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WGU Natural Science

WGU Integrated Natural Science Study Questions

What is Scientific Method? The steps scientists use to create explanations based on evidence they gather.
How is scientific method used in the process of science to solve problems? By keen observations, rational analysis, and experimentation.
Observation Information gathered about the natural world using tools or human senses.
Hypothesis A tentative answer to a scientific question; a prediction about the outcome of a scientific investigation.
Prediction An educated guess about what will happen.
Reproducible Results A result of a scientific investigation that has been replicated by others.
Conclusion An inference or summary of the meaning of the results of a scientific investigation.
How does creativity play a role in each of the steps of scientific process? By involving mental processes through creative problem solving and through the discovery of new ideas and concepts; or new associations of existing ideas or concepts, fueled by the process of either conscious or unconscious insight.
What did Galileo do to challenge Aristotle's belief that heavy objects fall faster than lighter objects? Dropped a rock and a feather from the "Leaning Tower of Pisa" and determined that they fell at the same rate.
How is what he (Galileo) did related to the scientific method? He came up with a question and a hypothesis. He then tested his hypothesis and collected data that resulted in his conclusion.
Science A systematic way of learning about the natural world that relies on observation, evidence, and objective investigation.
What is important when designing a controlled science experiment? A test that excludes the variable being investigated in a scientific experiment. Ideally, the experimental test and the control should differ by only one variable.
Why is it important that results of scientific experiments are reproducible? It helps show that the experiment is valid. Because a number of different people did the experiment and got the same results, we know the results weren't simply because of a mistake.
Field of Study A scientific investigation that is not conducted in a laboratory setting.
Computational Modeling A model created or designed using computers.
Experiment A scientific investigation in which a scientist manipulates one or more conditions to see the results.
Controlled Experiment An experiment in which one condition is allowed to vary and all the others are kept constant.
Independent Variable In a controlled experiment, the condition that the scientist changes on purpose.
Dependent Variable In a controlled experiment, the condition that the scientist observes to see the effects of changing the independent variable.
Controlled Variable A condition that is kept the same throughout an experiment.
What is the Principle of Falsifiability? For a hypothesis to be considered scientific, it must be testable and aim to prove things to be false, rather than aiming to prove things true.
Fact An observation or phenomenon that all competent observers agree on.
Theory A well-tested, well-supported, broad explanation for all available observations and data.
Law A well-tested, well-supported description of an aspect of the natural world.
Why is evidence important in evaluating scientific claims? It proves if a claim is right or wrong.
How is evidence used to support or refute scientific claims? If the data supports the claim, they provide evidence that the claim is valid. If the data refutes the claim, they provide evidence that the hypothesis or claim is NOT valid.
Evidence Data or observations that support or refute a scientific claim.
How might a systems approach be helpful in studying science? It enables scientists to take into account the various parts of a system when making predictions about system behavior.
How are science and technology similar and different? Technology is applied science, it can enhance science, and science can lead to new technology.
Reductionist Approach An approach to studying a system in which the focus is on each part of the system in isolation.
Systems Approach An approach to studying a system in which the focus is on the system as a whole and the interaction between the parts of the system.
Technology The application of science to fulfill a need or address a problem.
Biology The science that studies living organisms; the study of life.
Chemistry The science that studies the interactions between compounds and molecules.
Physics The science that studies forces, energy, heat, sound, light, and subatomic energies.
Geology The science that studies rocks.
Astronomy The science that studies the universe and the objects in it, including stars, planets, nebulae, and galaxies.
Why is an integrated approach very helpful and useful in learning more about our natural world? All the sciences are important in explaining the natural world--biology, physics, chemistry, earth science. Understanding the basics of each are will allow you to understand the other areas in more detail.
What are some examples of questions that science CAN answer? How many western sage grouse currently live in Utah? What type of habitat do sage grouse need to thrive? How do male sage grouse attract mates?
What are some examples of questions that science CANNOT answer? Should sage grouse be protected as an endangered species? Do we value having sage grouse around? How do we protect the rights of owners of land that include sage grouse habitat?
How does science differ from art and religion? Science tends to ask "how" questions. Science is measurable, quantitative, repeatable, and it's based on physical natural phenomenon. Religion asks "why" and Art asks "who".
What is the equation for Work? Work= Force x Distance
How does a simple machine affect work output? It makes the work easier to perform.
How does a simple machine affect force output? By accomplishing one or more of the following functions: Transferring a force from one place to another, Changing the direction of a force, Increasing the magnitude or speed of a force, Increasing the distance or speed of a force.
Can a simple machine reduce the total amount of work that is done to move an object? Why or why not? No, it cannot reduce the amount of work because the work has to get done, it only reduces the amount of force.
Mass gram (g)
Time second (s)
Length meter (m)
Electric current ampere (A)
Temperature Kelvin (K), Celsius (°C), & Fahrenheit (F)
Volume liter (L)
Energy Joule (J)
Power watt (w)
Force Newton (N)
Electrical resistance ohm (Ω)
Electrical potential volt (v)
Nano (n): 10^-9
Micro (µ): 10^-6
Centi (c): 10^-2
Milli (m): 10^-3
Kilo (k): 10^3
Giga (G): 10^9
Mega (M): 10^6
What is pH? p= potential and H= Hydrogen
What does it (pH) measure? A measure of how acidic or basic a substance is. pH less than 7 is an acid. pH greater than 7 is a base. pH exactly 7 is neutral.
Potential Energy Stored energy that has the potential to do work.
How does a change in mass of an object affect the gravitational potential energy of that object? How does a change in height affect it? The greater the mass, the greater the force of gravity it exerts, so the more attracted to each other they will be. When objects are pulled further apart, the force of gravity weakens. The distance increases as the force decreases.
Kinetic Energy Energy due to an object's motion.
Explain what happens to kinetic energy when the mass and speed of an object changes. When two objects have the same mass and one object has a greater speed, the object with the greater speed has more kinetic energy. When two objects have equal speed, the object with the greater mass has more kinetic energy.
Thermal Energy Another form of kinetic energy; the internal energy of an object due to the kinetic energy of its atoms and/or molecules.
Law of Conservation of Energy Energy cannot be created or destroyed.
Gravitational Force Any two objects that have mass will exert a gravitational force. The more massive the objects, the greater the gravitational force between them. The further the objects are away from each other, the smaller the gravitational force between them.
Projectile Motion An object that is projected vertically by some means and continues in motion with its own inertia while gravity acts on the object at the same time and will eventually bring it down to the ground.
How does an object become a satellite? When an object orbits around a primary object at a constant distance.
Explain the role of gravity in the formation of solar systems and galaxies. How does gravity create spinning disks of material that form solar systems and galaxies? Orbits of planets, tidal locking, and the sun and stars. Other ways are, classification of planets, dwarf planets, and other objects, orbits of comets, asteroids, and moons, presence of the asteroid belt, subsurface oceans on moons of gas giants.
