Subject Descriptions - Subject Information


Calendar: 2017 Undergraduate
Faculty: Faculty of Science, Medicine and Health
Department: School of Biological Sciences



Subject Information
Subject Code BIOL104
Subject Name Evolution, Biodiversity and Environment
Credit Points 6
Pre-Requisites Nil
Co-Requisites Nil
Restrictions Nil
Equivalence Not to count for credit with BIOL352.
Assessment Microscopes Quiz 2%; Statistics Quiz 3%; Major Assignment - Insect Project 10%; Major Assignment Nest Report 10%; Practical Mini-quizzes 10%; Mid-session Theory Quiz 10%; Practical Examination 20%; Theory Examination 35%.
General Subject Yes.

Subject Description
This subject aims to provide students with a comprehensive introduction to whole organism biology, from species to populations, communities and ecosystems. Specifically, the subject explores the identity, anatomical and life-history characteristics of the main groups of organisms, their patterns of diversity across Earth, the processes of evolution and speciation, ecology and conservation biology. In addition, through a series of practical and tutorial classes, the subject equips students with an understanding of the scientific process, ways in which experiments are designed and implemented, the processes of data collection, analysis and hypothesis testing, and scientific writing.


Subject Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this subject, students will be able to:
1. have a clear perception of the diversity of organisms present in nature;
2. recognise the anatomical and life-history characteristics of the major groups of organisms;
3. understand the operation of the evolutionary processes which have combined to produce the diversity;
4. understand the principles of intrinsic population growth and how it provides the potential for natural selection;
5. understand the way in which populations of different organisms combine to form communities, and be aware of the nature of the interactions which occur among organisms in a community;
6. understand the interactions between the physical and biotic components of ecosystems, and understand the importance of nutrient cycling and energy flow in ecosystem function;
7. design an experiment, take replicate samples, analyse results and present a concise, accurate scientific report; and be aware of some of the social and ethical implications of research in biology.
8. understand the fundamental principles of microscopy and be able to construct scientific diagrams as records of microscopic organisms

Extra Information
Generic Extra Information:
NOTE: The use of animals, animal tissues or animal-derived products (such as sera) is inherent and unavoidable, in order to achieve specific learning objectives. Students with conscientious objections to that use should not enrol in this subject.