Course Title: Collect and classify plants

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2020

Course Code: BIOL5237C

Course Title: Collect and classify plants

School: 174T School of VE Engineering, Health & Science

Campus: City Campus

Program: C5367 - Diploma of Conservation and Land Management

Course Contact: Namrita Kaul

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 4309

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Seb Buckingham

Nominal Hours: 120

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites


Course Description

This unit of competency describes the skills and knowledge required to collect and identify plants using taxonomic keys.
It applies to individuals who analyse information and exercise judgement to complete a range of advanced skilled activities and demonstrate deep knowledge in a specific technical area.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

AHCPCM502 Collect and classify plants


1. Prepare for plant collecting

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Confirm the purpose and objectives for collecting a range of plants 1.2 Define the area, location and habitat for collecting 1.3 Determine and prepare resources to assist in locating and identifying plants 1.4 Determine and prepare equipment required for collecting and preserving specimens 1.5 Obtain licences or permission to collect specimens from landowner or managing agency 1.6 Assess the range of likely operating conditions, hazards and difficult or sensitive environments for impact on collecting and preserving specimens 1.7 Identify work health and safety hazards associated with plant collecting, assess risks and implement controls


2. Collect plant specimens

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Observe collecting ethics when selecting specimens for picking 2.2 Enter into a field note book relevant information about the specimen, its characteristics and occurrence and note location coordinates 2.3 Confirm the specimen collected provides adequate material for identification and preserving 2.4 Tag and store specimens for later identification 2.5 Follow appropriate work health and safety requirements and work practices


3. Preserve specimens

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Preserve specimen while still fresh 3.2 Clean and prepare specimen for preserving 3.3 Preserve specimen using either pressing or drying techniques 3.4 Mount dried specimen and label with information from notebook


4. Identify plant specimen

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Use the relevant plant key to identify plant 4.2 Identify and document the basic characteristics of a plant 4.3 Confirm plant identity against botanical description of species 4.4 Document plant identity on label

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

Learning activities include:
worksheets botanical drawings microscope work plant identification activities field trips

Teaching Schedule

Week No.

Week Starting


Learning activity



Cells – Intracellular Structure

Microscope, Drawing, Classification

1.In Class Assessment


Plant Structure (Flowering Plants, monocotyledon/dicotyledon

Video, Microscope, Drawing, Classification

1.In Class Assessment


Cell – Intracellular Structure

Making a model of animal cell and converting to plant cell

Analysing key characteristics/differences



Ecological Relationships (Eltham Copper Butterfly)


1.In Class Assessment

Andrew Yandell Reserve Banyule Council



Mosses, Ferns and Conifers

Identification, morphology, drawing

1.In Class Assessment


Wattles Family Fabaceae

Identification, morphology, drawing, using dichotomous plant keys

1.In Class Assessment



Identification, morphology, drawing

1.In Class Assessment


  1. Actinomorphic Zygomorphic Flowers and Leaf Morphology
  2. Preparing a Herbarium

Identification, morphology, drawing


Populate Job Safety Analysis worksheet for personnel collecting and classifying plants (work, health and safety)

Obtaining licenses or permissions; preparing a plant specimen using relevant equipment; conditions, hazards and sensitive environments; ethical considerations; collecting and preserving specimens

1. In Class Assessment


Mid Semester Break, no classes



Identification, morphology, drawing, using dichotomous plant keys

1.In Class Assessment


Maranoa Gardens (Balwyn)

Plant identification

1.In Class Assessment



Wonthaggi Fauna Camp

Vegetation and plant species survey for Wonthaggi Field Trip Report

2. Wonthaggi Field Trip Report (Fieldwork)


Wonthaggi Plant ID

Identification of specimens (leaves and flowers) selected by Assessor from Wonthaggi Field Trip




Identification, morphology, drawing

1.In Class Assessment



  1. Asteraceae, Lamiaceae
  2. Pea family Fabaceae (sub family

Identification, morphology, drawing, using dichotomous plant keys (Lamiaceae)

1. Submit In class Assessment Due

2. Wonthaggi Field Trip Report Due


Practice Dichotomous Key Test

4. Plant identification Test (Practice)



4. Plant identification Test

 (Dichotomous Key)

3.Herbarium Due

4. Plant identification Test Due


Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources

The required text book that must be purchased at the beginning of Semester is:

Costermans, L. F. 2009, Native trees and shrubs of south-eastern Australia, Reed New Holland Sydney

Overview of Assessment

Assessment in this course may include research assignments, written reports, quizzes, field trip work and plant collection & preservation (herbarium)

Assessment Tasks

Assessment 1.  In Class Practical (Week 16)

Assessment 2. Wonthaggi Field Trip Report (Week 14)

Assessment 3. Herbarium (Week 16)

Assessment 4. Plant identification Test (Week 16)

Assessment Matrix

Other Information

Assessment Information This course is graded in accordance with competency-based assessment
CA Competency Acheived NYC Not Yet Competent DNS Did Not Submit for assessment
To pass this course you need to achieve a satisfactory result for all assessments. Students may be given additional opportunities to demonstrate competence.
Late work that is submitted without an application for an extension (see below) will not be corrected.
APPLICATION FOR EXTENSION OF TIME FOR SUBMISSION OF ASSESSABLE WORK - A student may apply for an extension of up to 7 days from the original due date. They must lodge the application form (available online at least 24 hours before the due date. The application should be emailed to the Program Coordinator ( Students requiring longer extensions must apply for SPECIAL CONSIDERATION. For missed assessments such as tests and field trips- you (& your doctor if you are sick) must fill out a special consideration form. This form must be lodged online with supporting evidence prior to, or within, 5 days of the scheduled time of the assessment
Plagiarism is the presentation of the work, idea or creation of another person as though it is your own. It is a form of cheating and is a very serious academic offence that may lead to expulsion from the University. Plagiarised material can be drawn from, and presented in, written, graphic and visual form, including electronic data and oral presentation. Plagiarism occurs when the origin of the material used is not appropriately cited. It also occurs through enabling plagiarism, which is the act of assisting or allowing another person to plagiarise or to copy your own work. Please make sure you consider this carefully in completing all your work and assessments in this course and if you are unsure about whether you might have plagiarised, seek help from your teacher. 

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