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Age Suitability: S1 - S6

Availability: Edinburgh Zoo, Highland Wildlife Park

Lesson Duration: 1 hour 50 minutes



A look into the key concepts of biodiversity including genetic, species and ecosystem diversity. This session also looks at threats to biodiversity and some conservation efforts that are happening today.

Lesson Outline:

An introduction to the topic of biodiversity. Pupils take part in a tour of some Park animals and interactive session at the Education Centre discussing different aspects of this fascinating field.
Curriculum for Excellence Experiences and Outcomes:

Broad General Education Science:

  • SCN 2-01a “Relating physical and behavioural characteristics to survival or extinction”.
  • SCN 2-02a “I have contributed to the design or conservation of a wildlife area."
  • SCN 3-01a “Living things from different habitats to compare biodiversity."
  • SCN 3-04a “Heat Transference”
  • SCN 3-05b “Impact of climate change on survival of living things”
  • SCN 4-01a “How living things are adapted for survival”

National 4 Biology:

  • Nat 4 2.4 “Genetic Information”
  • Nat 4 3.1 “Animals & Plants depend on each other”
  • Nat 4 3.5 “Impact of Human Population on Biodiversity”
  • Nat 4 3.5 “Adaptations for Survival”

National 5 Biology:

  • Nat 5 2.5.e “Combining genes from 2 parents contributes to variation within a species”
  • Nat 5 3.1.a “Biotic & Abiotic factors affect biodiversity in an ecosystem.”
  • Nat 5 3.1.b “Examples of abiotic & biotic factors"
  • Nat 5 3.1.c ”Global distribution of Biomes”
  • Nat 5 3.1.e “Ecological Niche”
  • Nat 5 3.4.b “Variation driven Evolution”
  • Nat 5 3.4.c “Natural Selection”
  • Nat 5 3.4.d “Speciation”
  • Nat 5 3.5 “Human impact on the Environment”

Higher Biology:

  • Higher 1.7.c “Natural Selection (and sexual selection)”
  • Higher 1.7.d “Speciation”
  • Higher 1.8.b “Phylogenetics & Molecular Clocks”
  • Higher 1.8.c “Comparison of Genomes from different species – conserved genes”
  • Higher 2.3.c “Physiological adaptations for low oxygen niches”
  • Higher 3.8.d “Climate change and impact on biodiversity”

Higher Human Biology:

  • Human 1.2.d.i “Sequencing DNA, information on evolutionary relationships & origins”
  • Human 3.2.a.ii “Socialisation & learning”
  • Human 3.2.b.ii “Transmission of knowledge & Social Evolution”
  • Human 3.2.c. ”The effect of learning”

Advanced Higher Biology:

  • Adv. Higher 2.1.c “Evidence of divergent & convergent evolution.”
  • Adv. Higher 2.2.a.i “Drift & Selection”
  • Adv. Higher 2.2.a.iii “Coevolution”
  • Adv. Higher 2.2.c.ii “Courtship, Sexual Selection”


  • MNU 4-20a “Evaluate & Interpret raw data.”
  • MNU 4-20b “Compare numerical data in real life contexts”.