Explain the movement of objects in our solar system. Planets orbit the sun because of gravity. Mercury/Mars don't have enough pull to have an atmosphere. Jupiter/Saturn have a high gravitational pull. The objects are always pulling towards each other. Planets orbit the sun counter-clockwise direction.
Why does the same side of the earth moon always face the earth? Because the monthly spin rate and orbital revolution rate are the same of the Earth and the Moon.
What role does gravity play in the formation of stars? The thermal pressure inside the star far exceeds gravity's ability to hold the star together, and the outer layers of the star evaporate away as planetary nebula.
What role does it (gravity) play throughout the life of a star? Over the course of seconds, gravity pulls the massive outer layers of the star towards the iron and nickel core causing the star to explode as a supernova.
What is the relationship between thermal energy and gravitational force in a star? Thermal energy exerts a force from the center of a star outwards. Gravity exerts a force on the outside of a star, pushing inwards towards the center. When these two forces balance out, the star has reached its size and mass.
How does gravitational field affect light? Light curves.
How will light behave in a black hole? A black hole is so massive that it traps light and any unfortunate matter that happened to get caught in the trajectory leading into the singularity.
Newton's Law of Universal Gravitation Between any two objects with mass, there exists a gravitational force between them.
Explain what happens to the gravitational force when there is a change in mass and/or distance. If the mass of object 1 increases, the Gravitational Force would increase. If the distance between objects 1 & 2 increases, the force when the objects are a distance of 4 apart, is a 25 percent of the force when the objects are at a distance of 2 apart.
Coulomb's Law of Electrical Force Two positively charged objects will repel, as will two negatively charged objects. An object with a positive charge and an object with a negative charge will attract.
Compare and contrast Coulomb's Law and Newton's Law. Law of Universal Gravitation: a force that acts between objects will mass; only an attractive force. Coulomb's Law: a force that acts between charged objects; can attract or repel. Both: follow the Inverse Square Law
What are vector quantities? Quantities that have measure of both magnitude as well as direction. Examples: velocity, force, acceleration, and momentum.
What are scalar quantities? Quantities that don't have direction, only magnitude. Examples: speed, pressure, mass, energy, and temperature.
Inverse Square Law A law stating that the intensity of an effect such as illumination or gravitational force changes in inverse proportion to the square of the distance from the source.
Magnetic Force Attraction or repulsion that arises between electrically charged particles because of their motion.
What makes an object magnetic? Due to moving charged, spinning in the same direction. Electron spin and revolution produce it.
Magnetic Field The region of magnetic influence around a magnetic pole or around a moving charged particle.
How does magnetic force differ from electrical force? Magnetic force on a moving charge is always normal to the direction of the movement and the magnetic field whereas the force by an electric field on a moving charge is always parallel to the electric field and does not depend on the direction of movement.
What happens to a charged particle in a magnetic field? The charge must be moving. Magnetism will not work on stationary charges. It cannot be moving on a parallel field to the magnetic force.
Identify whether each of the following characteristics applies to electricity, magnets, or both. E: a flow of charges measured by current, resistance measured in ohms. M: always has a north and south pole. Both: opposites attract, produced by charged particles that are spinning in the same direction but are not flowing from one atom to another.
Newton's First Law An object in motion tends to stay in motion, an object at rest tends to stay at rest, unless acted upon by a net force.
Newton's Second Law The acceleration of an object as produced by a net force is directly proportional to the magnitude of the net force, in the same direction as the net force, an inversely proportional to the mass of the object.
Newton's Third Law For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.
Describe what the equation F=MA means and how it's related to Newton's Second Law. The more force you apply, the more acceleration you get out and the more mass that exists, the less acceleration that you get out. Force= Mass x Acceleration Acceleration= Force/Mass
Wave A vibration that travels.
Transverse Wave A wave in which the medium vibrates in a direction perpendicular to the direction in which the wave travels. Ex: Light waves.
Longitudinal Wave A wave in which the medium vibrates in a direction parallel to the direction in which the wave travels. Ex: Sound waves.
Wavelength The distance between successive crests, troughs, or identical parts of a wave.
Frequency The number of vibrations per unit time. For a wave, the number of crests that pass a particular point per unit time.
Amplitude The maximum displacement on either side of the equilibrium (midpoint) position.
Period Time required for a vibration or a wave to make a complete cycle.
Reflection The returning of a wave to the medium from which it came when it hits a barrier.
Refraction The oath of a wave bends due to moving from one medium to another.
Diffraction Spreading a wave when passing through a hole.
Interference The interaction of two or more waves with each other.
Constructive Interference The interference of two or more waves of equal frequency and phase, resulting in their mutual reinforcement and producing a single amplitude equal to the sum of the amplitudes of the individual waves.
Destructive Interference The interference of two waves of equal frequency and opposite phase, resulting in their cancellation where the negative displacement of one always coincides with the positive displacement of the other.
Doppler Effect The change in frequency of a wave due to the motion of the source (or due to the motion of the receiver).
Blue Shift If you were an observer on the right side, you would see the light from the star is being shifted to higher frequencies and shorter wavelengths.
Red Shift If you were an observer on the left side, you would see the light from the star being shifted toward the longer wavelengths or low frequencies.
What changes the pitch of sound? The frequency of the vibration of the sound wave. Low pitch= low frequency=lower vibrations. High pitch=high frequency=higher vibrations.
Electromagnetic Wave An energy carrying wave produced when an electric charge oscillates.
Types of Electromagnetic Waves Gamma Rays, X-Rays, Ultraviolet, Visible Light, Infrared, Microwaves, and Radio Waves.
How are electromagnetic waves the same? They travel at the same speed.
How are electromagnetic waves different? In frequency and the amount of energy they contain.
Electromagnetic Spectrum The range of electromagnetic waves that extend in frequency from radio waves to gamma rays.
Describe the general structure of an atom. Atoms are made up of electrons (negative charge), neutrons (neutral; no charge), and protons (positive charge). The nucleus (center/heart) is made up of neutrons and protons. Electrons "float" around the nucleus in an electron cloud.
How does electrical force affect protons in the nucleus? The protons repel each other. Electrical force pushes protons apart.
Strong Nuclear Force Gluing nucleons together; it affects all of the particles in the nucleus, regardless of their charge.
Does electrical force affect protons, neutrons, or both? Protons.
Does electrical force make the nucleus tend to split apart or stay together? Split apart
How is electrical force affected by increased distance between nucleons? As distance increases, electrical force decreases.
As the size of the atom increases (greater number of protons), which force, electrical or strong nuclear force has a greater increases in strength? Electrical force.
Does strong nuclear force affect protons, neutrons, or both? Both.
Does strong nuclear force tend to split apart or stay together? Stay together.
How is strong nuclear force affected by increased distance between nucleons? As distance increases, strong nuclear force decreases.
What makes an atom radioactive? Nucleus not being stable.
