Unit 4: Mechanisms of Evolution

Time line: 2 1/2 Weeks.

Unit Objectives:

1. Analyze the conditions of the earth and its atmosphere at its earliest beginnings.

2. Develop a flow chart of life from its origins to the present day.

3. Describe the characteristics of early life on earth.

4. Develop a working understanding of pre-Darwinian views of evolution.

5. Critique Darwin's theory of evolution.

6. Analyze the modern concepts of evolution.

7. Develop an understanding of the evidence for evolution.

8. Develop a working knowledge of population genetics. Be able to apply the Hardy-Weinberg Theorem to specific population problems.

9. Defend adaptive evolution. Be able to discuss the reasons under lying natural selection.

10. Explain the problems related to defining a species.

11. Define the reproductive barriers that affect speciation.

12. Define and discuss the biogeographic barriers affecting speciation.


Teacher/Student Activities:

1. Teacher prepared worksheet on the development of life. Independent practice. Students will fill out a time line of life's development. Objectives: 1, 2,and 3.

2. Outside reading: Using the Further Reading section of Biology Fourth Edition, Campbell, Page 348. Assign readings authored by Darwin, Aristotle, and Lamark. Objectives: 4,5,and 6.

3. Compare and contrast worksheet on the various theories of evolution. Objectives; 4, 5,and 6.

4. Cooperative group discussion: Topic the Evidence for Evolution. Each group will have 15 minutes to present evidence for biological evolution. Objective 7.

5. A P Lab # 8 Population Genetics and Evolution. Objective: 8.

6. Teacher constructed worksheet: Problems using the Hardy-Weinberg Theorem. Independent practice. Objective: 8. worksheets

7. Research report: Topics: a). Discuss the species problem based on reproductive barriers, b). Discuss the species problem based on biogeographical barriers. Three to Five paged, double spaced report with references. Objectives: 10,11,and 12.

8. Compare and contrast gradualism and punctuated equilibrium.


1. Teacher Labs are guided practice and will not be counted in the grading process.

2. Pop quizzes are formative assessments and will not be counted in the grading process.

3. Major Test: Summative and will follow the A P Exam format.

4. AP Labs are summative and will be counted in the grading process.