Bachelor of Science, majoring in Zoology and Ecology

Courses and Study Australian courses Bachelor of Science, majoring in Zoology and Ecology

Zoology and Ecology students have more access to field learning experiences than any other university in Australia.

Through access to our field stations in tropical rainforests, savannah woodlands, the Great Barrier Reef and partner groups internationally, you will develop the skills of a Zoologist and Ecologist through direct hands-on experience.

Enjoy access to the only canopy crane in Australia, and join us on field trips to such unique biodiversity regions as Borneo and the Galapagos Islands.

JCU also provides students with access to a research community of global standing, receiving the highest levels of recognition in areas such as ecology and being ranked Number Two in the world, and Number One in Australia for citations in the area of climate change research.

JCU's leading position is enhanced by the establishment of its new Centre for Tropical Biodiversity and Climate Change and Centre for Tropical Sustainability Science.

High achieving students have the option to enrol in JCU's prestigious Bachelor of Advanced Science

Campus
Townsville, Cairns
Start dates
February, July
Duration
3 years full-time
Part time available
Study mode
On campus
Assumed knowledge
English, Maths B. Recommended: at least one of Biology, Chemistry, Earth Science, Geography, Maths C or Physics
OP/Rank
16/65

Career opportunities

Studying Zoology and Ecology opens doors to a wide choice of careers. As your personal interests develop, JCU will offer you specialist work experience and study paths to help you pursue your dreams.  You may choose a career as a wildlife educator or environmental consultant, or perhaps you will join a conservation, quarantine or biosecurity organisation.  You may even work in the media industry advising companies such as the ABC or BBC, become an ecological restoration worker, develop private consultancy firms or continue onto further study.

Recent career pathways include:

  • Environmental and Policy Officers with:
  • Rehabilitation Scientist, Queensland Government Department of Natural Resources and Mines
  • Working within national, state and local government research bodies like the:
  • Department of Agriculture and Water Resources
  • Department of Agriculture and Fisheries
  • Data Analyst Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation and Science
  • Wildlife Consultants with the British Broadcasting Commission and the ABC
  • Research Assistant and Technical Officers James Cook University
  • Animal Carers at Zoological Parks
  • Secondary and tertiary education

You may even begin your career with JCU partner organisations such as:

Course highlights

JCU researchers and students work in over 40 tropical nations worldwide, providing exposure to a wide range of environments, societal and economic challenges, and cultures.  You can be a part of research that addresses real world problems locally and globally, including the most complex tropical issues. You'll be involved in studies covering many of the most pressing threats in the Tropics including deforestation, infrastructure expansion, habitat fragmentation, over-hunting, invasive species and other environmental perils. Your studies will span biosecurity and invasive species, to behavioural ecology, conservation biology and ecological modelling, and you'll study a wide range of species including all higher order kingdoms – animals, plants and fungi. Other highlights of studying at JCU include:

  • A learning experience based on experience. The greatest access to field-based learning of any university in Australia.
  • Easy access to the World Heritage Great Barrier Reef Marine Park
  • Close proximity to the world class research and teaching facility at the Daintree Rainforest Observatory and the only canopy crane in Australia.
  • Co-location with the Australian Tropical Herbarium, providing expertise in plant identification, molecular biology and evolution
  • Access to two areas of global biodiversity significance: the Galapagos Islands and Borneo.
  • Access to stakeholders including the Wet Tropics Management Authority and the Skyrail Foundation
  • Collaboration within our current research projects with government departments including the EHP, QPWS and Biosecurity Queensland providing networking opportunities for students
  • The benefits of JCU's collaboration with Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) including the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Australia – providing volunteering and networking opportunities for our students.

Yellow Crazy Ant project

Recently our 15th undergraduate student was trained on the Yellow Crazy Ant project. Students collected data that provides direct input to the Wet Tropics Management Authority's program to eradicate the ants. The project was in collaboration with the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary, which provided all the butterfly eggs and rearing advice. We collaborated with the Cairns Regional Council. Last year three volunteer undergraduate students and their lecturer published the first paper to document the effect of these Yellow Crazy Ants in the Wet Tropics. The story was picked up by 14 Australian news outlets and two students were interviewed on TV. Video footage is now being used by the Invasive Species Council to promote the Yellow Crazy Ant message. All this experience has significantly helped these JCU students to establish careers in areas of Zoology and Ecology.

