Bugs 101: Insect-Human Interactions


Of all the animals on earth, which are the strongest for their size? What about the fastest? Who were the first animals to evolve flight? Insects take all of these titles and more! As the most abundant animals on the planet, insects and other arthropods affect our lives in so many ways. From beneficial interactions like pollination and biological pest control, to the transmission of life threatening diseases; this course will teach you about the big ways that these little arthropods impact our lives.

In Bugs 101: Insect-Human Interactions, you will be plunged into the diverse (and sometimes alien) world of arthropods to learn how they work, what they do, and how insects and humans interact every day.
After completing this course, you will be able to:
Describe the evolutionary relationships between insects and their arthropod relatives
Inventory major groups of insects and their diversity
Demonstrate evolutionary adaptations that make insects successful
Discuss insect biology and human-insect interactions
Evaluate positive and negative interactions between insects and humans
Propose practical and symbolic roles insects play in human societies

What you will learn

Module 01: Introduction to Insects and their Terrestrial Relatives

Arthropods, which includes insects, are the most speciose group of animals on the planet. In this module, we explore some of the traits that have allowed insects to dominate terrestrial landscapes around the world, and introduce you to the major insect orders you’ll deal with in the course.

Module 02: The Business of Being an Insect Part 1

What makes an insect an insect? How do these strange creatures operate? This module begins to uncover the inner workings of insects, starting with the digestive and circulatory systems.

Module 03: The Business of Being an Insect Part 2

Building on the previous module, we continue to explore insect biology through an overview of the major physiological systems of insects. We look at the nervous and reproductive systems, and highlight some of the ways insects court, seduce, and reproduce.

Module 04: Insect Locomotion

Did you know that insects are the strongest animals in the world for their size? Find out what makes insects so strong in this module, in which we introduce insect musculature and how they use it to get around. From swimming to flying, we explore the many ways insects move and the specialized appendages they’ve evolved to do so.

What’s included