How do the strengths of the strong nuclear force and electrical force relate to whether an atom is radioactive? Electrical force causing the nucleus of the atom to fall apart.
Where does radiation come from? There are particles and energy that are released and the radiation that results as an atom decays or goes through radioactive splitting.
What does each of the letters in E=mc^2 stand for? E=Energy, m=mass, and c^2=Speed of Light^2
What happens during nuclear fission? A large nucleus splits into smaller pieces, smaller nuclei.
What happens to the mass per nucleon in an atom when it's split into smaller nuclei? The mass is converted to energy.
What happens during nuclear fusion? Small nuclei gets squished together to form a larger nucleus.
How does the mass per nucleon change in nuclear fusion? The mass per nucleon has decreased because some of that energy was converted into energy; mass decreases as energy is released.
How are fusion and fission the same and how do they differ? Same: they lose mass per nucleon as the reaction happens, E=mc^2. Different: fusion=put together, fission= split apart.
Thermonuclear Fusion A way to achieve nuclear fusion by using extremely high temperatures.
What is the general chemical composition of a star? 75% Hydrogen and 25% Helium.
Hertzsprung-Russel Diagram A graph of luminosity versus temperature.
What information about a star is used to categorize them on the H-R Diagram? Their luminosity and temperature.
Describe the specific atoms involved in fusion in star. Two atoms of hydrogen combing together, ot fuse, to form an atom of helium. Some of the mass of the hydrogen is converted into energy.
What is the difference between a hydrogen-burning star and a helium-burning star? Hydrogen-burning: stars that burn hydrogen to create helium and energy. Helium-burning: stars that burn helium to create carbon and energy.
Life cycle of our sun. 1. Stellar nebula 2. Main Sequence 3. Red giant 4. Planetary nebula 5. White dwarf
What determines what a star will become at the end of its life? Mass and gravitational pull.
Main Sequence (Middle Aged) A normal star that is undergoing nuclear fusion of hydrogen into helium.
Red Giant (Aging) A large, old, luminous star that has a relatively low surface temperature and a large diameter, relative to the sun. Burning helium in its core and its temperature rises.
Supergiant Massive stars at an elderly age.
White Dwarf (Dead) A small, hot star that is the leftover center of an older star. Has no hydrogen left and cannot generate any more energy. Can shine for billions of years before completely cooling off.
Neutron Star The remains of high-mass stars after a supernova.
Sun Produces its energy from nuclear fusion of hydrogen.
Mercury A planet that has no moon, is cratered, closest to the sun, smallest, and large temperature changes.
Venus The second planet from the sun and the hottest because of its atmosphere's greenhouse effect; has active volcanoes and no moons.
Earth Third planet from the sun and has one moon.
Mars The fourth planet from the sun and has two moons, large temperature changes.
Asteroid Belt The circumstellar disc in the solar system located roughly between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. It is occupied by numerous irregularly shaped bodies called asteroids or minor planets.
Jupiter The fifth planet from the sun, the largest planet, has 66 moons and a faint ring, strong magnetic field.
Saturn The sixth planet from the sun with the lowest density, 62 moons and a large ring system.
Uranus The seventh planet from the sun, is tipped on its side, a faint ring, and looks blue because of methane and has 27 moons.
Neptune The eighth planet from the sun, has 13 moons, a faint ring, and blue in color because of methane.
Kuiper Belt of Comets A region in the solar system beyond the orbit of Neptune, believed to contain many comets, asteroids, and other small bodies made largely of ice.
Oort Cloud Spherical shell of cometary bodies believed to surround the sun far beyond the orbits of the outermost planets and from which some are dislodged when perturbed to fall toward the sun.
Describe the way the planets orbit the sun. All planets travel in elliptical orbits around the sun. All planets and their larger moons follow orbits that lie roughly in the same plane. All planets, except Venus & Uranus rotate counter-clockwise.
Compare and contrast terrestrial and Jovian planets. Terrestrial planets are small, rocky, and dense. Jovian planets are large, gaseous, and have rings.
Cosmology The study of the entire universe, its structure, and origin.
Big Bang Theory The theory that the physical universe began in a primordial explosion 13.7 billion years ago.
Doppler Red Shift (BBT) The shift of light to longer wavelengths and low frequencies from an object that is moving away from the observer.
Hubble's Law (BBT) The farther away a galaxy is from the Earth, the more rapidly it is moving away from the Earth. Happening in all directions, universe is expanding.
Cosmic microwave background radiation (BBT) The low-level microwave radiation found everywhere in the universe left over from the cooling that followed the Big Bang.
Element abundance (BBT) The percentage of elements found in the universe.
Pure substance An element or compound; a chemical substance with a fixed chemical composition.
Mixture A combination of two or more pure substances.
Examples of Pure Substances All elements an all compounds; Gold (Au), Carbon (C), Water (H2O)
Examples of Mixtures Ocean water and Air.
Homogeneous Mixture A mixture in which the components are evenly distributed.
Heterogenous Mixture A mixture in which components are unevenly distributed.
Solution A homogeneous mixture in which one component is present in a much larger amount than the other component(s). One or more substances are dissolved into another substance.
Solid A state of matter that has a definite shape and definite volume.
Liquid A state of matter that has a definite volume, but not definite shape.
Gas A state of matter that has neither a definite shape nor a definite volume.
Describe how adding heat to a substance affects the motion and arrangement of the particles. Temperature increases because its particles gain kinetic energy as they absorb heat. When the particles absorb the energy, their energy goes up. If you add enough heat energy, the particles might start moving fast enough to cause a phase change.
Describe how removing heat from a substance affects the motion and arrangement of the particles. When you remove heat from a substance, its temperature decreases because its particles lose energy. If you cool a liquid, its particles slow down and they eventually get to a point where they can't move past each other anymore.
Arrangement of water molecules when they MELT. Molecules begin to move around more and start to spread out.
Arrangement of water molecules when they FREEZE. Molecules slow down and become more compacted.
Elements Substances made of only one kind of atom.
Nucleons A protons or a neutron because they are inside the nucleus of the atom.
Atomic Number The number of protons in an atom. Determines element.
Mass Number The number of protons and neutrons in an atom.
Atomic Mass The average mass of the protons and neutrons (averaged from all of the isotopes of the atom).
Atomic Mass Unit AMU, unit to measure the mass of an element. The mass of one proton or neutron.
How can you determine the overall charge of an atom if you know the number of protons and the number of electrons? Add them together and they will equal either -1, +1, or 0.
In an electrically neutral atom, what must be true of the number of protons and electrons? In a neutral atom, the number of protons equals the number of electrons.
Valence Electrons An electron in the outermost electron shell of an atom.
Isotope Atoms of an element that contain different number of neutrons. Same atom number (protons) and different mass number (neutrons).
How do the chemical and physical properties of isotopes of the same element compare? They have the same chemical properties as each other and physical properties.
