Advanced Placement Biology Course Syllabus

Advanced Placement Biology Course Syllabus 2015-2016
Course Description
Biology is presented as one form of scientific inquiry, the process of channeling human curiosity into purposeful exploration,
discovery, and exploration of observable natural phenomena. Biology is the study of life, but it is most important as a shared
method of asking questions all humans have about life and living things, and communicating responses to the questions in clear
and understandable forms.
In this course, students will be taught and encouraged to continually pose questions about the subject matter. Through exploration
and discovery of the phenomenon at the core of each lesson, students will be guided to answer their own questions and be able
to discuss the phenomenon in ways that reflect sound scientific practices. Biology is presented as a living process, one that carries
a body of current understandings and a method of building on those understandings to either deepen them or replace them with
better explanations. Evolutionary themes which unify all biology disciplines are often ignored in standard biology courses.
Consequently, evolutionary themes will be emphasized in every unit. For example, I will focus on factors used in making
phylogenetic trees, Evolution of Earth and organic molecules; the basics of embryology etc. In particular, we will explore the
eight themes identified as the focus for AP-level Biology instruction and their relationship to evolution:
 Science as a Process
 Evolution
 Energy Transfer
 Continuity and Change
 Relationship of Structure to Function
 Regulation
 Interdependence in Nature
 Science, Technology, and Society
Course Goals
 Foster a love of science, especially in terms of Biology.
 Provide learners with chances to inquire about natural phenomena, asking natural and well-formed questions.
 Expose learners to how the scientific method is applied in studying living things.
 Empower learners to explore natural phenomena in order to answer their own questions.
 Train learners to draw conclusions from observations in order to construct their own understanding of biological
 Build skills for learners to communicate their questions, observations, findings and conclusions to others interested in
similar questions about living things.
 Expose learners to significant concepts and themes in Biology.
 Tie lessons together in terms of the eight themes which structure AP Biology.
 Assess learners’ ability to ask and answer questions about nature.
 Reinforce an interest in nature and the living things that make up our common environment.
 Provide learners with a set of tools for solving problems that relate to nature and impact the daily lives of learners.
Teaching Strategies
This course is organized into units and lessons. Each lesson incorporates multiple learning activities designed to develop, apply,
and assess specific learning objectives. (See Course Outline, below.)
Concept Development Activities
In order to generate skills for lifelong learning and to employ the most appropriate learning approach for each topic, twenty-five
percent of the lessons will use student-driven, constructivist approaches for concept development. For example, the lesson on
Mendelian Genetics from Unit 11 provides multiple opportunities for learners to take on-screen instruction about Mendel’s
discoveries and produce Punnett Squares that exemplify each of his discoveries. The experience of going from explanation of
the concept to constructing an illustration of it themselves will move the learner’s understanding of those discoveries to a deeper
The remaining lessons will employ direct instruction approaches. Regardless of the approach, students will take full advantage
of the online learning environment, linking to rich online, multimedia, and interactive resources. Developing critical of 21st
Century skills is an important secondary goal of this course.
Application and Inquiry Work Products Application and inquiry will be an integrated part of the lessons, requiring higherlevel cognitive work. Students will submit written work for review, comment, and grading.
Students will also have the opportunity to engage in online (asynchronous) discussions during this course. Discussion topics
provide the chance to dig deeper into specific scientific and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM)
Education Coalition concepts and applications.
Lab Components
The lab activities for science subjects provide learners with hands-on exposure to the scientific concepts they are studying and
exploring. Science instruction is as much about learning how to do science, as it is about developing a conceptual understanding
– labs bring those two elements together.
The twelve primary lab experiences that form the basis of an advanced course in Biology are designed to be conducted in person
with the planning and guidance of a teacher. They are modeled on the labs provided in the College Board AP Biology Lab Manual
for Students. The schedule of these in-person labs is listed in the Lab Schedule section below.
Alternate approaches:
 Informal labs: Sometimes called “kitchen sink” labs, these activities use materials readily available at home or in nonlab facilities within a school. They will provide true hands-on exposure to phenomena without the use scientific
experimental equipment. For example, the lesson “Water: An Essential of Life” includes a series of such informal
hands-on experiences that do not require lab equipment to carry out.
 Interactive simulations: These rich, interactive simulations are open-ended and multi-dimensional. They allow learners
to adjust various factors in a simulated experimental situation to see how the outcome of the procedure changes in
reaction to their inputs. The simulations allow for open-learner exploration, as well as more structured and guided
inquiry into various phenomena. For the topic Evolution in Unit 1, an online simulation on Natural Selection provides
learners with the chance to change certain variables and observe successive generations of species as the population
adapts to the environmental conditions.
