AP Biology: Ch 1 A View of Life – Mader Essay

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adaptation
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Species’s modification in structure, function, or behavior that makes a species more suitable to its environment.
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animal
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Multicelluar, heterotrophic eukaryote that undergoes development to achieve its final form. In general, mobile organisms, characterized by the presence of muscular and nervous tissue.
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binomial nomenclature
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scientific name of an organism, the first part of which designates the genus and the second part of which designates the specific epithet
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biodiversity
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total number of species, the variability of their genes, and the communities in which they live
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biology
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the branch of science that is concerned with the study of life and living organsms
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biosphere
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zone of air, land, and water at the surface of the Earth in which living organisms are found
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cell
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the smallest unit of life that displays all the properties of life; composed of cytoplasm surrounded by a plasma membrane
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class
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one of the categories, or taxa, used by taxonomists to group species; the taxon above the order level
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community
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assemblage of species interacting with one another within the same environment
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conclusion
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sample that goes through all the steps of an experiment but does not contain the variable being tested; a standard against which the results of an experiment are checked
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control
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sample that goes through all the steps of an experiment but does not contain the variable being tested; a standard against which the results of an experiment are checked
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data
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facts or information collected through observation and/or experimentation
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deductive reasoning
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the use of general principles to predict specific outcomes; often uses “if … then” statements
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domain
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largest of the categories, or taxa, used by taxonomists to group species; the three domains are Archaea, Bacteria, and Eukarya
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domain Archaea
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one of the three domains of life; contains prokaryotic cells that often live in extreme habitats and have unique genetic, biochemical, and physiological characteristics; its members are sometimes referred to as archaea
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domain Bacteria
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one of the three domains of life; contains prokaryotic cells that differ from archaea because they have their own unique genetic, biochemical, and physiological characteristics
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domain Euakrya
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one of the three domains of life, consisting of organisms with eukaryotic cells; includes protists, fungi, plants, and animals
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ecosystem
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biological community together with the associated abiotic environment; characterized by a flow of energy and a cycling of inorganic nutrients
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emergent property
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a function or trait that appears as biological complexity increases
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energy
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capacity to do work and bring about change; occurs in a variety of forms
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eukaryote
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type of cell that has a membrane-bounded nucleus and membranous organelles; found in organisms within the domain Eukarya
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evolution
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genetic change in a species over time resulting in the development of genetic and phenotypic differences that are the basis of natural selection; descent of organisms from a common ancestor
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experiment
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a test of a hypothesis that examines the influence of a single variable; often involves both control and test groups
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experimental design
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methodology by which an experiment will seek to support the hypothesis
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experimental variable
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a variable in an experiment that is changed by the experimenter
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extinction
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disappearance of a species from all parts of its geographical range
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family
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(biology) a taxonomic group containing one or more genera
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fungi
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Kingdom composed of heterotrophs; many obtain energy and nutrients from dead organic matter
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gene
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sequence of DNA that codes for a protein and thus determines a trait
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genus
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(biology) taxonomic group containing one or more species
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homeostasis
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process by which organisms maintain a relatively stable internal environment
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hypothesis
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A testable prediction, often implied by a theory
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inductive reasoning
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A type of logic in which generalizations are based on a large number of specific observations.
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kingdom
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taxonomic category, the second broadest after domain, made up of many phyla
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law
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a descriptive statement or equation that reliably predicts events under certain conditions
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metabolism
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the combination of chemical reactions through which an organism builds up or breaks down materials
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model
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a representation of an object or event (usually on a smaller scale)
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multicellular
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organisms composed of many cells
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natural selection
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organisms better adapted to their environment tend to survive and produce more offspring
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observation
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the action or process of observing something or someone carefully or in order to gain information.
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order
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taxonomic group containing one or more families
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organism
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An individual living thing
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phenomenon
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a fact or event which can be observed and/or documented
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photosynthesis
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process by which plants use the sun’s energy to convert water and carbon dioxide into sugars
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phylum
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taxonomic group of related classes
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plant
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multicellular eukaryote that produces its own food through photosynthesis
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population
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group of individuals of the same species that live in the same area
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prediction
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a statement of what a scientist expects to observe if a hypothesis is true
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principle
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a fundamental truth or proposition that serves as the foundation for a system of belief or behavior
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prokaryote
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a unicellular organism having cells lacking membrane-bound nuclei
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protist
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free-living or colonial organisms with diverse nutritional and reproductive modes
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reproduce
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the production of offspring that are similar to the parents
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responding variable
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the variable that changes in response to the manipulated variable
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scientific method
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a series of steps that scientists use to answer questions and solve problems
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scientific theory
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explanation for a large number of findings in the natural world
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species
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taxonomic group whose members can interbreed
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standard deviation
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a measure of variability that describes an average distance of every score from the mean
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systematics
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study of the diversity of life and the evolutionary relationships between organisms
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taxonomy
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the science of describing, naming, and classifying organisms
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unicellular
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having or consisting of a single cell

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