How can you determine the number of neutrons in an isotope if you know the atomic number? Subtract the atomic number from the mass number.
How does an atom of carbon-14 (14C) differ from an atom of carbon-12 (12C)? Carbon-12 is stable, Carbon-14 is radioactive.
Metals Found on the left and in the middle of the periodic table.
Nonmetals Found on the top right corner of the periodic table.
Metalloids Found in the diagonal between the metals and nonmetals.
General properties of metals. Shiny, generally solid, good conductor, and malleable and ductile.
General properties of nonmetals. Generally liquid or gas, poor conductors and brittle.
General properties of metalloids. Properties of metals and nonmetals. Not as malleable as metal, but not quite as brittle as a nonmetal. Semi-conductor; conducts electricity better then nonmetals, but not as well as metals.
Alkali Metals Group 1, 1 valence electron, Lose 1 electron, soft, silvery, gray, highly reactive metals.
Alkaline Earth Metals Group 2, 2 valence electrons, Lose 2 electrons, react with water to form alkaline solutions, somewhat reactive.
Chalcogens Group 16, 6 valence electrons, Gains 2 electrons, means "are forming", many metal ores contain oxygen and sulfur and those are the two most common chalcogens.
Halogens Group 17, 7 valence electrons, Gains 1 electron, means "salt forming".
Noble Gases Group 18, 8 valence electrons, do not lose, gain, or share electrons, gases at normal temperature and pressure almost completely nonreactive.
Group A column on the periodic table. (vertical, 1-18)
Family Another term for group.
Period A row on the periodic table. (horizontal 1-7)
Compound A substance made up of two or more elements that are chemically bonded together.
Ion An atom or group of atoms with an overall electric charge.
When an atom loses an electron, what kind of ion does it become? It becomes a POSITIVE ion.
What kind of ion does it become when it gains an electron? It becomes a NEGATIVE ion.
What happens to valence electrons when an ionic bond forms? Valence electrons can be formed or lost to form ionic bonds.
What kinds of elements tend to lose electrons easily. Metals.
What kinds of elements tend to gain electrons easily? Nonmetals.
How can you use the periodic table to identify elements that will form an ionic bond with each other? If the compound contains a metal and a nonmetal.
Molecule The smallest unit of a compound.
Ionic Bond An electrostatic attraction between a positively charged ion and a negatively charged ion.
What happens to valence electrons when a covalent bond forms? They are shared.
How can you use the periodic table to identify elements that will form a covalent bond with each other? If two or more nonmetals are bonded together in a compound.
Covalent Bond A chemical bond resulting from the sharing of electrons between two or more nonmetals.
What happens to valence electrons in a metallic bond? They are able to move easily and fluidly around all the different metal atoms. They aren't just limited to two atoms.
How can you use the periodic table to identify elements that will form metallic bonds with each other? If they are both metals.
Conductors Electric current that can flow freely. Outer electron are loosely bound and free to move through material.
Insulators Prevents flow of electrons. More stable atoms. Outer electrons are tightly bound.
Malleable Able to be pounded into a thin sheet.
Ductile Able to be pulled or stretched.
Thermal Conductor A substance that transmits heat easily.
Electrical Conductor A substance that transmits electric current easily.
Metallic Bond A chemical bin in which metal atoms are joined together by freely flowing. Loosely held electrons.
Silicates Make up most of the earth's crust, contain silicon and oxygen, rock forming mineral, easily form bond.
Non-silicates Contain no silicon.
How are rocks related to minerals? They are a combination of one or more minerals.
How are Sedimentary rocks formed? Formed from other pieces of rock or precipitated from a liquid. Organic: formed from plant/animal debris.
What are the main categories of Sedimentary rocks? Clastic: pieces of other rocks and mechanically weathered. Chemical: formed from plant/animal debris.
Examples of Sedimentary rocks. Conglomerate and Dolomite.
How are Igneous rocks formed? Formed in magma or lava.
What are the 2 main categories of Igneous rocks? Intrusive: formed below the earth's surface, cool slowly, large crystals, and plutonic. Extrusive: formed when rock has erupted, cools quickly, small crystals, and volcanic.
Examples of Igneous rocks. Granite and Basalt.
How are Metamorphic rocks formed? Formed by heat, pressure, and chemically processes.
What are the 2 main categories of Metamorphic rocks? Foliated: layered or banded appearance. Non-foliated: layered or solid appearance.
Examples of Metamorphic rocks. Gneiss and Marble.
Granite Igneous, intrusive, has larger grain crystals.
Conglomerate Sedimentary, large rounded particles filled with smaller particles.
Gneiss Metamorphic, foliated, banded appearance and course minerals.
Limestone Sedimentary, organically or chemically.
Dolomite Sedimentary, chemical, and precipitated similar to limestone.
Basalt Igneous, extrusive, and small, refined crystals.
What are the layers of the Earth? Crust, Mantle, Lithosphere, Asthenosphere, Outer Core, and Inner Core.
Crust Outermost layer, all living things on Earth live on or in it. Rock that make it up contain a lot of silicon and oxygen. Solid, thinnest and coldest layer, rigid and brittle.
Mantle Underneath the crust. Rocks, solid, most of Earth's volume.mass, denser and hotter than the crust.
Lithosphere Crust+uppermost mantle, rocks, solid, thin, and brittle.
Asthenosphere Lower part of the upper mantle, rocks, solid, but fluid, thick, and plastic,
Outer Core Below the mantle, iron and nickle, liquid, densest layer and hottest layer.
Inner Core Inside the outer core; the center, iron, solid, and generate magnetic field.
P-waves Primary waves, longitudinal waves. They move by compressing and expanding rock. They are the fastest earthquake waves. They can travel through solid, liquids, and gases.
S-waves Secondary waves, transverse waves. They move by causing rock to move up in a up-and-down or side-to-side motion. Slower and can only travel through solids.
How does the behavior of S-waves tell us that Earth's mantle is solid? The fact that the S-waves CAN travel through the mantle tells us that the mantle is solid rock, not magma.
How does the behavior of S-waves tell us that Earth's outer core is liquid? The S-wave shadow pattern tells us that S-waves cannot travel through earth's core. Therefore, we know that at least part of the core is liquid.
Where does Earth's magnetic field come from? Comes from the inner core because of the iron.
What is the theory of plate tectonics? The theory that there are different plates which move to cause continental drift. The theory that the continents were once all connected and through continental drift oft the plates, were separated.
What evidence supports the theory of plate tectonics? Fit to continents, fossil similarities, magnetic striping, distribution of earthquakes and volcanoes.
How did the discovery of seafloor spreading contribute to our understanding of plate tectonics? When the volcanic eruption of lava emerges from the rift valley in a mid-ocean ridge, it pushes up between plates, causing them to move.
What is the theory of continental drift? As the tectonic plates moved, this caused the continents to drift apart.
What information was Wegener lacking when he created his hypothesis? He could not explain how they moved because the geologist believed that the earth was a solid sphere.
