Insect Taxonomy and Systematics (ENTO4004)


Knowledge of the evolutionary relationships between insect groups contributes to our understanding of insect biology and correct taxonomic identification of insects is essential for all areas of entomological research, including pest management. This unit builds on the knowledge gained in second year entomology (BScAgr and BHortSc) and is a core unit for the entomology specialisation (BScAgr). Key concepts that underpin the study of insect systematics, biogeography and phylogeny are described using examples from the evolutionary development of insects. The role of morphological, genetic and molecular studies in the classification of insects is examined. Students will demonstrate their knowledge of insect taxonomy through individual projects. Students will have the opportunity to become `experts┬┐ on a self-selected insect order.Students will practice their communication skills and develop personal and intellectual autonomy through in-class discussions and presentations Students will see insect taxonomy in actino through field trips to museums, laboratories and hospitals.

Our courses that offer this unit of study

Further unit of study information


(1 x 2hr lecture, 1 x 3hr practical or field trip)/week, commencing week 1.


Insect collection (60%), Research Plan (20%), class participation (5%), presentation (15%).


Recommended: Llewellyn, R. (Ed.) 2002. The Good Bug Book. 2nd edition, Australasian Biological Control, Richmond, NSW. 110 pp.
Bailey, PT (Ed.) 2007. Pests of field crops and pastures. CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood, Vic. 520 pp.
Pedigo, LP and Rice, ME. 2009. Entomology and Pest Management, 6th edn. Pearson Prentice Hall, 784 pp.

Faculty/department permission required?


Unit of study rules


ENTO2001 or BIOL2021 or BIOL2921

Study this unit outside a degree

Non-award/non-degree study

If you wish to undertake one or more units of study (subjects) for your own interest but not towards a degree, you may enrol in single units as a non-award student.

Cross-institutional study

If you are from another Australian tertiary institution you may be permitted to underake cross-institutional study in one or more units of study at the University of Sydney.