 Analysis of experimental data: Experiencing the practice of science need not involve doing every step of the gathering
of data by hand. Many scientists share data sets from observations or experiments, and the questions posed, calculations
performed, and the analysis and interpretation of the results can be quite a powerful lab experience. The tasks included
in this course will point learners to existing data sets, show them an analytical approach, then ask them to perform
calculations, graph, analyze, and report back on that data using solid principles of scientific inquiry.
 Simulated labs: Using various media, such as videos and microscope slides, learners will observe experiments virtually
and then carry out analysis and interpretation of that experience as if they had performed the steps themselves. The
lesson “The Cell Cycle” in Unit 5 provides an example of this alternate approach to labs. It uses a series of photographs
of microscope slides to simulate the experience of taking onion skin cell samples. The microscope slides are presented
for the learner to identify the cell cycle phases and then put the phases in the right sequence.
Lab Schedule
AP biology has 12 recommended lab activities, which constitute 45 days of the school year, approximately 25% of class time.
Lab assignments are hands on and must be completed according to the standard format and are due one day after the completion
of the lab.
Below is a unit-by-unit schedule of the 12 required labs. These labs are based on the College Board AP Biology Lab Manual for
Students. Each lab requires teacher planning and supervision, lab facilities, and equipment. The labs are sequenced based on the
order of the lessons that relate most directly to the labs. The lab numbers reference their sequence in the lab manual. Some units
do not have labs associated with them.
Nature of Life - This unit has no labs.
Unit 1 –Evolution
Lab 8 – Population Genetics and Evolution – pp. 90-98
Unit 2 - Diversity of Life, Part 1
This unit has no labs
Unit 3 – Ecology
Lab 12 – Dissolved Oxygen and Aquatic Primary Production – pp. 136 – 144
Lab 11 – Animal Behavior – pp. 125-135
Unit 4 - Biochemistry
This unit has no labs
Unit 5 – Cells/Cell Cycle
Lab 1 – Osmosis & Diffusion pp. 1-18
Unit 6 – Animal Structure & Function (Part 1)
This unit has no labs
Unit 7 Enzymes/Metabolism/Cellular Respiration
Lab 2 – Enzymes Catalysis & Toothpikase pp. 19-28
Lab 5 – Cell Respiration pp. 54-63
Unit 8 Animal Structure & Function (Part II)
Lab 10 – Physiology of the Circulatory System – pp. 109-124
Unit 9 Photosynthesis
Lab 4 – Plant Pigments and Photosynthesis – pp. 45-53
Unit 10 Plant Evolution/Plant Structure & Function
Lab 9 – Transpiration pp. 99-108
Unit 11- Meiosis/Genetics/Heredity
Lab 3 – Mitosis – pp. 29-44
Lab 7 – Genetics of Organisms – pp.78-89
Unit 12 – Molecular Genetics/Biotechonology
Lab 6 – Molecular Biology – pp.64-77
Unit 13- Animal Structure & Function
This unit has no labs
Unit 14 – Animal Development
This unit has no labs
Student Evaluation
Multiple evaluation tools will be used to assess understanding at all appropriate cognitive levels and to reflect AP assessment
 Lesson-Level Mastery Tests: Each lesson will be accompanied by an AP-style multiple-choice mastery test to assess
mastery of the basic lesson concepts.
 Self-Assessment Lesson Activities: Especially useful in constructivist/inquiry lessons, self-assessment activities will
provide sample responses against which learners can assess their own learning.
 Teacher-Graded Lesson Activities: These lesson activities will require teacher assessment, employing AP-style
objective rubrics. Students will be provided with the rubrics for each assignment.
 Unit-Level Posttests: Each unit will have a multiple-choice assessment to confirm that all the material within the unit
has been retained and can be applied in a larger context than a single-lesson format.
 Unit-Level Culminating Activities: Learners will have the chance to apply their knowledge of the concepts that cut
across the lessons within a unit. Most of the units will include this teacher-graded activity for evaluation of higher order
thinking skills.
 End-of-Semester Tests: At the end of each of the two semesters, learners will take a multiple-choice test to assess
mastery of lesson concepts and provide additional practice for a long-form exam like the AP exam.
AP Biology Course Outline
This course will be structured in two 18-week semesters with the following units:
Semester A
Exploring Life
Diversity of life
Cells/Cell Cycle
Semester B
Animal Structure & function (Part I)
Enzymes/Metabolism/Cellular Respiration
Animal Structure & Function (Part II)
Plant Evolution/Plant Structure & Function
Molecular Genetics/Biotechnology
Animal Structure & Function
Animal Development
This course will employ the following textbook as a resource for deep research and learning:
Campbell, N.A, and Reece, J.B. Biology AP Edition. San Francisco: Pearson Education, Inc., 2011. Online lessons will provide
instructional content that approximates the classroom experience for this content, but will not be comprehensive on its own. In
addition, in some instances, published articles available online may be referenced for instructional purposes.
