Subject details

At the completion of this subject students will be able to:

  1. Know characteristics of important groups of animals
  2. Recognise unknown animals to major groups (phylum, order or family)
  3. Identify relevant structures for critical body processes and reproduction
  4. Identify unknown animals to family, genus (or species) using keys and other aids
  5. Work independently and in teams to achieve these goals.
  • Topics
    • Animal Classification and phylogeny
    • Sponges and Cnidaria
    • Worms (flatworms, roundworms, segmented worms)
    • Molluscs
    • Arthropods - Insects, Spiders, Crustaceans, etc.
    • Echinoderms and Chordates, Echinoderms and Invertebrate Chordates
    • Fishes
    • Amphibians and Reptiles
    • Birds
    • Mammals
    • Lesser phyla
    • Animal Evolution
  • Study resources
    • Print Materials
      • Welcome letter
    • Online Materials
      • Printable format materials
      • Quizzes
      • Online Assessment
      • Resources and Links
      • Online Assessment
    • Other Materials
      • Practicum

Entry Requirements


This is an introductory subject requiring no formal prerequisites but students will find that knowledge of biology and chemistry at VCE level will be an advantage.

Special requirements

  • OtherDetails -

    Practical of five half days in Melbourne

Gain an understanding of animal identification for future employment in agricultural, horticultural and environmental areas. You will finish the unit being able to examine animal structure and identify animals in phylum or better level using appropriate techniques. You will study invertebrates (sponges, cnidarian, flatworms, molluscs, annelids, anthropods, nematodes, echinoderms, etc.) and the vertebrates (fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals). You will also learn about lifecycles, structure, function and reasons for importance of different groups of animals.

This unit requires you to attend an on-campus practical of five half-days in Melbourne.

  • Assignment 1 - Quizzes (20%)
  • Assignment 2 - Practicum Reports (40%)
  • Assignment 3 - Invigilated Exam (40%)

Textbooks are subject to change within the academic year. Students are advised to purchase their books no earlier than one to two months before the start of a subject

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