Course overview

When you study Zoology and Ecology at JCU you'll participate in field work, starting in your first year of study. This includes access to the reef and rainforest, wetlands, estuarine systems and dry savannahs of our region. JCU has close working relationships with centres of research excellence, so you will have easy access to current research initiatives and leaders. The combination of academic studies, hands-on experience and fieldwork will make it a pleasure to learn about:

  • The diversity of animal life, form and function
  • Animal evolution, ecology and behaviour
  • How animals adapt to changing environments
  • The evolution and maintenance of plant and animal biodiversity
  • Conservation and wildlife biology
  • Australian fauna
  • Entomology.

You will also learn how to:

  • Scientifically identify, offset and solve real environmental threats
  • Manage climate change, environmental pollution and deforestation impacts
  • Protect biodiversity and establish ecosystem processes
  • Improve at-risk ecosystems, plants and wildlife species
  • Grasp how plant and ecological science relates to current conservation issues
  • Identify and manage plant and animal species and communities.

How to apply

Check the QTAC information and apply by clicking on the relevant link below depending on where you wish to study.

Take note of the QTAC code for this course in the location you've chosen because you'll need to enter it as part of your QTAC application.

Townsville (316061) - Apply now
Cairns (326061) - Apply now

OP Score/Rank is representative of 2017 entry requirements and is therefore indicative only. Entry scores for 2018 will be finalised in the major offer round.

Subjects

BSc – Zoology and Ecology Major

Major code

BSC-ZAE

Credit point value

24 credit points for single major

Major Structure

CORE SUBJECTS

Level 1

BS1007:03 Introduction to Biodiversity or BZ1006:03 Diversity of Life

BS1001:03 Introduction to Biological Processes or BZ1005:03 Introductory Ecology

Level 2

BZ2490:03 Toolkit for the Field Biologist

BS2460:03 Fundamentals of Ecology or BZ2880:03 Ecology: Distribution, Abundance and Diversity

BS2470:03 Evolution or BZ2820:03 Evolutionary Biology

Level 3

BZ3061:03 Behavioural Ecology or BZ3745:03 Tropical Entomology

BZ3220:03 Population and Community Ecology or BZ3225:03 Field Ecology

BZ3230:03 Ecology Research Methods or BZ3001:03 Field Studies in the Equatorial Tropics: Borneo

Pathway into course

The Diploma of Higher Education is a one-year course (or two years, part-time) designed to help people who may not meet the academic requirements for entry into a Bachelor degree course. The course is also designed to help students develop the necessary skills to be successful university students.

The Diploma consists of a combination of introductory and first year degree subjects. Successful completion of the Diploma will give you a recognised qualification in its own right.

Graduating with the Diploma will also allow you to enter many JCU Bachelor degree programs and may give you credit, for some of the subjects you successfully complete.

Contact pathways@jcu.edu.au, if you have any questions or call Anne Chatelain (07) 47815740 in Townsville or Gabi Newman (07) 4232 1155 in Cairns.

Students are encouraged to undertake the Tertiary Access Course if they have not studied recently and/or want assistance making the transition to University studies.

Get prepared - bridging subjects

Bridging subjects are designed to fill any gaps in your knowledge. We offer maths and chemistry bridging subjects that can be studied on-campus in Cairns and Townsville. You may need to enrol in a bridging subject if you have not achieved the grade of ‘Sound Achievement or better’ in Queensland Year 12 maths or chemistry.

Handbook

Bachelor of Science

Course code

115810

Course type

BAC – Bachelor Pass (AQF level 7)

Professional accreditation status

The Physics major for the Bachelor of Science is seeking accreditation by the Australian Institute of Physics (AIP). Once accredited, graduates will be automatically eligible for membership of the Australian Institute of Physics.

The Chemistry major for this course is accredited by the Royal Australian Chemical Institute (RACI).  Graduates will be eligible for non-corporate membership of RACI and, with an additional three years’ experience in chemistry, may be eligible to register as a Chartered Chemist with Corporate Membership of RACI.

