The course has a maximum 5* rating and has been taken by learners from 120+ countries. The course was a Finalist of the 2018 edX Prize for Exceptional Contributions in Online Teaching and Learning and received an award for Teaching Innovation in E-Learning from the University of Hong Kong’s Faculty of Science.
Ever wondered what it would be like to live in the world of dinosaurs? Yes? Well here’s your chance!
Using the Late Cretaceous fossil site of Erlian, China as an example, we bring you to the Gobi desert, as well as leading international museums and institutions to find out how we reconstruct dinosaur ecosystems.
This biology and life science course will focus on the knowledge we can gain from studying animals and plants. You will learn about a dinosaur’s biology including their appearance, classification and diet. We will take a close look at the mostly meat eating theropod dinosaurs, as well as the main plant eating dinosaurs, the sauropodomorphs and ornithischians. At the end of the course, you will learn how palaeontologists use fossil and modern evidence to reconstruct dinosaurs and their ecosystems.
The course is brought to life with the help of award-winning palaeoartist Julius T. Csotonyi and is led by HKU’s vertebrate palaeontologist Dr Michael Pittman in collaboration with his esteemed colleague Professor Xu Xing of the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Beijing. A range of guests from around the World will also share their expertise during the course.
參加我們的免費網上學習課程，感受與恐龍同行的震撼! 以中國二連浩特白堊紀晚期的化石地層作為一個例子, 我們將帶您來到戈壁沙漠、著名國際博物館及研究所去探究我們如何重建恐龍的生態系統。此生物及生命科學課程著重於研究動物和植物。您將會認到識恐龍生物學，包括恐龍的外觀、分類和食物。我們將關注近乎全肉食性的獸腳類恐龍，以及主要的草食性恐龍、蜥腳形亞目和鳥臀目恐龍。在本課程的末段, 您將會了解到古生物學家如何運用化石和現代的證據來重建恐龍和牠們的生態系統。本課程有賴屢獲殊榮的古生物復原畫家Julius T. Csotonyi的幫助才得以面世,並由香港大學古脊椎動物學家文嘉棋博士及北京古脊椎動物與古人類研究所徐星教授共同領導。世界各地不同領域的專家也將在本課程中分享他們的專業知識。
Week 1: Course overview and introduction to dinosaurs Overview of the course, including an introduction to the Late Cretaceous course field site in Erlian, China. Introduction to dinosaur biology from their appearance, classification and diet to their evolution and extinction.
Weeks 2 & 3: Meat eating dinosaurs - theropods A survey of the theropod dinosaurs discovered in Erlian, including their biology and insights into the preserved ecosystem.
Week 4: Plant eating dinosaurs - sauropodomorph and ornithischian dinosaurs A survey of Erlian’s herbivores from the dominant hadrosaur ornithischian dinosaurs to rarer sauropodomorph and non-hadrosaur ornithischian dinosaurs. Learn what they tell us about herbivore biology at the time and about the local ecosystem.
Week 5: Living with dinosaurs A survey of the non-dinosaur reptiles, mammals, fish and invertebrates that lived with the dinosaurs of Erlian. What roles did they play in this ecosystem?
Week 6: Bringing dinosaurs and their ecosystems to life - diet, behaviour and growth and course summary Find out what evidence palaeontologists use to bring dinosaurs to life in seemingly impossible ways. Also, a summary of the entire course.
completed this course and found the course difficulty to be easy.
I've taken paleontological courses before, but this one is different from the usual 20-minutes-long videos. Topics are brought up in 1-3 minute long videos, enough to keep you interested, but yet full of information. Practice quizzes were also helpful, and final quizzes were easy enough after watching the videos and solving the practice quizzes. I liked the real-life problems and applications, lab videos, and recent discoveries - this course gives you the latest updates in form of roundup videos, and discusses the most interesting forum questions as well, so it's easy to get and stay involved. All in all, a great course, I'd like to see a sequel.