MEWG members produce and deliver different workshops covering many molecular ecology topics. MEWG workshops have been offered at national and state chapter TWS meetings, as well as TWS webinars.

Interested in hosting your own MEWG workshop? 

MEWG workshop materials are available upon request for MEWG members. Browse our developed workshops below and fill out the request form below if you are interested in using our materials in your own molecular ecology workshop or outreach. 

Do the Genomics: An introductory course in analyzing genomic data in R

Overview: Genomics has revolutionized the fields of conservation genetics and molecular ecology. Genomic datasets from non-model organisms are now easier and more cost efficient to generate, while being able to explore new questions where traditional genetic markers were limited. However, a significant hurdle to analyzing genomic datasets is the bioinformatic knowledge required. The goal of this workshop is to provide a basic overview of how to analyze genomic data sets in R; specifically covering importing data sets, variant filtering, and basic population genetic analyses. Participants are encouraged, but not required, to have a basic understanding of R and bring their own laptops.

An Overview of Genomic Approaches for Wildlife and Conservation Management 

Overview: The field of wildlife genetics is being transformed by new genomic methods. The goal of this workshop is to provide an overview of genomic methods that can be used to address research questions in wildlife ecology, conservation, and management. Specifically, we will cover the topics of whole genome sequencing, reduced representation sequencing, identifying adaptive loci, single nucleotide polymorphism genotyping panels, eDNA assays, eDNA metabarcoding, and diet metabarcoding. We will include examples of how these new methods are being used to identify conservation and management units, assess genetic diversity and gene flow, monitor biodiversity, detect invasive species, and understand adaptation.

Do the Genetics 101: Matching Techniques and Technologies to Research Questions in Wildlife Genetics

Workshop abstract: Do you want to ‘do the genetics’ on your study population?  But you’re not even entirely sure what that might entail?  The Molecular Ecology Working Group has crafted a workshop for you – the new grad student embarking on wildlife genetics research, the agency professional needing answers to genetic questions to inform management, the early career scientist looking to expand into new technologies.  We will provide an overview of current genetic techniques (including marker types, lab technologies, analytical packages) with particular focus on what techniques are most appropriate to answering different questions in wildlife ecology, conservation, and management.  We will also discuss field sampling methods and sample designs well-suited to addressing different questions.  The workshop will include a hands-on study design session in which panel members will work with individuals or small groups to design a study targeted at a species and question of interest. Participants are encouraged to bring general information about their study species/system of interest, so that they can get the most out of this session.

Workshop participants will come away with several concrete products including a consumers’ guide for collaborating with genetics labs, a resource guide of recommended analytical programs, and a study design for their project of interest facilitated by our workshop panel.    


Choose Your Own Adventure In Molecular Ecology 

Overview: Join us for an interactive webinar that will introduce TWS’s Molecular Ecology Working Group. The webinar will briefly showcase the working group members’ research and activities, as well as introduce molecular ecology topics such as new biomonitoring techniques, the use of -omics in wildlife management, disease tracking based on population identification (e.g., chronic wasting disease), and an overview of the most frequently asked wildlife genetics questions. After introductions, we’ll start the fun! The audience will ‘choose their own adventure' by selecting which topics and questions our panel of experts will discuss in more detail. Join us for an in-depth introduction and wide-ranging conversation about the role genetics plays in wildlife management. 

Outline: topics are introduced, then audience poll to lead further discussions