Division

Division of Tropical Environments and Societies

Award Requirements

Admission Requirements

Course pre-requisites

Assumed Knowledge: English (4,SA); Maths B (4,SA)

Recommended Study: At least one of Biology, Chemistry, Earth Science, Geography, Maths C or Physics

Minimum English language proficiency requirements

Applicants of non-English speaking backgrounds must meet the English language proficiency requirements of Band 1 Schedule II of the JCU Admissions Policy.

Additional Course requirements

Applicants who have not completed high school intermediate level Mathematics B (or equivalent) must select MA1020: Preparatory Mathematics as part of their study plan to successfully complete the Bachelor of Science.

CH1020: Preparatory Chemistry may also need to be selected, depending on the major. Students must familiarise themselves with the subjects needed to complete their chosen major.

Students should undertake the above subject/s in block mode where available and be aware that restrictions may apply to electives if they wish to complete in the normal three (3) year timeframe. These preparatory subjects typically start earlier than the standard course commencement date. Contact JCU on 1800 246 446 for more information.

Post admission
requirements

Some majors require attendance at block mode or limited attendance subjects on either the Townsville or Cairns campus. If students must attend block-mode classes at a campus other than the one they are enrolled at, they are responsible for their own expenses.

Academic Requirements for Course Completion

Credit points

72 credit points as per course structure

Additional course rules

A maximum of 30 credit points may be taken at level 1.

A minimum of 18 credit points of science subjects must be taken at level 3 or higher.

Students may seek permission to enrol in one or more level 5 subjects.

Course learning outcomes

The graduates of James Cook University are prepared and equipped to create a brighter future for life in the tropics world-wide.

JCU graduates are committed to lifelong learning, intellectual development and to the display of exemplary personal, professional and ethical standards. They have a sense of their place in the tropics and are charged with professional, community, and environmental responsibility. JCU graduates appreciate the need to embrace and be acquainted with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples of Australia. They are committed to reconciliation, diversity and sustainability. They exhibit a willingness to lead and to contribute to the intellectual, environmental, cultural, economic and social challenges of regional, national, and international communities of the tropics.

Graduates of the Bachelor of Science at James Cook University will be able to:

  • Integrate and apply a coherent body of theoretical and technical knowledge, including underlying concepts and principles, in one or more science disciplines
  • Critically appraise the role and relevance of science in society, particularly in creating sustainable futures in the tropics, worldwide
  • Demonstrate broad understanding of the methods of science, including the creative processes involved in developing scientific knowledge, and its contestable and testable nature
  • Retrieve, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information from a range of sources
  • Plan and conduct reliable, evidence-based laboratory and/or field experiments by selecting and applying methods, techniques and tools, as appropriate to one or more science disciplines
  • Organise, analyse and interpret scientific data using mathematical, statistical and technological skills
  • Convey scientific ideas, arguments and conclusions clearly and coherently through well-developed written and oral communication skills and a variety of media
  • Identify, analyse and generate solutions to unpredictable or complex problems by applying scientific knowledge and skills with initiative and well-developed judgement
  • Critically review regulatory requirements, ethical principles and, where appropriate, cultural frameworks, to work effectively, responsibly and safely in diverse contexts
  • Reflect on current skills, knowledge and attitudes to manage their professional learning needs and performance, autonomously and in collaboration with others

Course Structure

CORE SUBJECTS

Level 1

SC1101:03 Science: Nature, Knowledge and Understanding

SC1102:03 Modelling Natural Systems or SC1109:03 Modelling Natural Systems-Advanced

Plus select 6 credit points of specified Level 1 subjects from List 1 (Breadth Subjects)

Level 2

SC2202:03 Quantitative Methods in Science or SC2209:03 Quantitative Methods in Science-Advanced

Plus select 3 credit points of specified Level 2 subjects from List 2 (Skill Subjects)

Level 3

SC3008:03 Professional Placement

SC3010:03 Wicked Problems in Science

List 1 (Breadth Subjects)

BM1000:03 Introductory Biochemistry and Microbiology

BS1007:03 Introduction to Biodiversity or BZ1006:03 Diversity of Life

BS1001:03 Introduction to Biological Processes or BZ1005:03 Introduction to Ecology

CH1001:03 Chemistry: A central Science or CH1011:03 Chemistry for the Natural Sciences

