BIO 170 - First Exam - Fall 2016

Multiple Choice.

Place the letter of the choice that best answers the question on the line to the left.
Two Points Each. NOTE: “e” answers are never the correct answer.

_______ 1. A hypothesis needs to be _______¬ to be useful

                a. Obviously logical         b. Predictive        c. Conclusive         d. Widely-accepted
                                                    e. A real money-maker

_______ 2. Results that tell you that your basic ideas are probably wrong are covered by which term?

                a. Null results         b. Negative hypothesis        c. Null hypothesis         d. Blank hypothesis
                                        d. White mice talking about what an idiot you are

_______ 3. Which best describes the most common form of academic peer review?

                a. You check other scientists' work while designing an experiment
                b. You have co-workers in the lab check your results as you record them
                c. Each step in designing your experiment is checked by your supervisor
                d. You write up your results and have other scientists check them
                e. The other scientists try to get you to put Jell-O down your pants

_______ 4. The term niche refers to a particular

                a. Location in an ecosystem         b. Microenvironment        c. Role or job in an ecosystem
                d. Class of environment                 e. Word people use to make themselves sound educated

_______5. Malthus is famous for an essay that was sort of about immigration, but was as-written
                                about the effects of

                a. Inheritance of features         b. Overpopulation        c. Natural selection         d. Virus function
                                                e. Getting on all of the news shows

_______6. If two organisms belong to the same order, then they must

                a. Belong to the same class
                b. Belong to the same genus       
                c. Have the same "first name" using binomial nomenclature

                d. All of the above
                e. Marry each other, by Arkansas law

_______7. The part of an experiment that best makes sure that your results are trustworthy:

                a. Variable         b. Null hypothesis         c. Control         d. Working hypothesis
                                            e. The part when you get the paycheck

_______8. If alleles come in pairs, then the appearance of a dominant trait indicates

                a. At least one recessive allele         b. Two dominant alleles only        c. At least one dominant allele
                d. Two recessive alleles only       e. That the 50 Shades movies are more influential than we thought

_______9. A treatment which is like a real treatment but actually does nothing:

                a. Sham         b. Mimic         c. Copy control         d. Placebo
                            e. You mean "non-alcoholic beer" is scientific??

_______10. Sexual selection is a concept about

                a. Offspring genetics         b. Species defining        c. Evolution         d. Classification parameters
                                                                    e. Tinder profiles

_______11. Energy is gotten from sugar through the process of

                a. Respiration         b. Reproduction        c. Radioactivity         d. Photosynthesis
                                                e. Munching Cap'n Crunch

_______12. If the shared ancestor of the two groups of bats did not have wings, then wings are considered to be

                a. Non-ancestral         b. Cladistically limited        c. Non-preserved         d. Derived
                                                            e. Still a really cool feature

_______13. That worms and snakes have similar shapes is an example of

                a. HOX genes at work         b. Closely-shared ancestors        c. Convergent evolution
                d. Divergent evolution                    e. Nature’s total lack of imagination

_______14. What term applies to modification of DNA that doesn’t change the code?

                a. Metacode         b. Epigenetic         c. Extragenetic        d. Memetic
                                        e. The thing that’s only almost a thing

_______15. The idea that a researcher’s prejudices can affect their science relates to

                a. Reductionism         b. Regression to the mean        c. Deviationism         d. Postmodernism
                                            e. Why we should never ever trust scientists

_______16. “Ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny” connects

                a. Genes and features             b. Embryos and evolution            c. Development of critical features
                d. Enzymes and gene codes                    e. Way too many long confusing words

_______17. If a classification group mistakenly includes groups it should not:

                a. Polyphyletic         b. Mistaxonated        c. Multiclade         d. Unsubordinated
                                        e. You point and shout “Bad!” “Bad!” “Bad!”

_______18. Computer models may be criticized because

                a. Their results are too complex                                     b. Their calculations are oversimplified
                c. It’s too expensive to do the actual experiments            d. The math involved isn’t understood
                                                    e. It just helps them prepare to take over

Short Answer.

Pick NINE questions to answer in the spaces provided.

NOTE: if you answer MORE than nine, only the first nine will be corrected.
Four Points each. Partial credit is possible.

1. Briefly define reductionism.

2. What are two of LaMarck’s ideas that turn out to be not the way things work?


3. What term covers all of the energy-moving chemical reactions in an organism?

4. What, technically, is a gene?

5. What ultimately happens to most energy moving along a food chain?

6. For a low chromosome number, compared to a high one -


7. Why is it important to use large experimental groups? (What confounding factor gets less as the group gets bigger?)

8. In science, what is an artifact?

9. Explain how a double-blind study works. Cover both “levels of blindness.”

10. Give the terms that are used for the two patterns of evolutionary change.


11.  Put the following groups in order from the largest to the smallest: Class, Family, Genus, Kingdom, Order, Phylum, Species, Suborder, Superfamily.
1 2 3
4 5 6
7 8 9

12. What scientific role is served by uniformitarianism?

13. On his travels, Darwin found that the differences between mainland species and island species correlated with what two factors?


14. What is the current accepted definition of a species?

15. Briefly explain where fossil walkways come from – how do they get preserved as fossils?

16. What are two advantages of quantitative data over qualitative data?


Long Answer.

Select and answer completely any four of the following questions.

Note: if you answer more than four, only the first four will be corrected.
Seven Points Each. Partial credit is possible.
1.  Give two different rules that apply to each specifically in binomial nomenclature:

2.  Give a simple progression, according to Darwin’s Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection, from the beginning to the end here - (You can answer the question correctly and not have the same number of steps as the number of lines here).
The environment around a population changes
The population can now be considered a new species.

3. What are the basic steps between a virus being free in the environment to its “offspring” being released into the environment?
Host cell releases viruses...
Next host cell releases viruses.

4. For four different discoveries in the history of genetics, give the people or model organisms involved and the discovery.





5. Define these as technical biological terms -

6.  For the six basic Kingdoms of Life, give the name of the Kingdom and enough features to clearly set that Kingdom's members apart from those of the other five.







7.  Give the following for asexual reproduction -
compared to sexual
compared to sexual

Link to Answer Key


Answer as many or as few as you wish. You can't lose points on the rest of the exam by getting these wrong. Partial credit is possible.

Advanced science degrees tend to be significantly cheaper than such degrees in other areas. Why? Three Points.

What is the basic mechanism of most epigenetics? Three Points.

In what way do computers exhibit emergent properties? Three Points.

Biologically, what does gender mean? Three Points.

Where are you likely to find bacteria with generational times of tens or hundreds of years? Three Points.

Why did Pacific islanders appear to have extreme and bizarre sexual practices? Three Points.

Why was the idea of species extinction considered blasphemous by the Church? Three Points.

Why did the British Navy need folks like Darwin on their ships? Three Points.

What about Darwin’s famous book on evolution did the publisher really like?  Three Points.

Why was DNA considered too simple to be usable as a genetic code? Three Points.

Why are most genetic diseases recessive? Three Points.


BIO 170

Michael McDarby


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