Zoology is a modern science set not only in the mountains, grasslands, oceans, fiords and wetlands of the world, but also in the controlled environment of the laboratory. The Department of Zoology has an international reputation for research in freshwater ecology, wildlife and conservation biology, neurobiology and animal behaviour, parasitology, genetics, environmental physiology and evolutionary studies.
What will I learn?
In your first year you will learn about the biology of cells, the biology of animals and the basics of statistics. You will cover topics such as molecular biology, cell ultrastructure and function, genetics, bacteria and viruses and theories of evolution. The courses have a strong New Zealand flavour with an emphasis on the unique nature of the animals of New Zealand and their conservation problems. In your second and third years, you will continue your study of animal diversity, physiology and evolution, with the option of including papers from subjects such as Ecology, Genetics, Statistics and Computer Modelling, and Marine Science.
How will I study?
In your first year your CELS 191 and BIOL 112 lectures and laboratory classes will be supplemented with student study groups, computer-based self-assessment tests, CAL (computer-aided learning) laboratories, and many in-house designed computer exercises. Your lectures will be accompanied by a set of notes (often interactive) and other course materials that are accessible via the internet. Laboratory classes and field trips will complement your lectures in Zoology in your second and third years. Internal assessment forms 40–50 per cent of the final grade for papers in Zoology, and the rest is derived from final examinations.
Can I combine my Zoology study with other subjects?
Many Zoology students also major in another subject such as botany, ecology and genetics. Other students complete a double degree in areas like Law, Commerce and Arts.
What about further study?
A Zoology major can lead on to a further degree, including an MSc, PhD or Postgraduate Diplomas in Natural History Filmmaking and Communication, Environmental Science or Wildlife Management.
There is no first-year course in Zoology. Students who intend to major in Zoology should enrol in Biology (CELS 191, BIOL 112) and Statistics (STAT 110) in their first year. There are no special requirements, but it is recommended that you take NCEA Level 3 biology or its equivalent.