Biology 31 Midterm Exam I

Biology 31 – Midterm I Study Guide
This is NOT an exhaustive list of all potential topics or questions, just a guide to
many of the more important concepts and terms we have covered. I will pull
questions and terms preferentially from our lectures and activities.
1. Define environmental science.
2. What are the steps of the scientific method?
3. What were four major waves in the history of environmentalism?
4. What important role did Carson’s Silent Spring play modern environmentalism?
5. Why do economics play such a large role in environmental concerns?
6. What is matter and energy?
7. Explain the phrase “energy cannot be created or destroyed”.
8. What are organic compounds?
9. What is the equations for photosynthesis and respiration?
10. What is the “10% rule?”
11. What are the different levels of producers and consumers?
12. Why do we pay attention to Carbon moving around a food web? What else does
that tell us?
13. What is a biogeochemical cycle?
14. Outline the Nitrogen Cycle. What is the ultimate source of Nitrogen, and which
organisms mediate/regulate the cycle? What is nitrogen “fixing?”
15. Define ecology and the environment?
16. Explain what is a biological adaptation.
17. Explain the main ideas behind Natural Selection.
18. What is a species?
19. What are biomes and how are they defined?
20. List and explain the different types of species interactions.
21. Would you consider yourself to be a Neo-Malthusian or a Neo-Marxist? Explain
your answer.
22. List the main categories (levels) of the taxonomic system, from widest to most
specific, and then list your taxonomy for each level.
23. An organisms distribution and abundance is determined by its interactions with
the environment. Explain this statement and give 3 examples of this (be sure to
clearly identify the organisms, the interaction, and how the interaction affects
either distribution or abundance).
24. Define Carrying Capacity and then (using the image below), describe where you
think the human population is currently along this line. Be sure to explain your
25. Explain how humans influence the nitrogen cycle.
26. Know how to read age structure histograms, like on the population growth
27. What is a niche and how does it relate to competition?
28. What are the three types of biodiversity and what are their main threats?
29. Describe the biological species concept and highlight the main problem with its
use in real life.
30. Explain the graph below in terms of which environmental issues are addressed
during an individual’s tenure in public office.
Likelihood something will happen
during tenure in public office.