Biology is the study of life. --Bio means life --ology is “the study of” Think of Biology as being a two dimensional http://www.manataka.org/images/Wolves%202.jpg subject… 1st it is structured on a size scale ranging from molecular (such as the molecules that make us up) all the way to global (think of global warming and other weather patterns that effect life around the globe.) 2nd it is enormous in its diversity. Look around you right now and see if there is any diversity in this classroom. What do you think? Now, imagine you are in the park taking a walk…what about diversity there? Get the picture?? Is there a method to the madness?? How do we separate one living thing from another? How do we define LIFE??? Properties of Life: 1. All are organized (order)— Start with the molecule, cell, tissue, organ, organ system, organism Some organisms skip some of the in between steps. 2. All can metabolize (process energy)– That is…they can chemically break down the food they consume into useable parts. Think about the food you eat…do you use it directly? Or do you have to “convert” it first? 3. All can reproduce— All organisms are born with the ability to reproduce but not all do. Some are naturally non-fertile and others are “made” this way. 4. All can regulate their internal environment– (homeostasis) temperature regulation is important to bodily function as well as hormone regulation and insulin regulation 5. All grow and develop– start out as a strand of DNA and eventually become an organism through cell division . 6. All respond to their environment-Why would it be important to respond? What does this characteristic allow us to do? 7. All organisms evolve— This means all organisms change over time. This can be a life long evolution or a seasonal evolution. Life is organized into three domains: 1. Bacteria 2. Archaea 3. Eukarya These domains each have specific organism characteristics that place them in the domain. For instance, Bacteria and Archaea have prokaryotic cells (contain no membrane bound organelles) and Eukarya have eukaryotic cells(contain many membrane bound organelles, particularly the nucleus). Bacteria – “true bacteria” consists of organisms that can make you sick and make objects they inhabit “nasty” (picture your toilet if you don’t clean it for about a month) They are single celled and have a special coating on the outside that protects them from being digested by white blood cells in the body. They are prokaryotes. E. coli is just one example of a common bacteria http://marinebio.org/marinebio/news/letters Domain Archaea/i/anammox_africa.jpg -similar to bacteria. -used to be grouped with bacteria - are prokaryotic cells like bacteria -features different from bacteria separate them into two domains -archaeaic organisms often live in environments too harsh for other organisms to survive in. -”bacteria” living in Yellowstone National Park hot springs live in extreme heat…around 200-240* F. - organisms found living along heat vents at bottom of ocean live in dark, cold environments where little or no other life exists. -Use elements as a source of energy such as sulfur and nitrogen. Domain Eukarya-organisms have eukaryotic cells. -grouped into four kingdoms. Protista Kingdom— -amoeba, euglena, paramecium and other aquatic microorganisms Fungi Kingdom— - mushrooms and molds Plantae Kingdom— -plants -280,000 known plants http://www.canadiangeographic.ca/atlas/Images/Gl ossary/Invertebrate.jpg Animalia Kingdom— -animals -50,000 know vertebrates (animals with a backbone) -750,000 known insects http://images.picturesdepot.com/photo/i/insect _wallpaper-205195.jpg Science is a process…a way to find out more about the world around us. The word Science comes from the latin verb meaning “to know.” So we can say science is a way of knowing. Many sciences exist in the world: Psychology—knowing about the psych or mind Sociology– knowing about the social structures of the world Gerontology– the science of aging Biology—the study of life And the list could go on and on. It is important to “think out of the box” when talking about science. It is much broader in its definition than biology is. For instance, consider this flashlight… Would you use a science process to figure out why it doesn’t work? Biologists use a process to find out more about living things. This consists of a series of steps that lead to conclusions. These steps are called the SCIENTIFIC METHOD: 1. Make observations about the world around you. 2. Ask a question about these observations. 3. Form a hypothesis about your question. An “educated guess” or tentative answer to your question based on what you know. --many times we use a hypothesis to solve everyday problems and don’t even think about it. Remote example. 4. A prediction is formed based on deductive reasoning. This is usually an “if…then” statement. Meaning “if this happens… then this is probably true.” 5. Predictions can be tested by doing experimentation. This is the “fun” part of science!! Experiments are designed to test hypothesis. There must be some comparison involved. For this reason, experiments always consist of two parts: Control—the part of the experiment that remains neutral. Whatever changes in the variable does not change in the control. Variable—the part of the experiment that changes. The test is actually administered to the variable. Variables can only differ from the control by one factor. More than one difference makes it difficult to determine what is causing changes in the variable during the experiment. The control serves as the comparison for the variable. We can show a change took place when the variable is different from the control after the experiment takes place. Sometimes the results of the experiment don’t match the prediction. If this happens, you can rewrite your prediction and retest!!! Isn’t science wonderful!! You are never wrong! Imagine how simple classes would be if you could change all your wrong answers on tests and resubmit them for a better grade!!! 6. Conclusions are drawn at the end of experiments to help make it easier to understand what happened. Since science is not definite, you can never prove anything, just falsify or support your hypothesis!! 7. Publishing is important to the scientific method. Can you think of a reason why it would be important to publish the results you get from an experiment? Is all printed material dealing with science believable? How can you separate the “real” science from the stuff that is really “out there?” Two things are important here. Ask yourself, “Is this biologically possible?” “Can I perform an experiment to show this is possible?” (in other words, is it testable?) True Science is biologically possible and can be tested. -Effects of drugs on cancer cells -Effects of herbicides on weeds Pseudoscience is not biologically possible and cannot be tested. -goat people discovered in remote mountain village -3 year old girl gives birth to baby boy What about things like bigfoot and UFO’s and Lochness?? How about ghosts and poltergeists and little green men?? Can they be tested? Can we prove they don’t exist? We put them in a “grey” area of science that is neither true nor pseudo.