VCE Biology Unit 2 - Africa

Year levels



See Plan Your Visit


Monday to Friday (during school term)

Investigate the adaptations of an African animal, and the relationships between species that help them to survive in an ecosystem.

Program description

VCE Biology Unit 2

In this program VCE Biology students will learn about how inherited adaptations help an African species to survive. They will explore the adaptations that enable animals to obtain and digest food.

Students will investigate the relationships between species in an African ecosystem, determine the impact of keystone species and represent the interdependencies in a food web. This includes conducting scientific analysis of the zoo's collection of skulls and scats.

Students will learn:

  • The structural, physiological and behavioural adaptations that allow mammals to survive in Africa
  • About relationships and interdependencies between African species, as represented by food webs
  • How scientific knowledge and skills are used in zoos and wildlife conservation
  • The biological importance of genetic diversity within a species or population

Program sequence

Before your visit


Use the activities in the Teaching Guide (below) to spark students’ curiosity before their zoo visit and prepare them for their excursion.

During your visit

Connect and Understand

Students will investigate and compare the diet and dentition of a range of African species, with a focus on ungulates. Students will observe a species’ habitat, gaining insight into living systems and keystone species. They will explore the interdependencies of an African food chain, including impacts when species are introduced or removed.

Your zoo visit will include:  Introduction (for arrivals between 9:45am – 10:00am), Zoo Teacher workshop (70 minutes), Safari Bus Tour (40 minutes) and keeper talks. Check out your Teaching Guide for other ideas of what to do at the zoo. 

After your visit


Use activities in the Teaching Guide to deepen students’ learning back at school. 


Use the Teaching Guide to enable students to master their knowledge and skills in real-world contexts. 

Program maps and itineraries

Your booking confirmation email will list your group's education workshop/s and safari bus tour time. Each workshop time has its own map and daily itinerary. Paper maps will be provided to you on the day.

Program resources

VCE teaching guides are password protected. You will receive the password via email before your excursion. You can also request the password upon booking.

Learning outcomes

Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) – Biology

Unit 2: How does inheritance impact on diversity?

Area of Study 2: How do inherited adaptations impact on diversity?

  • Students will explore the structural, physiological and behavioural adaptations of an African animal
  • Students will explore interdependencies between species, including impact of changes to keystone species, predators and their ecological roles in structuring and maintaining the distribution, density and size of a population in an African ecosystem
  • Students will explore the biological importance of genetic diversity within a species or population

Plan your excursion 

This program is an outdoor all-weather program; the students will need appropriate clothing for weather conditions. This could include a raincoat, hat and sun protection.

Bring what students need to record their research e.g. notes, drawings, photographs, videos, voice memos, diagrams.    

School groups will enter Werribee Open Range Zoo via the Main Entrance. Organising teachers please check in with our Admissions team upon arrival. More information.

Book your education experience

Fill out an online form to request a booking for your zoo education experience

Request booking now

You will need to know the following to book your zoo excursion or online workshop:

  • Education program of your choice (if applicable)
  • Preferred date
  • School name and address
  • Contact details of organising teacher
  • Number of students/classes and their year level