What is the role of convection currents in plate tectonics? As the lava flows out from the mantle to form a new crust, it pushes and slides past the other plates, causing movements.
Divergent Movement & Processes Associated: apart, Landforms that develop as a result: Volcanoes, Location and Example on Earth: Africa's Great Rift Valley
Convergent Movement & Processes Associated: together, Landforms that develop as a result: volcano chains, Locations and Examples on Earth: Tonga Trench.
Transform Movement & Processes Associated: sliding past, Landforms that develop as a result: mountains, Locations and Examples on Earth: San Andreas Fault
Oceanic-Oceanic Older plate, goes under the other (subduction). Volcanoes and ocean trenches. Ex: Aleutian Islands.
Oceanic-Continental Ocean plate goes under the continental plate (subduction), volcanoes. Ex: Cascades Mountains.
Continental-Continental They hit each other ans squish upwards, Mountains. Ex: Himalayas
Rift Valleys Divergent
Subduction Convergent
Lateral Faults Transform
Volcanoes Divergent
Mid-Ocean Ridge Divergent
Chains of Volcanic Islands Convergent
Very tall Non-volcanic Mountains Convergent
Weathering Break down of rocks.
Mechanical Weathering The physical breakdown of rocks. It breaks rocks into smaller pieces, but it doesn't change the overall composition of the rock.
Chemical Weathering The chemical composition of rock changes. The minerals in the rock chemically react with other substances to form new substances.
Frost Wedging Areas that have a large amount of precipitation and rapid changes in weather from below to above freezing temps. The water flows into the crack in the rocks and freezes. As it expands, it pushes the rock apart. Causes road bumps.
Exfoliation The loss of outer parts of a rock in layers due to a large sudden decreases in pressure on the rock. This produces thin layers that break off. Found in glaciers.
Thermal Expansion Causes rocks to crack and crumb when the temperature changes rapidly causing them to expand and contract. Causes the rocks to breakdown.
Crystal Growth This happens when minerals that are dissolved in water and crystallize in the cracks of the rock and grow, causing the rock to split apart. Causes the rock to break into smaller rocks.
Tree Roots Plant action as the root grows can break the rock apart.
Abrasion The breakdown of rock due to collision of other rocks together. The rocks become smooth.
Dissolution The dissolving of the rock in water causing the soluble minerals to wash away.
Oxidation The reaction of a mineral with oxygen in the air to create a new mineral.
Hydrolysis A mineral reacts with water to form new substances.
How does acid rain contribute to weathering? Chemically breaking down minerals that are in the rocks and soil.
Erosion When pieces of rock or sediment that are carried from one place to another.
How is Erosion different than weathering? In weathering, rocks are broken down into smaller pieces; Erosion, pieces of rock carried from one place to another.
Process of Erosion due to Gravity Produces erosion called mass wasting by causing the movement of sediment down slope due to gravitational force. Erosion due to gravity can create a landslide; this happens when a large amount of soil and rock suddenly fall down slop due to gravity.
Process of Erosion due to Surface Water Can carry relatively large sediment particles and it can carry them over long distances and in large quantities. River or stream after a flood.
Process of Erosion due to Groundwater Water that exists below the ground; as it moves underground, it can carry sediment and minerals away. Caves and caverns.
Process of Erosion due to Wind Occurs in areas with a lot of loose, light sediments, not a lot of plants to anchor the sediment and a lot of wind. Desert and beaches.
Process of Erosion due to Glaciers Act like giant bulldozers. As they move across the land, they scrape up pretty much everything in their path, regardless of size. Can carry huge quantities of sediment and they can also carry extremely large sediment pieces.
Convection Currents Movement of matter as a result of temperature differences.
Local Winds Created by the earth's surface heating unevenly. The cell is created by the rising of warm air from the warm surface. As it rises, it cools and sinks, causing a convection cell. The high pressure, cool air sinking moves to low pressure, warm air rising.
Hadley Cells Same as local winds, but based on a global scale caused by the different amount of sunlight received on the Earth.
Troposphere 1st layer of the atmosphere that is the closest to the earth's soil. 90% of the mass, thinnest; where weather occurs, temperature decreases.
Stratosphere 2nd layer of the atmosphere; where the ozone is located; temperature increase due to the ozone.
Mesosphere 3rd layer of the atmosphere; meso=middle, temperature decreases, cold.
Thermosphere 4th layer of the atmosphere, absorbs UV radiation and X-Rays.
Exosphere Last layer of the atmosphere; where atoms and molecules can escape to outer space.
Ionosphere Not a true layer. Lives between the thermosphere and upper part of the mesosphere; collects ion from the atmosphere, where the auroras are located (northern and southern lights).
Components of the Atmosphere (fixed income amounts) Nitrogen, Oxygen, Argon, Neon, Helium, Methane, and Hydrogen.
Components of the Atmosphere (variable amounts) Water vapor, Carbon Dioxide, ozone, Carbon Monoxide, Sulfur Dioxide, Nitrogen Dioxide, and particles.
What role does carbon dioxide play in the atmosphere? Keeps plants alive.
Continental Arctic Bitterly cold, dry, stable- Greenland.
Continental Polar Cold, dry, stable- Alaska & Canada.
Continental Tropic Hot, dry, unstable at surface- Mexico & Southwestern US.
Maritime Polar Cool, moist, usually unstable- North Atlantic & Pacific Ocean.
Maritime Tropic Warm, moist, usually unstable- Caribbean Sea & Gulf of Mexico.
Maritime Arctic Cool, most, unstable- Arctic.
Cold Front Dense, cold air moves under warm air and pushes air up.
Warm Front Less dense, warmer air mass flows upward over more dense cooler air. Frontal lifting.
What happens to the weather when a cold front moves into an area? Produces thunderstorms and heavy rain or snow.
What happens to the weather when a warm front moves into an area? Brings drizzly rain or light snow, followed by warm and clear weather.
Coriolis Effect Earth's rotation greatly affects the path of moving air. Moving bodies (such as air) deflect to the right in the Northern Hemisphere and to the left in the Southern Hemisphere.
Low pressure center (cyclone) Usually associated with wetter, warmer, and lousy weather, ascending air, horizontal winds, counter-clockwise rotation.
High pressure center (any-cyclonic) High pressure area created by sinking cold air.
Thunderstorm Humid air rises, cools, and condenses into a single, cumulus cloud. When fed by unstable, moist air, thundercloud.
Hurricanes Rising warm air creates low pressure. Winds rotate around a central low-pressure. Continuous supply of energy from warm water--weakness as fuel is cut off (land fall or cooler water).
Tornadoes Rotating column of air that moves around a low-pressure core. Reaches from a thundercloud to the ground.
Greenhouse Effect Trapping of heat in the Earth's atmosphere.
