


Career Opportunities

research (e.g., universities, research institutions, professional societies)

conservation (e.g. governmental institutions, (international) NGOs, protected area, consultancy companies).

excellent preparation for doctoral studies in applied ecology, animal ecology and conservation biology.





* BSc. Degree with grade point average of at least 2.5
* English C1
* 55 ECTS in natural sciences and ecology
     * Proof of floristic and faunistic species knowledge
     * Population ecology
* 15 ECTS in statistics and geomatics

Application periode: March 20th - May 15th

Application portal: HISinOne

further information: 

-> see "Application"


Coordinator & Contact


 Prof. Dr. Ilse Storch

Wildlife Ecology and Management