Schedule and Topics
The units will proceed through two semesters following the schedule below.
- Exploring Life
- The Chemical Context of Life
- Water & the Fitness of the Environment
- Carbon & the Molecular Diversity of Life
- The structure & Function of Large
- A Tour of the Cell
- Membrane Structure & Function
- An Introduction to Metabolism
- Cellular Respiration: Harvesting Chemical
- Photosynthesis
- Cell Communication
- The Cell Cycle
Pfenning article
Greene, and Gordon
Lab 1
Osmosis & Diffusion
Itoh, Takahashi,
Adachi, Noji,
Yasuda, Yoshida
and Kinosita article
Lab 2
Enzyme Catalysis &
Lab 5
Cell Respiration
- Meiosis and Sexual Life Cycles
- Mendel and the Gene Idea
- The Chromosomal Basis of Inheritance
- The Molecular Basis of Inheritance
- From Gene to Protein
- Regulation of Gene Expression
- Virus
- Biotechnology
- Genomes & Their Evolution
- Decent with Modification
Chapter 23
- The Evolution of Populations
- The Origin of Species
- The History of Life on Earth
- Phylogeny and the Tree of Life
- Prokaryotes
- Protists
- Plant diversity I: How Plants colonized Land
- Plant Diversity II: The Evolution of Seed Plants
- Fungi
- An Introduction to Animal Diversity
Chapter 33
- Invertebrates
Chapter 34
- Vertebrates
- Plant Structure Growth & Development
- Resource Acquisition & Transport in Vascular
- Soil & Plant Nutrition
- Angiosperm Reproduction & Biotechnology
- Plant Responses to Internal & External Signals
Lab 3
Mitosis & Meiosis
Lab 7
Genetics of Drosophila
Meselson and Stahl
Lab 6a
Transformation of
Lab 6b
DNA Fingerprinting
Meselson and Stahl
Lab 8
Population Genetics and
Risa D. Sargent
Lab 9
Stinson, Campbell,
Powell, Callaway et
al. article
- Basic Principles of Animal Form and Function
- Animal Nutrition
- Circulation and Gas Exchange
- The Immune System
- Osmoregulation & Excretion
Hormones and the Endocrine System
- Animal Reproduction
- Animal Development
- Neurons, Synapses, & Signaling
- Nervous Systems
Chapter 50
- Sensory & Motor Mechanisms
- Animal Behavior
- An Introduction to Ecology and the Biosphere
- Population Ecology
- Community Ecology
- Ecosystems
- Conservation Biology & Restoration Ecology
Lab 10
Blood Physiology &
Circulatory System
Smithells et al.
Westemeier article
Lab 11
Animal Behavior
Lab 12
Dissolved Oxygen and
Primary Productivity
Advanced Biology - Semester A
Exploring Life (4 Days)
What Is Biology?
Understand how human curiosity is channeled by the scientific method into purposeful inquiry about living things
List and explain the eight themes of the AP Biology course
Explain the interdisciplinary nature of biology
Describe and explain how scientists use the scientific method to add new knowledge to biology
Apply the scientific method to scientific problems and laboratory investigations
Use appropriate math skills to analyze data
Conducting Biology Research
Use lab equipment safely and properly to carry out a biology experiment
Students will be able to recognize by name and use appropriately and safely equipment such as Bunsen burners, graduated
cylinders, microscopes, balances, etc.