Greenhouse Effect's impact on the atmosphere. Greenhouse gases in the air strongly absorb infrared radiation. This traps more energy in the atmosphere, heating both the atmosphere and surface. GH gas molecules such as carbon dioxide absorb infrared radiation as vibrations of their chemical bonds.
Seismometer A tool that is used to measure and record ground movement.
Richter Scale A numerical scale for expressing the magnitude of an earthquake on the basis of seismograph oscillations.
Global Positioning System (GPS) Consists of a network of 27 satellites, 24 of which are functioning at any given time. Orbits allow complete coverage of earth's surface. GPS is actually just the receiver unit. Navigation, mapping, tracking organisms, studying plate movements, etc.
Infrared Imaging Thermal imaging cameras detect radiation in the infrared range of the electromagnetic spectrum and produce images of that radiation, called thermograms.
Satellite Remote Sensing Use of satellites or other high-altitude devices to collect visual or other data on Earth's surface.
Radar (Doppler Radar) Radio Detection and Ranging. Radio waves bounce off surfaces.
Population Group of individuals of a single species that occupies a given area (studies focus on size and how it changes with time).
Community Consists of all the organisms that live within a given area (studies focus on interactions between species).
Ecosystem A level at which scientists study both the biotic and abiotic components of the environment; a biological community of interacting organisms and their physical environment.
Abiotic Non-living factors.
Biotic Living factors.
Forest Abiotic: sunlight, soil, mineral, rocks, and water. Biotic: Trees, shrubs, flowering plants, ferns, mosses, lichens, fungi, mammals, birds, reptiles, insects, worms, and microbes.
Desert Abioitc: sand. Biotic: Scorpions, coyotes, snakes, insects, and cacti.
Ocean Abiotic: Sand, shells, rocks, coral, soil, and pebbles. Biotic: fish, whales, plants, plankton, sponges, shrimp, and squids.
Tropical Forest Abiotic: rain, sunlight, soil, and rocks. Biotic: trees, anteaters, frogs, plants, and lemurs.
Pond Abiotic: water, soil, and sunlight. Biotic: fish and plants.
Savannah Abiotic: sunlight, wind, rain, and soil. Biotic: zebras, antelope, lions, elephants, rhinos, trees, fungi, and bushes.
Tundra Abiotic: rain and temperature. Biotic: shrubs, foxes, falcons, caribou, fish, mosses, and reindeer.
Niche Food, space, etc.
Symbiosis Very specialized interactions where the two species that are interacting very closely linked and specific.
Different kinds of symbiosis Commensalism, mutualism, and parasitism.
Commensalism One benefits (win-draw).
Parasitism One benefits at the cost of the other (win-lose).
Mutualism Both benefit (win-win).
Biome Different regions which support various kinds of life.
Freshwater Biome Non-moving water (lakes and ponds), water moving in one direction (rivers and streams) characterized by photic zones, aphotic zones, and benthic zones.
Saltwater Biome Vast realm of open blue water, oceanic currents, surface water turnover, covers 70% of earth's surface.
Tropical Forest Biome Rain a lot, hot, steamy, humid, a lot of plant growth, canopies.
Temperate Forest Biome Pretty good amount of precipitations. Rain in summer, snow in winter. Hot summer, cold winter. Birds, squirrels, chipmunks, rabbits, deer, and foxes.
Coniferous Forest Biome No rain, cold temperatures and harsh winters. Summers are hot, but dry. Conifers or cone-bearing trees, Pine trees, spruce trees, and fir trees.
Tundra Biome No rain, cold, permafrost, shrubby plants, lichens, mosses, not a lot can grow here, reindeer.
Desert Biome No sufficient moisture, hot and dry conditions, cactus, snakes, and lizards.
Savannah Biome Not much rain at all, extensive dry period, fairly hot, zebras, and gazelles.
Temperate Grassland Biome Not much moisture, has seasons, cold winter, hot summer, not a lot of tree growth.
Chaparral Biome Good shot of rain in the winter, relatively warm winter, cooler than the summer, winters tend to be wet, plants can grow during the winter.
Ecological Succession The gradual process by which ecosystems change and develop over time.
Primary succession Growth of organisms on bare rock or on top of lava.
Secondary succession Growth of organisms that occurs after a disturbance.
Intermediate Disturbance Hypothesis Justifies that local species diversity is maximized when ecological disturbance is neither too rare nor too frequent.
What effect do regular moderate disturbances have on ecosystems? As long as they aren't too extreme, they can contribute to biodiversity. This is true because different species make use of different habitats and periodic disturbances guarantee there will always be habitats at varying stages of recovery.
Producers Organisms able to make their own food. Ex: Plants
Autotrophs Organisms that get their energy themselves. Ex: Plants
Consumers Organisms that need to consume or eat another organism to get its energy. Ex: Fox, humans.
Primary Consumers Consumer that eats a producer. Ex: Rabbit--eats plants.
Secondary Consumers Consumer that eats a primary consumer. Ex: Fox--eats rabbit.
Tertiary Consumers Consumer that eats secondary consumer. Ex: Shark--eats seal.
Heterotrophs Organisms that get their energy from a different source, not itself. Ex: Fox, humans,
Decomposers Special group of heterotrophs. They consume dead, organic material. Dead animals, leaves that fall to the ground. Ex: bacteria and fungi--mushrooms.
Herbivores Animal that only eats plants. Ex: Deer.
Carnivores Animal that only eats meat. Ex: Lion.
Omnivores Animal that eats both meat and plants. Ex: Bear.
Explain the transfer of energy from the Sun through the food chain. The producers depend on the sun to do photosynthesis. They need the suns energy to make the food that all consumers eat too. They energy moves through each level.
Describe how organisms use energy contained in their food supply. Producers receive energy from the sun, creating their own energy-rich molecules and food. Consumers gain their energy by eating producers or other consumers; they use the energy to build biomass feces and maintenance (energy required to live on).
What happens to energy as it moves from the first trophic level to the second and third trophic levels? Energy is lost as you go up the food chain.
How much energy is transferred between trophic levels? 10%
Why is energy lost t o the environment during respiration? When energy is transformed from one form to another, energy gets lost to the environment as heat. Every chemical reaction involves some energy loss to the environment.
Difference between organic and inorganic compounds. The main difference is the presence of a carbon atom; organic compounds will contain a carbon atom, while almost all inorganic compounds do not.
Carbon Cycle Step 1 Carbon enters the atmosphere as carbon dioxide from respiration (breathing) and combustion (burning).
Carbon Cycle Step 2 Carbon dioxide is absorbed by producers to make carbohydrates in photosynthesis. These producers then put off oxygen.
Carbon Cycle Step 3 Animals feed on the plants thus passing the carbon compounds along the food chain. Most of the carbon the animals consume is exhaled as CO2. This is through respiration. The animals and plants eventually die.
Carbon Cycle Step 4 The dead organisms are eaten by decomposers in the ground. The carbon that was in their bodies is returned tot he atmosphere as CO2. The decomposed plants and animals may be available as fossil fuel in the future for combustion.
