The course prepares the students to deal with the analysis of the interactions that determine the distribution and abundance of organisms (particularly marine invertebrates) in the geological past in order to understand the evolution of the ecosystems in deep time.
To recognize the biotic and abiotic factors that have governed the distribution of organisms in the geologic past. The student must be able to recognize the main biotic and abiotic factors that led to the formation of a fossil association, reconstructing its living environment.
History of paleoecology. Interactions among biosphere, atmosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere. Factors that regulate the distribution of fossil organisms. Abiotic factors. Biotic factors. Taphonomy. Sampling methodologies. Functional morphology. Population dynamics. Survival curves. Community analysis. Biodiversity. Study of the Pachycyrtella bed (Permian, Oman). Field excursion (Albenza, Stirone or Arda).