Communicating Your Results
Communicate results of scientific investigations
Students will be able to organize data into charts and graphs and do necessary calculations
Evolution (12 Days)
Darwin and Natural Selection
Explain how Darwin developed his theory of natural selection
List the contributions of earlier scientists that Darwin needed to develop his concept of natural selection
List and explain Darwin’s five main points to natural selection
Apply Darwin's theory to an example of evolution through natural selection (ex finches)
Compare and contrast the evolutionary theories of Darwin and Lamarck
Gene Frequencies
Show how changes in gene frequencies can lead to evolutionary changes Determine the frequency of a dominant and recessive
allele observed in a population
Calculate the expected frequency of the homozygous dominant, heterozygous dominant, and heterozygous recessive members
of a population for an observable trait
List the conditions necessary for the Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium to show that a population will not evolve
Use the Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium to show the effects of various selective pressures upon gene frequency in a population
Relate these selection pressures to evolution in a population
Define microevolution and understand how it results from changes in gene frequencies in a living population
Explain how changes in gene frequencies in a population lead to microevolution
Describe five factors that change gene frequencies in a population and result in microevolution
Adaptive Evolution
Explain how adaptive evolution can result from the genetic variation that arises in living populations
Describe how genetic variation occurs and is maintained in a population
Describe three patterns of natural selection and the condition that causes each to occur in nature
Explain the most common mechanisms in evolution that lead to speciation
Define a species biologically
Show how allopatric and sympatric mechanisms lead to speciation
Compare and contrast adaptive radiation and convergent evolution
Describe the concept of punctuated equilibrium and how it contributes to macroevolution
Describe the theory of punctuated equilibrium and how it explains macroevolution
Compare and contrast punctuated equilibrium and gradualism
Describe how biologists trace the phylogeny of organisms by obtaining evidence of evolution using a variety of methods
Describe four common methods of study that evolutionary biologists use to trace phylogeny (fossils, anatomy, embryos, and
Explain how each method ultimately relates to changes in gene frequencies and speciation
Explain a cladistic analysis used in constructing a phylogenic tree
Describe how the geological time scale provides evidence of evolution and mass extinctions
The Tree of Life
Explain our modern system of biological taxonomy and how it is hierarchical in nature
Describe binomial nomenclature and apply it to living things
List in descending order the major taxonomic levels employed by biologists today
Diversity of Life (14 Days)
Evolution of Life on Earth
Outline the history of the evolution of life on Earth
Describe the formation of the Earth and its original primordial condition
Describe the chemical evolution which occurred to create the molecules of life in the "primordial soup” and experiments to
support this theory
Explain the heterotroph hypothesis and describe the nature of the earliest protocells
Explain how natural selection led to the development of primitive photosynthesis
Describe how the "oxygen revolution" transformed Earth and paved the way for advanced life
Phylogeny and Evolution
Describe how taxonomy reflects evolutionary relationships
Relate the branching pattern of phylogenetic trees to the taxonomic hierarchy
Relate a cladistic analysis of a species evolution to branch points on its phylogenetic tree
Demonstrate knowledge of the biology, diversity, evolution, and importance of the prokaryotes
Differentiate between archeabacteria and eubacteria, including their evolutionary history
Describe diversity within kingdom monera
Describe the modes of nutrition and reproduction within the prokaryotes
Discuss the prevalence and importance of the prokaryotes to all other life
Demonstrate knowledge of the biology, diversity, evolution, and importance of the protozoa within kingdom Protista
Describe the diversity of the protozoans
Survey the biology of a representative of each major group of protozoans
Demonstrate knowledge of the biology, diversity, evolution, and importance of the major algae types within kingdom Protista
Describe the diversity of the algae
Discuss the origin of multicellularity in algae
Describe evidence for the evolutionary link between green algae and land plants
Demonstrate knowledge of the biology, diversity, evolution, and importance of the Fungi
Describe the basic structures of a fungal organism
Illustrate diversity in the fungi by outlining the characteristics of the major fungal divisions
Discuss both positive and negative roles of fungi in nature
Lower Invertebrate Animals
Demonstrate knowledge of the biology, diversity, evolution, and importance of the lower invertebrates
Draw a phylogenetic tree of animal kingdom evolution
List and explain the characteristics used to classify animals
Discuss the linear evolutionary nature of the lower invertebrates
Compare the anatomy of the parazoa, radiata, acoelomates, and pseudocoelomates showing increasing complexity
Higher Invertebrate Animals
Demonstrate knowledge of the biology, diversity, evolution, and importance of the higher invertebrates
Explain why the higher invertebrates have evolved into two distinct pathways: protostomes (annelids, mollusks, and arthropods)
and deuterostomes (echinoderms)
Compare the evolution of major body systems in the higher invertebrates
Illustrate the diversity seen within these animal phyla
Discuss reasons for the overwhelming dominance of the arthropods on Earth
Demonstrate knowledge of the biology, diversity, evolution, and importance of the chordates
Explain why phylum chordata are on the deuterostome line of animal evolution
List the identifying characteristics of a chordate
Describe the characteristics that identify chordates in each of the three chordate subphyla
Describe the evolution of the vertebrates to land
Systemically, compare the seven classes of vertebrates
Illustrate the diversity seen among the vertebrates
Discuss the importance of the vertebrates to life on Earth
Ecology (16 Days)
Energy in an Ecosystem
Describe how energy flows through an ecosystem
Describe the basic trophic relationships common in any ecosystem
Explain how food chains and webs can be used to show trophic relationships in ecosystems
Describe the efficiency of energy transfer between trophic levels
Explain how measuring ecosystem productivity shows an ecosystem’s efficiency at transferring energy between trophic levels
Show how productivity and efficiency can be illustrated in biomass and productivity pyramids
Ecosystem Productivity
Describe how productivity can be measured and used to measure the efficiency of an ecosystem
Explain how measuring ecosystem productivity shows an ecosystem’s efficiency at transferring energy between trophic levels
Measure the productivity of an aquatic ecosystem
Cycles of an Ecosystem
Describe the major biogeochemical cycles of an ecosystem
Show how the paired reactions of photosynthesis and respiration continuously cycle carbon between the atmosphere and
Describe the nitrogen cycle and the role of nitrifying bacteria
Describe the phosphate cycle and the role of decomposing bacteria
Describe the water cycle and factors that affect it
Balance in Nature
Describe how population numbers and distribution are kept in balance in nature
Define a niche and the principle of exclusion
Explain the roles that natality, mortality, immigration, and emigration have on populations
Describe three patterns of individual spacing in a population and factors that determine each pattern
Describe the two common growth patterns observed in populations (S-curve and J-curve) and factors that produce each
Relate life history strategies of species (R and K strategists) to growth patterns
Explain how the concepts of biotic potential and environmental resistance relate to population dynamics.