CH1002:03 Chemistry: Principles and Applications

CP1401:03 Fundamentals of Problem Solving and Programming I

EV1005:03 Environmental Processes and Global Change

EA1110:03 Evolution of the Earth

MA1000:03 Mathematical Foundation

MA1003:03 Mathematical Techniques

MA1009:03 Algebra and Calculus 2 (Students selecting MA1009: Algebra and Calculus 2 must also select MA1008: Algebra and Calculus 1 within the subsequent Enabling option)

PH1005:03 Advanced Stream Physics 1

PH1007:03 Advanced Stream Physics 2

List 2 (Skill Subjects)

CH2103:03 Analytical Chemistry

CP2404:03 Database Modelling

EV2502:03 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems

MA2201:03 Numerical Mathematics

PH2222:03 Sensors and Sensing for Scientists

PLUS

Select a Major from Table A

PLUS

Select one of the following Options

Option 1 (Second Major)

Select a second major from Table A

or

Option 2 (Minors)

Select a Science Minor from Table B that is different to your major

PLUS

Select a second Minor from Table B

or

Option 3 (Enabling)

Applicants who have not completed high school intermediate level Mathematics B (or equivalent) must select MA1020 Preparatory Mathematics to successfully complete the Bachelor of Science.

MA1020:03 Preparatory Mathematics or any Level 1, 2 or 3 subject

PLUS

Depending on the Major selected, applicants who have not completed high school Chemistry (or equivalent) must select CH1020 Preparatory Chemistry to successfully complete the Bachelor of Science.

CH1020:03 Preparatory Chemistry or any Level 1, 2 or 3 subjects

PLUS

Applicants who are undertaking MA1009: Algebra and Calculus 2 must select MA1008: Algebra and Calculus 1 to be able to successfully complete the Bachelor of Science:

MA1008:03 Algebra and Calculus 1 or any Level 1, 2 or 3 subjects

PLUS

Select 3 credit points of any Level 1, 2 or 3 subjects

PLUS

Select 9 credit points of any Level 2, 3 or 5 of AQ, BC, BM, BS, BZ, CH, CL, CP, CS, EA, EE, EV, MA, MB, ME, MI, PH or SC subjects

PLUS

Select 3 credit points of any Level 3 or 5 of AQ, BC, BM, BS, BZ, CH, CL, CP, CS, EA, EE, EV, MA, MB, ME, MI, PH or SC subjects

or

Option 4 (Electives)

Select 9 credit points of any level 2, 3 or 5 of AQ, BC, BM, BS, BZ, CH, CL, CP, CS, EA, EE, EV, MA, MB, ME, MI, PH or SC subjects

PLUS

Select 3 credit points of any level 3 or 5 of AQ, BC, BM, BS, BZ, CH, CL, CP, CS, EA, EE, EV, MA, MB, ME, MI, PH or SC subjects

PLUS

Select 12 credit points of any Level 1, 2 or 3 subjects or an Inter-disciplinary Minor

Table A (MAJORS)

Type of major

Mandatory, single or double

Credit points in major

24 credit points

MAJOR

AVAILABLE AT

NOTES

Aquaculture Science and Technology

Townsville

The first year of study may be completed in Cairns

Chemistry

Townsville

Students undertaking this Major will have successfully completed senior Chemistry and Maths B or equivalent, or will need to complete preparatory subject/s within this course structure

Not available for mid-year entry

Earth Science

Cairns

Townsville

 

Marine Biology

Townsville

The first year of study may be completed in Cairns

Mathematics

Townsville

The first year of study may be completed in Cairns

Students undertaking this Major will have successfully completed senior Maths B or equivalent, or will need to complete the preparatory Maths subject within this course structure

Molecular and Cell Biology

Townsville

Students undertaking this Major will have successfully completed senior Chemistry or equivalent, or will need to complete the preparatory Chemistry subject within this course structure

Physics

Townsville

The Mathematics minor is compulsory for students studying the Physics major

Students undertaking this Major will have successfully completed senior Maths B or equivalent, or will need to complete the preparatory Maths subject within this course structure

Not available for mid-year entry

Zoology and Ecology

Cairns

Townsville

 

Table B (MINORS)

