Diversity in Living Organisms

Classification and its Types

With the millions of different species and organisms on earth, in various ecosystems, would it be easy to study each one in detail? Of course not!  And therefore, there evolved a system of categorizing the organisms into different groups. Let us study this types of classification.

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What is Classification?

One look at your surroundings will show you what glaring differences and striking similarities are present in all things around you. There is a multitude of life forms that surround you. Not all plants are same and not all animals, same. There is a great deal of variability amongst the living organisms. This is nothing but biological diversity, a term that shows the variety of life on earth.

Classification of organisms is a systematic method of arranging organisms into different groups and subgroups, based on their similarities and their differences.

Advantages of classification

The foremost advantage of classifying organisms is that it makes the study of a wide variety of organisms very easy and convenient. It also shows the interrelationship between various groups. In biology, there is a basic need to identify organisms correctly and place them in the right category. This helps in learning about the large numbers of organisms in an accurate manner. Classifying organisms also helps in increasing the scope of biological sciences.

You can download Diversity in Living Organisms Cheat Sheet PDF by clicking on the Download button below


Types of Classification

Organisms can be classified on the basis of several different factors. According to this, the different factors include the nature of the cell; the mode of nutrition seen in organisms and also based on the body organization. Broadly, the following are the different types of classification.

1] Cell nature –Are cells Prokaryotic or Eukaryotic?


Depending on whether cells of the organisms are prokaryotic or eukaryotic, organisms can be classified into two categories. Prokaryotic organisms have prokaryotic cells, in which nuclei and cell organelles are not demarcated clearly. Eukaryotic organisms, on the other hand, have eukaryotic cells, which have a clear nucleus and membrane-bound cell organelles.

2] Cells – Do they occur Singly or in Clusters?

Organisms can be divided into unicellular and multicellular organisms. If there is only one cell, then it is a unicellular organism. Amoeba is an example of a unicellular organism. Multicellular organisms have many cells which group together forming specialized tissues. These form a single organism. Every group of specialized cells has a specialized function. Example: worms, insects etc.

3] Mode of Nutrition

Depending on the mode of nutrition, organisms can be classified into autotrophs and heterotrophs. Autotrophs can make their own food, by the photosynthesis process. Heterotrophs cannot make their own food and depend on others for their food.

4] Level of Body Organization

Every organism has specialized body parts and body organization. In plants, the different parts include roots, stems, leaves, branches. And in animals, there are specialized organs that perform various functions of breathing, circulation etc.

Solved Question For You

Q: On what basis can you classify plants and animals?

Sol: Plants and animals can be classified on the basis of presence or absence of cell wall. Plants have a cell wall and animals do not have a cell wall. Another basis is the mode of nutrition. Plants are autotrophs (They make their own food). Animals are heterotrophs. (They depend on others for their food)

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