Explain the effects that density-dependent or density-independent limiting factors have upon growth curves
Community Structure
Discuss factors that determine community structure in ecosystems
Describe several types of interspecies interactions and evaluate their effect on both species (symbiosis, predation, competition)
Describe how intra-species interactions affect community structure (intra-species competition, herds, societies)
Describe how natural and human-made disturbances can alter community structures
Ecological Succession
Describe how ecological succession can change environments and lead to the formation of new biomes
Describe a succession sequence that would begin at bare rock and climax at a deciduous hardwood forest
List five conclusions about the nature of community changes during the course of ecological succession
Outline a general description of the world’s major land and water biomes and state what environmental conditions are necessary
to result in them
Ecological Issues and Crises
Discuss the major global ecological issues facing humanity today
Students will be prepared to use information learned from this course to explain and discuss regional and global ecological issues,
including the following topics:
o The causes and potential effects of global climate change
o The causes, types, and effects of pollution on ecosystems
o The role human population growth has on global ecology
o The effects of loss of biodiversity in habitats
Biochemistry (13 Days)
The Chemical Nature of Biology
Understand enough about basic chemistry to better understand biology
Explain the following basic concepts of chemistry: structure of an atom, isotopes, ions, ionic and covalent bonds, solutions,
suspensions, and colloids
Water: An Essential for Life
Describe the properties of water that make it an essential molecule of life
Describe the chemical structure of water
List and explain the properties of water significant to life
Acids, Bases, and Buffers
Explain the nature and role of acids, bases, and buffers in biology
Distinguish chemically between acids, bases, and salts
Explain differences in pH values
Describe what aqueous buffers do
Carbon: A Central Building Block
Explain the unique chemistry of the carbon atom and why it is central to building organic compounds
Explain the tetravalent nature of carbon and its tendency to form covalent bonds
Describe the formation of double and triple carbon bonds
Describe the formation and naming of hydrocarbon isomers
Building the Molecules of Life
Identify and explain the six basic functional groups used to build the molecules of life
Recognize the six basic functional groups (hydroxyl, carboxyl, carbonyl, amino, sulfhydryl, phosphate) and describe their
Explain the resonant nature of some of these groups
Polymers: Combinations of Monomers
Explore and explain how polymers are made up of monomers and why that is important in biology
Understand that most biomolecules are polymers of smaller molecules called monomers
Understand the energy input/output (exergonic and endergonic reactions) of polymers
Understand the type of bonds formed (covalent, but one type is relatively weak like starch as it needs to be easily broken, and
some are very strong like cellulose that form structures)
Carbohydrates, Lipids, Proteins, and Nucleic Acids
Describe how the four major groups of biological molecules function in natural systems
Recognize by name the three major groups of carbohydrates: monosaccharides, disaccharides, and polysaccharides
Recognize by name the three major groups of lipids: trigylcerides, phospholipids, and steroids
Recognize the basic structure of an amino acid and how it forms peptide bonds
Describe the four levels of protein structure and several environmental factors that can cause proteins to become denatured
Recognize the structure and types of nucleotide and describe how they bond together to form polynucleotides
State the common functions of each of the molecules learned in this section
Cells/Cell Cycle (14 Days)
Overview of Cell Structures and Functions
Describe the general structure of cells, the structures inside of cells and how biologists study the way these structures function in
Describe techniques used by biologists to study cell ultrastructures and functions
Identify and describe the structure and function of all the eukaryotic cell organelles
Compare plant and animal cell ultrastucture
Cells: Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic
Compare prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells.
