These teaching sequences are linked to the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) Biology Study Design (2017-2021).

Sequence 1: Fighting Mosquito Borne Disease

Teaching sequence for: VCE Biology Unit 4, Area of Study 2, Outcome 2

2 modules, 1-3 hours each

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Sequence 2: Epidemics and Pandemics

Teaching sequence for: VCE Biology Unit 4, Area of Study 2, Outcome 2

1 module, 30-50 minutes

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This resource has been developed to support the teaching of content from the VCAA VCE Biology Study Design 2016 (accreditation period 2017-2021). It specifically addresses selected key knowledge from Unit 4: How does life change and respond to challenges over time? Area of study 2: How do humans impact on biological processes. It also addresses key knowledge within Unit 4 Area of Study 1: How are species related?

Some of the resources may be used in the teaching of Unit 1, Area of Study 2, Key knowledge: Survival through adaptations and regulation.

The sequence unfolds stepwise, beginning with fundamental ideas from which more complex ideas are developed. It uses contemporary research relevant to Australian students to explore selected key knowledge in Unit 4, Outcomes 1 and 2. While the sequence explores ideas relevant to the teaching and learning of key knowledge from VCE Biology it does not address the ideas in the same order as the Study Design.

In this teaching sequence, students will:

  • study the impact of human culture and technological applications on biological processes;
  • analyze interrelationships between scientific knowledge and its applications in society and;
  • describe tools and techniques which can be used to manipulate DNA.

The contexts for the sequence are:

  • mosquito-borne diseases (MBD),
  • currently used control strategies and;
  • new control strategies being developed by scientists from within Australia and around the world.

Topics addressed are:

  • What are MBDs?
  • Types of MBDs.
  • Transmission of MBDs
  • The mosquito life cycle
  • Novel MBD control strategies being developed and implemented around the world.
  • The difference between epidemics and pandemics.


Nancy Endersby Harshman tells us her story and about her work in treating mosquito borne diseases.

Getting to know Nancy Endersby, her story, role, highlights and challenges
Understanding the nature of mosquito borne diseases and their treatment
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Thanks to the following for contributing to the development of these sequences:

Special thanks to Ian Bentley and Mary Vamvakas