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Unit of study_

BIOL1006: Life and Evolution

Biology is an immensely diverse science. Biologists study life at all levels, from the fundamental building blocks (genes, proteins) to whole ecosystems in which myriads of species interact. Evolution is the unifying concept that runs through the life sciences, from the origin and diversification of life to understanding behaviour, to dealing with disease. Evolution through natural selection is the framework in biology in which specific details make sense. This unit explores how new species continue to arise while others go extinct and discusses the role of mutations as the raw material on which selection acts. It explains how information is transferred between generations through DNA, RNA and proteins, transformations which affect all aspects of biological form and function. Science builds and organises knowledge of life and evolution in the form of testable hypotheses. You will participate in inquiry-led practical classes investigating single-celled organisms and the diversity of form and function in plants and animals. By doing this unit of study, you will develop the ability to examine novel biological systems and understand the complex processes that have shaped those systems.

Code BIOL1006
Academic unit Life and Environmental Sciences Academic Operations
Credit points 6
BIOL1001 or BIOL1911 or BIOL1991 or BIOL1906 or BIOL1996
Assumed knowledge:
HSC Biology. Students who have not completed HSC Biology (or equivalent) are strongly advised to take the Biology Bridging Course (offered in February)

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. explain the process of evolution as the unifying theory in biology
  • LO2. describe genes as the functional units of information and explain how genes transfer biological information from one generation to the next
  • LO3. explain how biological information is expressed (from DNA to RNA and then to protein) and how this, in turn, affects biological form and function
  • LO4. describe different types of mutations, how they regulate inheritance and are selected
  • LO5. describe and explain Mendelian inheritance and apply this to solve genetics problems
  • LO6. articulate an understanding of the temporal and spatial scale of the evolutionary process
  • LO7. integrate ideas about the commonality of life systems and their complexity
  • LO8. propose and test hypotheses to explain biological phenomena
  • LO9. analyse quantitative data to evaluate explanations for biological patterns
  • LO10. formulate explanations, through written and verbal means, to communicate to a range of audiences
  • LO11. work independently and collaboratively
  • LO12. demonstrate an appreciation of the diversity of life on earth.

Unit outlines

Unit outlines will be available 1 week before the first day of teaching for the relevant session.