Identify the structures and size of a prokaryotic cell
Compare it to a eukaryotic cell
Osmosis, Diffusion, and Cellular Transport
Explain how materials are transported in and out of cells
Describe the fluid-mosaic model for cell membrane
Explain how materials cross cell membrane by simple diffusion
Describe the factors controlling osmosis and diffusion in cells
Predict the rate and direction of osmosis in and out of cells
Relate the terms hypotonic, hypertonic, and isotonic to homeostasis in cells
Describe ways in which materials are actively transported across cell membranes
The Cell Cycle
Describe the cell cycle and how it functions
List the two primary purposes of somatic cell division
Describe what occurs in each phase of the cell cycle
Recognize, describe, and identify by name each phase of somatic cell division
Describe the similarities and differences between plant and animal somatic cell division
Regulating the Cell Cycle
Explain how the cell cycle is controlled and regulated in a cell
Explain the internal and external control systems that regulate the rate of cell division
Relate loss of regulatory control in the cell cycle to the onset of cancer
Animal Structure & Function (Part I) 15 Days
Animal Bodies
Describe how an animal body is organized as represented by a mammal
Describe the structural and functional differences among tissues within the four basic tissue groups: epithelial, connective,
muscular, and nervous.
Identify the major organ systems of a mammal and their basic functions
The Excretory System
Describe the structures and functions of the excretory system in a mammal
Identify the waste products of metabolism that must be excreted and their source
Describe the various mechanisms and controls for body temperature regulation
Identify all the excretory organs of the body and what they excrete
Identify all the organs of the urinary system and their functions
Explain how metabolic wastes are removed and concentrated by the urinary system
Explain how urine production is controlled and regulated
The Nervous System
Describe the structures and functions of the nervous system in a mammal
Describe the structure of a typical neuron
Explain how an impulse is transmitted along a nonmyelinated and myelinated axon
Explain how a nerve impulse is transmitted across a neural and a muscle synapse
Identify some common neurotransmitters and state their function
Describe the organization of the vertebrate nervous system
Explain the reflex arc and its role in vertebrates
Explain how the two divisions of the autonomic nervous system work to maintain homeostasis of vertebrate internal organs
Discuss the structures of the brain and their functions
Discuss the structure and function of the body’s major internal and external sense organs
Enzymes/Metabolism/Cellular Respiration (16 Days)
Transforming Energy
Recognize that energy transformation through metabolic pathways is a core process which defines life
Explain the difference between catabolism and anabolism
Discuss free energy (delta G) in relation to exergonic and endergonic reactions
Describe how the unique structure of ATP allows for the energy transformations metabolism requires
Explain the structure, function, and denaturation of enzymes
Explain how unique enzyme structure and function results from its primary, secondary, tertiary, and quaternary levels of
Discuss the "induced fit" hypothesis in enzyme action
Energy in Cells
Discuss in detail how cells use organic compounds as their energy source
Discuss the major phases and reactions of cellular respiration showing net energy yields
Compare fermentation and anaerobic respiration to cellular respiration
Explain how ATP is generated in the mitochondrial membrane by chemiosmosis
Animal Structure Function (Part II) – 16 Days
The Digestive System
Describe the structures and functions of the digestive system in a mammal
Identify all the organs (and accessory organs) of the digestive system and their function in digestion
Describe how food is mechanically and chemically digested, including all digestive enzymes, the substrate they act upon,
products produced, and required pH
Describe the hormonal control of the digestive system
Explain where and how digested molecules are absorbed from the digestive system into the blood stream
Explain the role of symbiotic bacteria in digestion
Circulatory and Respiratory Systems
Describe the structures and functions of the circulatory and respiratory systems in a mammal
Identify all the organs of the circulatory system and their function
Identify all the different functions of the circulatory system
Differentiate between the structure and function of arteries, veins, and capillaries
Distinguish between systemic and pulmonary circulation
Discuss the roles of blood pressure, velocity, and surface area upon metabolic exchange
Describe the structure of a mammalian heart and how blood circulates through it
Explain how an intrinsic heartbeat occurs and how nervous and hormonal factors change the heartbeat rate
Identify by structure and function the cellular and plasma components of blood
Explain human blood types for the ABO and Rh systems
Explain the anatomical modifications in a fetus's circulatory system
Identify all the organs of the respiratory system and their function
Describe how breathing occurs and is controlled in a mammal
Discuss how oxygen and carbon dioxide are transported in blood
Explain how internal and external respiration occur and how they are controlled
The Skeletal and Muscular Systems
Describe the structures and functions of the skeletal and muscular systems in a mammal
Describe the structures seen in a long bone cut longitudinally and the function of each structure
Differentiate between the axial and appendicular skeleton
Describe the structure of a Haversian system in compact bone
Describe how bones grow in length and width
Name and describe the common types of joints in the vertebrate skeleton
Discuss the role of calcium storage and release from bones
Describe the structure and function of the three different types of muscle cells
Explain the physiology of skeletal muscle contraction
Explain the role of calcium ions in muscle contraction
The Immune System
Describe the structures and functions of the immune system in a mammal
Describe the series of reactions that occur at the site of a wound.
