Credit points: 15

Subject outline

This subject covers the evolution, biology and ecology of Australian terrestrial fauna. It will introduce different phyla, with a particular emphasis on Arthropoda and Chordata, how they differ in form and function, and in the use of keys for identifying them. The taxa considered include: insects, spiders, reptiles, amphibians, birds and mammals. The unit places a strong emphasis on examining evolutionary processes and how this has contributed to diversity. In so doing, students will be introduced to important biogeographical and ecological concepts and processes that are relevant to Australian fauna. Practical classes involve identification of major invertebrate and vertebrate groups and make use of reserves managed by the University or Parks Victoria. They will introduce students to field survey techniques used in terrestrial and aquatic habitats and the appropriate presentation of invertebrate collections.

SchoolLife Sciences

Credit points15

Subject Co-ordinatorRichard Peters

Available to Study Abroad/Exchange StudentsYes

Subject year levelYear Level 2 - UG

Available as ElectiveNo

Learning ActivitiesN/A

Capstone subjectNo

Subject particulars

Subject rules



Incompatible subjectsN/A

Equivalent subjectsN/A

Quota Management StrategyMerit based quota management

Quota-conditions or rulesBased on academic performance in BIO1EEB.

Special conditionsN/A

Minimum credit point requirementN/A

Assumed knowledgeN/A

Career Ready


Work-based learningNo

Self sourced or Uni sourcedN/A

Entire subject or partial subjectN/A

Total hours/days requiredN/A

Location of WBL activity (region)N/A

WBL addtional requirementsN/A

Graduate capabilities & intended learning outcomes

Graduate Capabilities

Intended Learning Outcomes

01. Apply key morphological features to distinguish the major animal groups in Australia and related evolutionary processes.
02. Define and explain key concepts in Animal Ecology.
03. Classify Australian animals into taxa using physical characteristics and/or dichotomous keys.
04. Apply fauna survey techniques to create reference collections of insects and other fauna.
05. Communicate the outcomes of fauna surveys in writing.

Subject options

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Start date between: and    Key dates

Melbourne (Bundoora), 2021, Semester 1, Day


Online enrolmentYes

Maximum enrolment size210

Subject Instance Co-ordinatorRichard Peters

Class requirements

LectureWeek: 10 - 22
Two 1.00 hour lecture per week on weekdays during the day from week 10 to week 22 and delivered via face-to-face.

PracticalWeek: 10 - 22
One 3.00 hours practical per week on weekdays during the day from week 10 to week 22 and delivered via face-to-face.


Assessment elementCommentsCategoryContributionHurdle% ILO*
Two online quizzes Equivalent to 1000 wordsN/AN/AN/ANo25 SILO1, SILO2
1-hour written theory exam Equivalent to 1000 wordsN/AN/AN/ANo25 SILO1, SILO2, SILO3
Practical class worksheets Equivalent to 400 wordsN/AN/AN/ANo10 SILO3, SILO4, SILO5
Insect collection (specimen or pictorial) Equivalent to 1000 wordsN/AN/AN/ANo20 SILO3, SILO4
Laboratory report Equivalent to 1000 wordsN/AN/AN/ANo20 SILO3, SILO4, SILO5