Type of minor

Single or Double

Credit points in minor

12 credit points

MINOR

AVAILABLE AT

NOTES

Advanced Chemistry

Townsville

Advanced Mathematics

Townsville

Advanced Physics

Townsville

Aquaculture Science & Technology

Townsville

Due to prerequisites, this minor is only available to those students studying a biological sciences major (Marine Biology or Zoology & Ecology)

Chemistry

Townsville

 

Environmental Geochemistry

Townsville

Exploration

Townsville

 

Field Studies in Earth Sciences

Townsville

 

Fisheries

Townsville

Marine Biology

Townsville

Due to prerequisites, this minor is only available to those students studying a biological sciences major (Aquaculture or Zoology & Ecology).

Marine & Environmental Science and Sensors

Townsville

Mathematics

Townsville

This minor is compulsory for students studying the Physics major

Physical Geography

Cairns

Townsville

Physics

Townsville

Zoology and Ecology

Cairns

Townsville

Due to prerequisites, this minor is only available to  students studying a biological sciences major (Aquaculture or Marine Biology).

Inter-Disciplinary Minors

Cairns

Townsville

Please refer to list for details of all minors available for selection

Campus

COURSE AVAILABLE AT

NOTES

Cairns

Not all majors and minors available in Cairns

Mid-year entry is not available in Cairns for students who require the preparatory maths subject.

Townsville

Mid-year entry may have an early start date. Students who enrol mid-year and need to complete the preparatory Maths subject must take MA1020 in Study Period 7 if they wish to complete the course within 3 years.

Candidature

Expected time to complete

3 years full-time or equivalent part-time

Maximum time to complete

9 years

Maximum leave of absence

3 years

Progression

Course progression
requisites

Must successfully complete 18 credit points of level 1 and 2 science subjects before attempting any level 3 science subject

Course includes mandatory professional placement(s)

Yes

Special assessment
requirements

Nil

Professional accreditation
requirements

Nil

Maximum allowed Pass
Conceded (PC) grade

3 credit points

One PC grade only may be awarded with approval of College or Division examiners meeting, to allow a student to graduate, and that PC grade must not contribute to a core subject or a major.

Supplementary exam for
final subject

Not applicable

Advanced Standing

Eligibility

Students may apply for advanced standing for previous tertiary study in accordance with the Advanced Standing and Articulation policy and associated procedures

Maximum allowed

48 credit points

Except where a student transfers from one JCU award to another, then advanced standing may be granted for more than two-thirds of the new award, where there is subject equivalence between the awards

Currency

Advanced standing will be granted only for studies completed in the 10 years prior to the commencement of this course.

Expiry

Advanced standing gained for any subject shall be cancelled 19 years after the date of the examination upon which the advanced standing is based if, by then, the student has not completed the course of study prescribed for the degree.

Other restrictions

A maximum of 6 credit points of advanced standing may be granted at level 3.

A maximum of 12 credit points of advanced standing may be granted for subjects outside the Science Schedule of Subjects.

Advanced Standing will not be granted for MA1020:03, CH1020:03 or PH1001:03

Award Details

Award title

BACHELOR OF SCIENCE

Approved abbreviation

BSc

Inclusion of majors on
testamur

Major/s studied will appear on the testamur

Exit with lesser award

Students who have completed 24 credit points of their course award requirements, and withdraw from or fail to meet the requirements for progression in the later years, may be eligible for the award of Diploma of Tertiary Studies.

Course articulation

Not applicable

Honours

Honours availability

Available as an additional 24 credit points of study [end-on]

Eligibility

By invitation of the College Dean

Normally a minimum overall GPA of 5.5 (i.e. credit average) is required across the bachelor degree, with credits or better in the discipline specific areas.

Quota restrictions on the number of honours places available may apply from time to time as determined by the College Dean.

Honours

The Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree is available for high-achieving students. It consists of extra study and the development of a personal research project and thesis. An Honours degree is usually essential for entry to research higher degrees. Please refer to the Bachelor of Science (Honours) Handbook for eligibility information.

What is Zoology and Ecology?

This website is intended as general guide. Prospective students should contact the university to confirm admission requirements and the availability of courses. James Cook University reserves the right to alter any course or admission requirement without prior notice.