Describe various non-specific external barriers to potential pathogens of the human body
Describe the non-specific internal defenses of the body (white blood cells and fever) and their role in the inflammation reaction
Describe the specific internal defenses of the body including humoral and cell mediated responses
Explain how long-term immunity is established and maintained (clonal selection)
Photosynthesis (3 Days)
Discuss photosynthesis in detail as the process through which plants convert light energy into chemical energy in a stable form
for all life to use
Discuss the major phases and reactions of photosynthesis showing how glucose is generated
Explain the chemical relationship between respiration and photosynthesis
Unit 10 - Plant Evolution/ Plant Structure & Function (16 Days)
Describe the organization of an angiosperm
Identify and give the function of the seven major plant tissues (collenchyma, sclerenchyma, parenchyma, xylem, phloem,
meristems, and epidermis)
Identify and give the function of the four major organs (leaves, stems, roots, and flowers)
Describe the structure and function of leaves
In a drawing of a leaf cross section, identify each tissue present and give its role in photosynthesis
Distinguish between monocot and dicot leaves
Describe the diversity in leaf shape, arrangement, and venation patterns
Describe the structure and functions of stems
Identify the major functions of stems (conduction, support, storage, sometimes photosynthesis)
Distinguish between monocot and dicot stem cross sections
Growth in Stems
Describe the process of primary and secondary growth in stems
In a longitudinal section through the apical bud, identify the mitotic zone, the zone of elongation, and the zone of differentiation
and describe how each are involved in the primary growth of a stem
In a cross section through a herbacious dicot stem, identify each tissue in the vascular bundle and relate that tissues to a stem’s
secondary growth
Relate secondary growth in a vascular bundle to the annual growth in a woody stem
Describe the structure and functions of roots
List the functions of roots in plants
From root cross section diagrams, identify a monocot from a dicot
Identify the different types of roots and their function
Transportation in Plants
Describe how materials necessary for plant metabolism are absorbed and transported by plants
Describe how plants are able to selectively control root-hair absorption by the Carparian Strip
Describe mechanisms and energy sources that plants use to transport water in xylem from foots to leaves
Discuss how the rate of water transport is controlled by stomata in leaves through transpiration
Investigate and discuss factors that affect the rate of transpiration in plants
Describe how the products of photosynthesis produced in leaves are transported in phloem to non-photosynthetic parts of the
Compare the structure and tissues of a monocot and dicot root cross section and relate them to primary and secondary root growth
Plant Reproduction
Describe sexual and asexual methods of plant reproduction
Describe the structure of a flower and discuss how it is adapted for reproduction on land
Describe the double fertilization that occurs after pollination
Explain how a seed develops and how it is adapted for reproduction on land
Discuss fruit formation in a plant and methods of seed distribution in plants
Describe asexual methods of reproduction in plants
Plants in their Environment
Describe hormonal and other behavioral responses of plants to their environment
List and describe the effects of the following plant hormones: auxin, gibberelins, cytokinins, ethylene
Describe plant responses of phototropism and geotropism
Describe how plants are able to determine seasons and length of day
Moss and Other Bryophytes
Demonstrate knowledge of the biology, diversity, evolution, and importance of the nonvascular plants
Discuss alternation of generations as seen in the bryophytes
Discuss the evolutionary history of plants moving from water to land
Describe the adaptive problems that plants faced moving onto land
Show how bryophytes are partially but not completely adapted to life on land
Vascular Plants - Demonstrate knowledge of the biology, diversity, evolution, and importance of vascular plants
Discuss the importance of the evolution of vascular tissues in land plants
Discuss how ferns and horsetails improved upon bryophyte biology but are not still fully land adapted plants
Describe the evolution of the seed and pollen grain as land adaptations
Describe how the gymnosperms and angiosperms have completed the evolution of plants to land
Discuss the importance of vascular plants to life
Meiosis/Genetics/Heredity (12 Days)
Sexual Reproduction - Describe how sexual reproduction contributes to genetic diversity
Compare and contrast sexual and asexual reproduction
Describe how chromosomes assort into sex cells during meiosis and compare it to mitosis
Show how the recombination of chromosome pairs during fertilization results in an offspring with different genetic makeup than
either parent
Meiosis in Life Cycles
Explain the process and role of meiosis in sexual life cycles.
