Spiders were hard at work long before the dinosaurs appeared and have settled everywhere on the planet except Antarctica. Most live on land, but some spend their lives on or near water. They make their homes everywhere, from treetops to underground burrows, from suburban subdivisions to tropical caves, even 22,000 feet up on Mt. Everest. Spiders are important predators that keep many ecosystems in balance. In this life science course, students explore the concepts of morphology and classification. Learners are introduced to the anatomy of spiders, as well as the composition and use of their silk, webs, fangs, and venom. Lab, field, and collecting techniques are examined. Museum research on Australian ground spiders is also highlighted to gain insight into each of these topics. Scientist-authored essays, online interaction, web resources and video help us to look into the lives of spiders as well as the way they are studied through lab techniques, journaling, collection, drawing, classification and identification. Learners will model these techniques by making their own spider collection.
*All course information is from the 2013-2014 Catalog.