Nitrogen Cycle- Fixation First step in the process of making nitrogen usable by plants. Here, bacteria change nitrogen into ammonium.
Nitrogen Cycle-Nitrification This is the process by which ammonium gets changed into nitrates by bacteria. Nitrates are what the plants can then absorb.
Nitrogen Cycle-Assimilation This is how plants get nitrogen. They absorb nitrates from the soil into their roots. Then the nitrogen gets used in amino acids, nucleic acids, and chlorophyll.
Nitrogen Cycle-Ammonification This is part of the decaying process. When a plant or animal dies, decomposers like fungi and bacteria turn the nitrogen back into ammonium so it can reenter the nitrogen cycle.
Nitrogen Cycle-Denitrification Extra nitrogen in the soil gets put back out into the air. There are special bacteria that perform this task as well.
Water Cycle-Evaporation (and Transpiration) Heat from the Sun causes water on Earth (ocean, lakes, etc) to evaporate (turn from liquid to gas) and rise into the sky. This water vapor collects in the sky in the form of clouds. Plants can sweat.
Water Cycle-Condensation As water vapor in the clouds cools down, it becomes water again.
Water Cycle-Precipitation Water falls from the sky in the form of rain, snow, hail, or sleet.
Water Cycle-Collection Ocean and lakes collect water that has fallen. Water evaporates into the sky again and the cycle continues.
Natural Selection Hypothesis that animals with more desirable traits live longer and therefore have more children.
Variation Origin in genetic mutations.
Heritable Traits Alleles that can be passed down from parent to child.
Fitness Traits that are most desired; the ability to have the most children.
Why are adaptations an important component of species' survival? Can relate to many different aspects of an organisms life. Many of the adaptations organisms evolving help them survive. Survival is, after all, usually a requirement for leaving offspring.
Adaptations of animals in extreme environments-- Cold Animals have to be able to retain heat and maintain appropriate body temp to thermoregulate. Animals have evolved behavioral, physiological, and anatomical adaptations relating to heat balance.
Adaptations of animals in extreme environments-- Hot In deserts, animals have to be able to dissipate heat to avoid overheating and maintain appropriate body temp to thermoregulate. Animals have evolved behavioral, physiological, and anatomical adaptations relating to heat balance.
Anatomical Homologies Recurring structures in nature. Anatomy is the same, so that we have the same pieces.
Vestigial Organs "Hidden" anatomical homologies. Whale and snake both have a pelvis and femur like humans, but you can't see them.
Vertebrate Embryo Development Nature doesn't mess with a good thing. Lots of animals look very similar in utero.
Fossil Record Evidence from the past. Looking at skeletal remains building up through time. Bone structure very similar.
Biogeogrpahy Location matters. Darwin's finches. Where you looked made a difference. Animals closely related will look different depending on where they are found.
Common Ancestors Life is all on the same tree. Pedigrees.
DNA Evidence Too much similarity to be random? Genes located within a person, between species. Interspecies testing; 98% chimp similarity with humans. Genetic relation timeline. Increasing genetic similarity.
Linnaean Classification Emphasized on the shared similarities of organisms (physical characteristics, physical similarities).
Levels included in Linnaean Classification (in order) Domain Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus Species
Bacteria (Domain) Prokaryote, cell wall with peptidoglycans, unicellular, autotroph or heterotroph. Ex: Strep or E. Coli.
Archaea (Domain) Prokaryote, cell walls without peptidoglycans, unicellular, autotroph or heterotroph (Can survive in extreme environments). Ex: Methanogens or Halophiles.
Eukarya (Domain) Eukaryote, unicellular (some protists and yeasts), colonial (some protists), or multicellular (most fungi, plantae, and animalia) organisms, cell division by mitosis. Ex: Protista, fungi, plantae, and animalia.
Protista (Kingdom) Eukaryote, cell walls of cellulose; some have chloroplasts, most unicellular, some colonial or multicellular, autotroph or heterotroph. Ex: Amoeba, paramecium, molds, giant kelp.
Plantae (Kingdom) Eukaryote, cell walls with cellulose; chloroplasts, multicellular, autotroph, perform photosynthesis. Ex: Moss, ferns, and flowering plants.
Fungi (Kingdom) Eukaryote, cell walls of chitin, some unicellular, MOST multicellular, heterotroph. Ex: Mushrooms and yeast.
Animalia (Kingdom) Eukaryote, no cell wall and no chloroplasts, multicellular, heterotroph. Ex: Sponges, worms, insects, fishes, and mammals.
Chordata (Phylum) A notochord, a dorsal hollow nerve cord, pharyngeal slits, and a post-anal tail. Ex: mammals, fish, reptiles, and birds.
Echinodermata (Phylum) Spiny skin, all marine, live in marine ecosystems, water vascular system that runs their tube feet that they use to walk around. Ex: sea star and sea urchins.
Porifera (Phylum) Movement is internal. Tiny little cells called choanocytes that have flagella. Porous structure and they draw water through the little holes in their sides and filter particles of food out of the water. Ex: Sponges
Cnidaria (Phylum) Stinging cells they have on their tentacles. Ex: jelly fish, sea anemones, and corals.
Nematoda (Phylum) Intestinal roundworm parasite. Reasonably large in size and they live in the intestines and absorb nutrients from their host. Ex: Roundworms and heartworms.
Arthropda (Phylum) Have lots of jointed legs. Some in water and some on land. Ex: crustaceans and arachnids. centipedes, scorpions, millipedes, and spiders.
Mollusca (Phylum) Some have shells, some don't. Mollusks are shelled animals. Some are predators like the octopus. Many are marine and some are freshwater. Ex: snail, clam, oyster, squids, and octopus.
Annelida (Phylum) Often predators. All marine, some live on land and some are freshwater. Ex: earthworms and leech.
What happens during a chemical reaction? One or more compounds are formed as a result of the rearrangement of atoms. Reactants=substances about to react. Products=newly formed substances.
Why is the law of conservation of matter important in chemical reactions? Mass in an isolated system is neither created nor destroyed by chemical reactions or physical transformations. The mass of the products in a chemical reaction must equal the mass of the reactants.
Why is the law of conservation of energy important in chemical reactions? States that atoms are neither created nor destroyed in a chemical reaction--they are just rearranged. Every atom present before a reaction must be present after the reaction--even though the groupings of atoms are different.
Concentration of Reactants One effective way to increase the rate of collisions is to increase the concentration of reactants. The reason is simply that, with higher concentrations, there are more molecules in a given volume, which makes collisions more probable.
Temperature The reason is the higher the temp of a material the faster its molecules are moving, the more forceful the collisions between them the more likely that these collisions will break bonds within reactant molecules
The addition of a catalyst A substance that increases the rate of a chemical reaction by lowering its activation energy. The catalyst may participate as a reactant, but it is then regenerated as a product and it thus available to catalyze subsequent reactions.
