• Offered by Research School of Biology
  • ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
  • Course subject Biology
  • Areas of interest Biology
  • Academic career Postgraduate
  • Course convener
    • Dr Andras Keszei
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Co-taught Course BIOL1003
  • Offered in First Semester 2018
    See Future Offerings

This course aims to introduce some of the major concepts in the study of life, focussing on evolutionary and ecological questions. It assumes no previous qualifications in biology and, while this course is an important prerequisite for those majoring in biology, it is also designed for students not intending further study in biology. The program consists of four modules, as follows.
(a) Evolution - diversity and classification of life; evidence for evolution; natural selection and adaptation; speciation; evolutionary trees.
(b) Molecular Genetics - organisation and replication of genetic material; the mechanism and control of transcription and translation.
(c) Genetics of Inheritance - Chromosomes and cell division; patterns of inheritance and sex determination; population genetics; human genetics.
(d) Ecology - regulation and exploitation of populations; ecosystem energy and nutrient flow; species interactions; biodiversity; human impacts.
(e) Behavioural Ecology - evolutionary approach to studying animal behaviour; social behaviour; cooperation and altruism; sexual selection; mating systems; communication.
(f) Quantitative Biology - DNA and Protein sequence manipulation, similarity analysis, alignment, nucleotide and protein sequence database search.

Specific topics may differ from year to year. There will be laboratory and field practicals as well as tutorials to allow students to gain the basic skills needed to engage with the main topics.

Note: Graduate students attend joint classes with undergraduates but will be assessed separately

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
  1. Gain broad understanding of the evolutionary and ecological processes underlying life, relevant to understanding of modern biology and choice of later-year courses. This learning outcome is best achieved if students also take BIOL6036 ‘Molecular Biology', because an understanding of molecular processes complements the evolutionary and ecological perspective on life.
  2. Acquire knowledge and understanding of the processes of evolution, including natural selection, adaptation and speciation.
  3. Acquire knowledge and understanding of the processes of genetics, including DNA structure and function, cell replication, heritability and population genetics.
  4. Acquire knowledge and understanding of the processes of ecology, including biomes, species diversity, extinction, population ecology and life-history.
  5. Acquire knowledge and understanding of behavioural ecology, and how it uses an evolutionary, genetic and ecological framework to study animal behaviour.
  6. Gain experience in referencing scientific papers, presenting scientific data, development of directional hypotheses.
  7. Gain experience in working with biological sequences and public sequence databases.

Indicative Assessment

Assessment will be based on:
  • Mid-semester examination (28%) (LO 1-5)
  • Final examination (38%) (LO 1-5)
  • Assignments (20%) (LO 1-6)
  • Sequence analysis project (14%) (LO 3,6,7)

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.

Workload

Three lectures per week and up to 20 hours of tutorial sessions and practical classes

Requisite and Incompatibility

You will need to contact the Research School of Biology to request a permission code to enrol in this course.

Prescribed Texts

Campbell, Reece and Meyers Biology 11th Edition Australian Version. PLEASE NOTE: the text
available at the ANU Co-Op Bookshop contains an access code for Mastering Biology software
that will give you access to supplementary support.

Fees

Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Band 2
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

Units EFTSL
6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2018 $3660
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2018 $5160
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings and Dates

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only

First Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery
4766 19 Feb 2018 26 Feb 2018 31 Mar 2018 25 May 2018 In Person

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions