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Morphological and Molecular Analysis of Plant Phylogeny and Diversity

Author(s): Leah Dudley1, J. Phil Gibson2

1. East Central University 2. University of Oklahoma

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In this lab, students perform phylogenetic analyses on morphological and molecular data, and compare.

Licensed under CC Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International according to these terms

Version 1.0.0 - published on 16 May 2018 doi:10.25334/Q4PT2K - cite this

Adapted from: Morphological and Molecular Analysis of Plant Phylogeny and Diversity v 1.0


This laboratory module explores plant diversity through 1) plant morphological and anatomical data and 2) molecular data. The combination of analyses using different forms of data will promote deeper understanding of important evolutionary innovations, patterns of diversity, and major trends in plant evolution. In this exercise, you will collect morphological data to construct an initial phylogeny of the study organisms that describes broad patterns of trait evolution among taxa. Next, you will compare your data with molecular data based on RuBisCo. You will then use the data from the different data sets to develop a consensus phylogeny to describe relationships among taxa and patterns of trait evolution. Comparisons of phylogenies also provides an opportunity for critical analysis of phylogenetic data interpretation.


I have combined the FMN lab with the Botanical Phylo-Cards into one botany lab. This is meant for a 2hr lab, but I could see it easily expanding to 3. The lab is written as a Google Doc with some teacher note comments.

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