Science / Year 10 / Science Understanding / Biological sciences

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Curriculum content descriptions

Transmission of heritable characteristics from one generation to the next involves DNA and genes (ACSSU184)

  • describing the role of DNA as the blueprint for controlling the characteristics of organisms
  • using models and diagrams to represent the relationship between DNA, genes and chromosomes
  • recognising that genetic information passed on to offspring is from both parents by meiosis and fertilisation
  • representing patterns of inheritance of a simple dominant/recessive characteristic through generations of a family
  • predicting simple ratios of offspring genotypes and phenotypes in crosses involving dominant/recessive gene pairs or in genes that are sex-linked
  • describing mutations as changes in DNA or chromosomes and outlining the factors that contribute to causing mutations
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Interactive resource

Genes: what is DNA?

Build models of the DNA molecules that make up chromosomes. Discover how the components match up to make a double helix. For example, discover that the bases adenine and thymine pair up to form ‘rungs’ of the helix. This learning object is the second in a series of five objects that progressively increase in difficulty. ...

Interactive resource

Genes: introduction to genes

Zoom in on a living plant to see views down to the atomic level. Discover how each component consists of smaller parts. Identify the parts that carry the instructions for the plant’s characteristics. For example, observe that the chromosomes are made of DNA. This learning object is the first in a series of five objects ...

Interactive resource

Genes: DNA replication

Model the copying of DNA molecules when cells divide. Discover the part played by enzymes in the replication process. Select the correct base pairings to complete the DNA double helix. For example, pair adenine with thymine. This learning object is the third in a series of five objects that progressively increase in difficulty. ...

Tablet friendly (Interactive resource)


See how genes and genetic engineering work. Build models of DNA, and work out how it is copied as cells divide. Discover how the codes carried in the genes are copied and used to build proteins. See how gene splicing can be used to benefit human lives. For example, model the transfer of a human gene into bacteria, so they ...

Interactive resource

EagleCat: cell division

Watch a step-by-step animation of cell division. Observe the differences between the two types of cell division, meiosis and mitosis. Look at images of the different stages of meiosis or mitosis and identify each stage by name. Use movie controls to jump to a specified stage of cell division. Print out images of the stages ...

Interactive Resource

Evolution and heredity: student digital

This is a student digital resource that contains interactive materials for a comprehensive study of evolution and heredity including species variation, adaptation, selection and biodiversity, evidence for evolution, the structure of DNA, meiosis and sexual reproduction, inheriting genes and traits, and mutations. This resource ...

Assessment resource

Cell division and DNA: assessment

Test your understanding of nuclear and cell division referring to mitosis and meiosis. Answer multiple-choice questions and when asked give your reasoning for your answer. Select the correct base pairings to model the DNA replication process. View and print a report on your work. This assessment object is one in a series ...

Interactive resource

Genes: protein synthesis

Model the process that living cells use to build protein molecules. First, build an RNA strand to copy the gene code of the DNA. Then follow the RNA out of the nucleus to the ribosomes and use a triplet code to pick the correct sequence of amino acids to build the protein. For example, match the code UCU with the amino ...

Interactive Resource

Natural selection

This is an interactive resource in which students explore natural selection by controlling an environment and causing mutations in rabbits. Students can select vary environments, selection pressures, mutations and associated genetics, and then observe the populations change. This interactive resource is supported by tips ...

Assessment resource

Introduction to genes: assessment

Test your understanding of cellular components responsible for transmission of genetic information. Order the cellular components responsible for transmission of genetic information relative to each other and the organism as a whole. Answer multiple-choice questions. View and print a report on your work.

Interactive resource

Genes: gene splicing

Model the process of gene splicing to produce the insulin needed by people with diabetes. Cut the insulin gene from a DNA strand, then insert it into the DNA of a plasmid, which will produce insulin when transferred to a bacterium. Use you knowledge of DNA structure to direct the splicing process. For example, select the ...

Teacher resource

Evolution and heredity: teacher guide

This is a teacher guide containing material to support the planning and implementing of lessons for a unit on evolution and heredity. It covers topics such as natural selection and species variation; evidence for evolution; DNA, genes, mitosis and meiosis; patterns of inheritance and gene technologies. The guide contains ...

Moving Image

Genetics, inheritance and epilepsy

Explore genetics, the patterns of inheritance and disease-causing mutations. Find out about Gregor Mendel's historic pea-plant breeding experiments showing that traits are inherited in particular patterns. See how Australian scientists discovered the gene mutation responsible for a type of epilepsy.


Evolution and heredity: student guide

This is a student guide that takes an in-depth look at evolution and heredity. It begins and ends with students arguing their stances on contentious topics concerning evolution and genetics. The chapters on evolution provide the evidence for evolution and show how species chance. The section of heredity introduces the history ...

Interactive Resource

What is meiosis?

This is an interactive resource in which students explore meiosis and fertilization in dragons in a virtual lab. In the 'world' of Geniverse, students explore heredity and genetics by breeding and studying virtual dragons. They can control the process of meiosis and fertilization and engage in challenges by examining the ...

Interactive Resource


This is an interactive resource about how meiosis and fertilization shuffle the alleles that offspring inherit. Students explore meiosis with a computer model of breeding dragons. They run a simulation of the process of meiosis, inspect the chromosomes, then choose gametes to fertilize. They can then predict the results ...

Teacher resource

Genetically engineered crops

Explore how DNA and genes transmit heritable characteristics from one generation to the next. Discover how artificial selection and genetic engineering can be used to introduce desirable traits into plant foods. Use video clips to explore the arguments for and against genetically engineered crops.Examine different perspectives ...

Teacher resource

Classifying systems in cells

The nature of how living things work is intrinsically connected and interrelated. This unit covers a broad range of topics, from molecular aquaporins (the tiny channels through which water and other molecules pass through cell membranes) to the global challenge of securing the world's food supply. It contains a sequence ...

Moving Image

GM bananas

Meet a scientist who is genetically modifying bananas to make them more nutritious. Learn about some of the benefits and concerns about using gene technologies to modify foods.

Moving Image

Producing cattle and sheep...and beef and lamb: producer video

This is a video about the operation of a Southdown sheep stud and olive plantation at Gum Park farm in South Australia. Introduced by farmer Dee Nolan, it shows the sheep in the olive groves, the lambing paddocks and birthing shed as she describes the farm's certified organic approach that starts from the soil up and uses ...