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Biology - Study of Life

biology the scientific study of living organisms and their interactions with the environment
organism a living thing, anything that can carry out life processes independently
cell in biology, the smallest unit that can perform all life processes; cells are covered by a membrane and contain DNA and cytoplasm
metabolism the sum of all chemical processes that occur in an organism
system changing, organized group of related parts that interact to form a whole
homeostasis the maintenance of constant internal state in a changing environment; a constant internal state that is maintained in a changing environment
evolution generally, in biology, the process of change by which new species develop from preexisting species over time
adaptation the process of becoming adapted to an environment; an anatomical, physiological or behavioral change that improves a population's ability to survie
acclimation process in which an individual organism adjusts to a change in its environment such as altitude, temperature so that it can maintain performance across a wide range of environmental conditions
hypothesis a testable idea or explanation that leads to scientific investigation
independent variable condition or factor that is manipulated (changed) by a scientist during an experiment
dependent variable experimental data collected through observation and measurement
theory proposed explanation for a wide variety of observations and experimental results that explains why a phenomenon occurs
law an explanation for a wide variety of observations and experimental results that explains what happens with a specific set of parameters
feedback loop biological mechanism whereby homeostasis is maintained. This occurs when sensory information is collected, evaluated, and acted upon to return to a steady state.
stimulus detectable change (physical or chemical) in the environment of an organism that results in some functional activity
effector a bodily tissue, structure, or organ (such as a gland or muscle) that becomes active in response to communication from the control center
control center often the brain, the part of the feedback loop responsible for determining if a disturbance has occurred
control group The group in a controlled experiment that lacks the independent variable.
experimental group The group in a controlled experiment that includes the independent variable.
negative feedback process that brings a system closer to a target of stability or homeostasis.
positive feedback process that pushes a system farther away from a target of stability or homeostasis.
Created by: lpgullett
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