• Offered by School of Archaeology and Anthropology
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Classification Transitional
  • Course subject Biological Anthropology
  • Areas of interest Biological Anthropology, Zoology, Evolution and Ecology, Biology
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Dr Katharine Balolia
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Co-taught Course
  • Offered in First Semester 2019
    See Future Offerings

The course begins with surveying general principles of evolution, biodiversity and systematics, species theory, phylogeny reconstruction and biogeography, and progresses to a consideration of how these apply in turn to lemurs, lorises and galagos, tarsiers, New and Old World monkeys, and apes. Students will be expected to be able to recognise and characterise all the main groups of primates. In this course, we will also examine dietary, locomotor and sensory adaptations in primates and will cover aspects of the primate fossil record.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Identify the major groups of living primates, all the species in at least one of the groups and the main fossil primate taxa known from each primate group;
  2. Apply the rules of nomenclature in a way that organises their knowledge of primates;
  3. Understand the main concepts of cladistics and phylogenetics and construct phylogenetic hypotheses from different sources of evidence;
  4. Evaluate published claims about Primate taxonomy and biogeography and why these are important for classifying known primate fossils;
  5. Understand and assess the various meanings given to the concept of species, and how these may be recognised in the primate fossil record.

Indicative Assessment

Annotated bibliography relevant to proposed essay, 1500 words (10%) [Learning Outcome 3-5]
Major essay, 3500 words (50%) [Learning Outcome 3-5]
Take-home test, 48 hours (25%) [Learning Outcomes 1, 2, 5]
Tutorial presentation, 30 min (10%) [Learning Outcomes 2-5]
Tutorial participation (5%) [Learning Outcomes 1, 2, 4]

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.


130 hours of total student learning time made up from:
a) 36 hours of contact over 12 weeks: 24 hours of lectures and 12 hours of tutorials and online activities; and
b) 94 hours of independent student research, reading and writing.

Requisite and Incompatibility

Incompatible with BIAN6012 or BIAN2126.

Prescribed Texts

Fleagle, J. G. (2013). Primate Adaptation and Evolution: 3rd Edition. Academic Press.


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:
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.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2019 $3840
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2019 $5460
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

First Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
4209 25 Feb 2019 04 Mar 2019 31 Mar 2019 31 May 2019 In Person View

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