ANIM2220 Animal Diversity

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 2 core unit in the Zoology major sequence
  • The area of knowledge for this unit is Life and Health Sciences
  • Category B broadening unit for students
This unit will focus on the spectrum of animal diversity, from single celled organisms through to vertebrates. This diversity will be categorised systematically into the 35 phyla, and classes of the major phyla, the organisation of which reflects their evolutionary history. The evolution of animals will be illustrated using the classic study of the change in body structure (‘bauplans'), from simple to complex tissues, organs, segmentation, limbs and other body parts. This will be compared with evolution discerned by modern molecular sequence methods, and how the differences between these methods can be understood. Factors influencing the evolution of animal diversity will be explored, within and between phyla, in the context of coincidental changes in climate, geology, and ecology throughout evolutionary history. Theoretical concepts developed during lectures will be explored in laboratory classes. Representative species from major phyla and classes will be examined to understand body structure, and to demonstrate the characters used to categorise animals into phyla and classes.
Students are able to (1) identify all animal phyla using anatomical characters; (2) identify classes, and sometimes orders, within major phyla using anatomical characters; (3) describe the body structure (‘bauplans') of various animal phyla; (4) explain evolutionary relationships of the animal phyla, including changes in bauplans; (5) relate anatomy and bauplans to physiology and ecology; (6) relate co-evolutionary changes in anatomy and bauplan between phyla; and (7) demonstrate basic laboratory techniques associated with examining and handling zoological specimens.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) final exam, with MCQ, short answer and short essay questions; (2) online tests of diagnostic characteristics; and (3) laboratory work, including handling and dissection of specimens, identifying anatomy and diagnostic characteristics. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit except in the case of a bachelor's pass degree student who has obtained a mark of 45 to 49 overall and is currently enrolled in this unit, and it is the only remaining unit that the student must pass in order to complete their course.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Professor Raphael Didham and Associate Professor Theodore Evans
Unit rules
BIOL1131 Plant and Animal Biology
ANIM2203 Invertebrate Zoology
Contact hours
lectures: 2 per week
labs/practical classes: 3 hours per week

Hickman, R., Keen, E., Larson A. and L’Anson H. Integrated Principles of Zoology: McGrawHill (any edition from 15th onwards) 

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  • Books and other material wherever listed may be subject to change. Book lists relating to 'Preliminary reading', 'Recommended reading' and 'Textbooks' are, in most cases, available via the Booktopia Textbook Finder, which has the functionality to search by course code, course, ISBN and title, and may also be posted or available at the appropriate school's administrative offices. Where texts are listed in the unit description above, an asterisk (*) indicates that the book is available in paperback.