Final Exam Study Guide

Final Exam Study Guide - Final Exam Study Guide Note: ALL...

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Final Exam Study Guide Note: ALL material covered in class (excluding student presentations) is fair game for the exam. This study guide should serve to focus your efforts, but is by no means a comprehensive list of the material that will be on the exam. Age of the earth 4.6 billion years How to calculate age of a rock/fossil based on radioactive decay Radioactive decay is the release of energy/particles An atom can decay into another element over time This decay happens at a constant rate and can be measured o Half life: the time it takes for an element to lose half of its radioactivity Steno’s laws Each layer corresponds to a time horizon o Principle of Original Horizontality: Layered strata are deposited horizontal/parallel to the earth’s surface o Principle of Superposition: In a sequence of layered rocks, the older rocks are on the bottom. o Principle of Lateral Continuity: Layers extend out for a considerable distance in all directions; layer is continuous. Definition of species Fundamental taxonomic unit/basic unit of biological classification No single definition o Biological Species Actually or potentially interbreeding individuals that can produce fertile offspring A new species exists when individuals can no longer interbreed Horse + donkey = mule o Morphological Species Group of individuals with shared morphologies (appearances) Appears distinct from other groups Could group all little black insects into one species / dozens of species out of dogs o Evolutionary Species Groups organisms based on shared evolutionary history. Two species might be able to interbreed, but considered different species Can be difficult to know the complete history of a species Process of fossilization Can occur in many different ways Permineralization is most common (but still extremely rare) process o Animals or plant dies in or near water
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o Water insulates the remains from decomposition o Sediments bury the exoskeleton o Times passes, sediments continue to bury remains o Lower layers become compacted by the weight of the layers on top o Over long period of time, pressure turns sediments into rock o Deeper layers compacted by the ones above o Fossils in deeper rock are older than those above o Relative age determined Older (deeper) Younger (surface) Cladograms Shows how organisms are related based on shared, derived characteristics May include extinct and modern species Used to make hypotheses Branch lengths not proportional to evolutionary time How to make a cladogram: 1. Organize organisms according to relatedness 2. Cladogram starts out with characteristics shared by all organisms 3. As you proceed upward, organisms share less and less characteristics (branching) Speciation and modes of speciation (allopatric, etc.) Speciation o A single species is an interbreeding reproductive community o Barrier develops, dividing the species o The divided populations become differentiated through the
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Final Exam Study Guide - Final Exam Study Guide Note: ALL...

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