Outline the steps of meiosis during gametogenesis.
Describe the pattern of assortment of chromosomes during meiosis into sex cells.
Differentiate between spermatogenesis and oogenesis.
Identify the sources of genetic diversity produced by meiosis.
Mendelian Genetics
Mendelian Genetics
Explain and solve problems involving basic Mendelian genetics
Show how Mendel's experiments led him to develop his four laws of inheritance
List and explain Mendel's Laws of Inheritance
Use probability laws to solve genetics problems
Solve mono and dihybrid genetic problems using Punnett squares
Gene-Based Inheritance
Explain and solve problems involving gene-based inheritance
Describe six patterns of inheritance at the gene level (incomplete and co-dominance, multiple alleles, pleiotropy, epeistasis, and
polygenic inheritance) discovered since Mendel
Chromosomal Inheritance - Describe experiments that led to the discovery of, and solve problems related to, chromosomal
Distinguish between gene based inheritance and chromosome based inheritance
Show how geneticists use recombinant frequencies to construct gene maps
Explain how sex is determined genetically
Show how each of the following change Mendel's expected ratios in a genetic cross: crossing over, sex-linkage, non-disjunction,
chromosomal mutations
Molecular Genetics/Biotechnology (16 Days)
Overview of DNA
Describe DNA, its structure, and how it functions, including replication and repair
Describe in detail the anti-parallel structure of DNA
Describe the replication of DNA
List and explain the role of enzymes in DNA replication
Describe how DNA is proof-read and repaired
DNA and Genes
Explain what a gene is and how it functions
Describe RNA transcription
Explain the similarities and differences between the three types of RNA
Describe how a protein is translated, from initiation to termination
Mutations of Cells
Explain the nature and role of mutations in altering protein structure.
Explain how insertion, deletion, and substitution mutations can alter the structure of a translated protein.
Describe the effects mutations may have upon cells.
List common environmental factors that cause mutations.
Genetic Control
Describe how genetic control in prokaryotes occurs
Explain how protein synthesis is controlled in prokaryotic cells by both inducible and repressible operons
Explain the role of gene regulation upon cellular differentiation
Gene Splicing
Describe the organization and control of genes on eukaryotic chromosomes and experimentally isolate a gene (or DNA fragment),
inserting it into a foreign host to have it be active
Describe the levels of structure of a eukaryotic chromosome
Suggest several uses for non-coding DNA
Compare protein synthesis in eukaryotic cells to prokaryotic cells
Discuss how eukaryotic gene control differs from prokaryotic gene control
Experimentally, insert a foreign gene (plasmid) into bacteria and determine the efficiency of transformation of the bacterial
Perform a gel electrophoresis and analyze band structure to determine the size of unknown, isolated DNA fragments
Genetic Engineering
Describe common methods of genetic engineering and some of their applications
Describe natural methods of recombining DNA that viruses and bacteria do
o Describe the basic structure of a virus and its life cycle to show how it can change (mutate) a gene in another organism
o Show how bacterial plasmids can enter cells and alter host gene action
Explain methods used to artificially modify an organism’s genetics by inserting a foreign gene
Explain the importance of restriction enzymes in genetic engineering
Explain some common types of genetic engineering technology currently in use
Discuss both useful and potentially harmful aspects of genetic engineering technology
Animal Structure & Function (4 Days)
Animal Reproduction
Describe the structures and functions of the reproductive system in a mammal
Identify and give the function(s) of all structures composing the male and female reproductive system
Explain the hormonal control and feedback systems of the male reproductive system
Explain the interactions of the pituitary gland, ovaries, and uterus in initiating and regulating the menstrual cycle
Describe the hormone-initiated sequence of events that occur in a woman’s body after fertilization occurs
Explain the relationship between maternal and fetal blood streams during pregnancy and how metabolic exchange between
mother and fetus occur
Explain the hormonal controls in the mother that initiate and complete the birth process
The Endocrine System
Describe the structures and functions of the endocrine system in a mammal
Differentiate between the structure and functions of endocrine and exocrine glands
Explain what a hormone is and what it does
Describe the two different classes of hormones and how each causes a target cell to react
Identify and discuss how the glands of the brain regulate and control all other glands
Identify the location and hormones produced by all the major glands of the body
For all major hormones of the body, identify their target organ(s) and effect
Show how blood glucose levels are maintained at homeostatic levels by hormone action
Discuss how prostaglandins are unique hormones that target both organs of self and organs in other people
Animal Development (2 Days)
Stages of Development
Describe the stages occurring during animal development
Describe the mechanism that a sperm uses to enter an egg
Describe the changes in the zygote as it undergoes embryological development through early cleavage, blastula, gastrula, and
AP Biology Review (7 Days)