Activation Energy The minimum quantity of energy that the reacting species must possess in order to undergo a specified reaction.
How do catalysts affect activation energy? Provides an alternative route for the reaction with a lower activation energy. It does NOT LOWER the activation energy.
How do enzymes speed up chemical reactions in cells? They lower what is called activation energy of a chemical transformation.
Photosynthesis Reactants: Water (H2O) and Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Products: Oxygen (O) and Glucose (C6H12O6) Energy in: Sunlight Energy out: ATP Organelle: Chloroplast Organisms that do it: Plants Role of ATP: Transferring the energy from one set of reactions to the other.
Cellular Respiration Reactants:Oxygen (O) and Glucose (C6H12O6)Products:Water (H2O) and Carbon Dioxide (CO2)Energy in:Chemical energy Energy out:ATP Organelle:Mitochondria Organisms that do it: Humans, animals, etc. Role of ATP:ATP is being made in CR.
Prokaryotic Characteristics Nucleus absent, no complex membrane bound organelles, DNA is circular, evolved first, size is 0.1 to 10 microns, bacteria and archaea, and are usually unicellular.
Eukaryotic Characteristics Nucleus present, have complex membrane bound organelles, DNA is linear, did not evolve first, size is 10 to 100 microns, animals and plants, and are multicellular.
How do plant cells differ from animal cells? Plant cells have a rigid wall, are made up of cellulose and other materials, have 1 large vacuole and are generally rectangular. Animal cells contain small vacuoles and are generally circular/spherical.
Gene A unit of heredity that is transferred from parent to offspring and is held to determine some characteristic of the offspring.
Allele One of two or more alternative forms of a gene that arise by mutation and are found at the same place on a chromosome.
Dominant Allele The allele that is fully expressed in a heterozygote.
Recessive Allele The allele that is completely hidden in a heterozygote.
Heterozygous Different alleles for a character; can produce two different kinds of gametes.
Homozygous "True breeding", carrying identical copies of alleles for a given character.
Genotype An organisms genetic makeup.
Phenotype The physical and physiological traits of an organisms (appearance).
Mendel's Principle of Segregation If two alleles differ, then one is fully expressed and the other is masked.
Mendel's Principle of Independent Assortment When two or more characteristics are inherited, individual hereditary facts assort independently during gamete production, giving different traits an equal opportunity of occurring together.
How does the process of meiosis contribute to independent assortment? It creates an increased number of possible combinations of chromosomes in each gamete.
How does crossing-over contribute to independent assortment? It shuffles the alleles and produces new combinations of alleles in the gametes produced.
How can it (crossing-over) promote genetic variation? By exchanging DNA between two non-sister chromatids to produce genetically unique chromosomes.
Chromosome A threadlike structure of nucleic acids and protein found in the nucleus of most living cells, carrying genetic information in the form of genes.
What causes genetic mutations? When the sequence of nucleotides (A, C, G, T) in an organisms DNA is changed. Also from exposure from UV, X-rays, chemicals, etc.
How does ionizing radiation from radioactive material damage the DNA? By releasing gamma rays, beta and alpha particles. When these forms of radiation strike electrons in the body with enough energy, they free the electrons from the atoms they were orbiting. The free electrons can then strike and damage the DNA directly.
Why are bone marrow cells in the gastrointestinal tract more vulnerable to radiation damage? Cells in the body that divide frequently have less time to repair DNA damage before that DNA is replicated and mutations are passed on.
Why do ultraviolet radiation and radon cause cancer? Exposure to UV light can impair cells' ability to undergo programmed cell death when it is damaged. Without this ability, damaged cells survive, their DNA continues to accumulate mutations, and they ultimately give rise to cancer.
Homeostasis They way that our bodies or any living things bodies coordinates its activities to maintain certain things at certain levels.
Nervous System System of the body that in vertebrates includes the brain, spinal cord, nerves, and sense organs and receives, interprets, and responds to stimuli from inside and outside the body.
Circulatory System The system that circulates blood and lymph through the body consisting of the heart, blood vessels, blood, lungs, lymph, and the lymphatic vessels, and glands. Also called the cardiovascular system.
Respiratory System The system by which oxygen is taken into the body and an exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide takes place. Consisting of the nasal passages, pharynx, trachea, bronchi, and lungs.
Digestive System The system by which ingested food is acted upon by physical and chemical means to provide the body with absorbable nutrients and to excrete waste products. Consists of the mouth, esophagus, stomach, small and large intestines, pancreas & liver.
Excretory System The system that removes excess, unnecessary material from the body fluids of an organisms so as to help maintain internal chemical homeostasis and prevent damage to the body. Consisting of the kidneys, ureters, urethra, and urinary bladder.
Immune System The system that protects against diseases. To function properly, it must detect a wide variety of agents, known as pathogens & distinguish them from healthy tissue. Consists of the thymus, spleen, lymph nodes & lymph tissue, stem cells, WBC, & antibodies.
What is the theory of evolution? A theory that explains how random changes in genetic material and competition for scarce resources causes species to change gradually.
How is it (theory of evolution) a unifying them in biology? Without evolution, biology has thousands of isolated and unrelated facts. Evolution ties those facts together into a single, unified, explanatory framework.
What is biogeography? Dealing with the geographical distribution of animals and plants.
How is it (biogeography) a unifying them in ecology? It accounts for the geographical distribution of species around the world and it explains that closely related species are found in close proximity of one another.
What is genetics? The study of heredity and the variation of inherited characteristics.
How is it (genetics) a unifying theme in biology? The continuity of life depends on the inheritance of biological information in the form of DNA molecules. The genetic information is encoded in the nucleotide sequence of the DNA.
What is plate tectonics? The movement of the earth's plates as well as geologic structures and processes observed on earth, such as the formation of mountain ranges, volcanoes, and fault lines where earthquakes can occur.
How is it (plate tectonics) a unifying theme in earth science? It explains the existence of many geological features such as mountains, volcanoes, and earthquakes, etc.
What is the Big Bang Theory? Theory that the universe may have been created in a huge explosion nearly 14 billion years ago.
How is it (Big Bang Theory) a unifying theme in astronomy? It accounts for the on-going expansion of our universe.
How do discoveries and advancements in science have the ability to impact areas outside of science? Research on the environment, habitat, climate change, and endangered species have led to the implementation of policies that impact other areas such as business, commerce, politics, and foreign relations.
Chemistry and Biology Every living thing has a chemical makeup, so the study of any living thing involves studying its chemistry.
Physics and Chemistry One explains why an object has certain properties and the other explains how the objects move and use those properties. One is the world at a distance and the other is the world up close.
Physics and Astronomy Physics grew from the study of our natural world in astronomy. These two reunite to uncover the origins of the universe and its evolution.
Earth Science and Physics Earth science looks to physics to model the earths currents and magnetic field.
Earth Science and Chemistry Earth science depends on chemistry to determine what the earth is made up.
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