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Mathematical Models in Biology

Module MA3601

This Module is offered by Department of Mathematics.

This module handbook serves to describe contents, learning outcome, methods and examination type as well as linking to current dates for courses and module examination in the respective sections.

Module version of SS 2021 (current)

There are historic module descriptions of this module. A module description is valid until replaced by a newer one.

Whether the module’s courses are offered during a specific semester is listed in the section Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature below.

available module versions
SS 2021SS 2020SS 2019SS 2012WS 2011/2

Basic Information

MA3601 is a semester module in English language at Master’s level which is offered in winter semester.

This Module is included in the following catalogues within the study programs in physics.

  • Catalogue of non-physics elective courses
Total workloadContact hoursCredits (ECTS)
270 h 90 h 9 CP

Content, Learning Outcome and Preconditions


Introduction in theory and application of dynamical systems and stochastic processes: linear compartmental models, Markov-chains, Galton-Watson processes, birth-death-processes, population models, spatial models and age structured models.

Learning Outcome

This module imparts the ability to formulate mathematical models for biological systems on the basis of analytic, stochastic or discrete mathematical structures. The emphasis of the module is to teach the understanding of the importance for different model approaches for one single biological system. At the end of the module, the student is able to evaluate the connection of different results related to different model approaches (stochastic/deterministic, discrete/continuous) and to choose the appropriate level for the description of the system under observation.


MA1001 Analysis 1, MA1002 Analysis 2, MA1101 Linear Algebra and Discrete Structures 1, MA1102 Linear Algebra and Discrete Structures 2, MA1401 Introduction to Probability Theory
Bachelor 2019: MA0001 Analysis 1, MA0002 Analysis 2, MA0004 Linear Algebra 1, MA0005 Linear Algebra 2 and Discrete Structures, MA0009 Introduction to Probability Theory and Statistics

Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature

Courses and Schedule

VO 4 Mathematical Models in Biology 1 Müller, J. Wed, 08:30–10:00, MI HS3
Fri, 08:30–10:00, MI HS3
Fri, 14:00–16:00, MI 02.04.011
and singular or moved dates
UE 2 Exercises for Mathematical Models in Biology 1 John, S. Müller, J. dates in groups documents

Learning and Teaching Methods

lecture, exercise course, self study exercises




J.D. Murray, Mathematical Biology. Springer-Verlag, 3rd ed. in 2 vols.:
Mathematical Biology: I. An Introduction, 2002;
Mathematical Biology: II. Spatial Models and Biomedical Applications, 2003;
P. Jagers: Branching Processes With Biological Applications. Wiley, London 1975

Module Exam

Description of exams and course work

The module examination is based on a written exam (60-90 minutes) or an oral exam (20-30 minutes). Students have to understand basic analytic, stochastic and discrete structures to model biological systems and can evaluate the connection of different results related to different model approaches. They are able to choose the appropriate models.

Exam Repetition

The exam may be repeated at the end of the semester.

Current exam dates

Currently TUMonline lists the following exam dates. In addition to the general information above please refer to the current information given during the course.

Mathematical Models in Biology
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