Life continues through the processes of reproduction and heredity. Students expand their knowledge of evolution by understanding the cellular processes involved in increasing genetic diversity. They investigate reproduction and inheritance patterns in both plants and animals as well as the role of DNA in polypeptide synthesis and the uses of technologies in the study of inheritance patterns.

Students also learn about contemporary research and the work of geneticists across a variety of industries, including medical applications and agriculture. They explore the effects on society and the environment through the application of genetic research.

Biology Syllabus p.48



How does reproduction ensure the continuity of a species?





explain the mechanisms of reproduction that ensure the continuity of a species, by analysing sexual and asexual methods of reproduction in a variety of organisms, including but not limited to:

– animals: advantages of external and internal fertilisation

– plants: asexual and sexual reproduction

– fungi: budding, spores

– bacteria: binary fission (ACSBL075)

– protists: binary fission, budding


analyse the features of fertilisation, implantation and hormonal control of pregnancy and birth in mammals

The hormonal control of the menstrual cycle

This video explores the specific hormones responsible for the menstrual cycle in humans.


evaluate the impact of scientific knowledge on the manipulation of plant and animal reproduction in agriculture

Selective Breeding / Pollination

  • Super Cows

  • Plant Breeding - William Farrer

Cell Replication

How important is it for genetic material to be replicated exactly?

model the processes involved in cell replication, including but not limited to:

– mitosis and meiosis (ACSBL075)

– DNA replication using the Watson and Crick DNA model, including nucleotide composition, pairing and bonding

This syllabus outcome sees students model the processes Mitosis, Meiosis and DNA Replication. The videos from the Walter and Eliza Institute of Medical Research serve as stimulus to spark the students curiosity and increase their understanding of these processes before simplfying these processes into a model.


Assess the effect of the cell replication processes on the continuity of species

DNA and Polypeptide Synthesis

Why is polypeptide synthesis important?

construct appropriate representations to model and compare the forms in which DNA exists in eukaryotes and prokaryotes (ACSBL076)


model the process of polypeptide synthesis, including: (ACSBL079)

– transcription and translation – assessing the importance of mRNA and tRNA in transcription and translation (ACSBL079)

– analysing the function and importance of polypeptide synthesis (ACSBL080)

– assessing how genes and environment affect phenotypic expression (ACSBL081)


Genetic Variation

How can the genetic similarities and differences within and between species be compared?

conduct practical investigations to predict variations in the genotype of offspring by modelling meiosis, including the crossing over of homologous chromosomes, fertilisation and mutations (ACSBL084)


model the formation of new combinations of genotypes produced during meiosis, including but not limited to:

– interpreting examples of autosomal, sex-linkage, co-dominance, incomplete dominance and multiple alleles (ACSBL085) – constructing and interpreting information and data from pedigrees and Punnett squares


collect, record and present data to represent frequencies of characteristics in a population, in order to identify trends, patterns, relationships and limitations in data, for example:

– examining frequency data

– analysing single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)

Inheritance Patterns in a Population



investigate the use of technologies to determine inheritance patterns in a population using, for example: (ACSBL064, ACSBL085)

 DNA sequencing and profiling (ACSBL086)


investigate the use of data analysis from a large-scale collaborative project to identify trends, patterns and relationships, for example: (ACSBL064, ACSBL073)

 the use of population genetics data in conservation management

 population genetics studies used to determine the inheritance of a disease or disorder

 population genetics relating to human evolution