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BIO 100A Unit 1 Home Lab 1″ Metric, Lab 2: Enzymes, Lab 3: Cellular Respiration, Lab 4: Genetics and DNA

BIO 100A Unit 1 Home Lab 1″ Metric, Lab 2: Enzymes, Lab 3: Cellular Respiration, Lab 4: Genetics and DNA

BIO 100A Online Home Lab Reports

Instructions and Grading Rubric (40p)

Due by: 11:59 PM PST on the second Sunday of class




1. Before attempting to perform a lab, read the lab’s protocol in its entirety, look over the relevant supplemental materials, and gather all of the necessary materials.

2. Exercise caution and respect the safety of yourself and others at all times.

3. Keep notes as you perform experiments.

4. Use the lab reports to report your results.

5. Type your answers, observations, and results in bold.

6. Save your report often as you fill it out, so as not to lose information.

7. Use the “Save As” option to save your file as a Word file.

8. Save your lab report with this file name: Last name, underscore, First Initial, underscore H1. Thus Charles Darwin would save his Unit 1 Home Lab Report 1 as Darwin_C_H1.

9. Submit reports 1-4 as under the corresponding assignment link in week 2before 11:59 PM PST on the second Sunday of class.

10. Submit reports 5-8 as under the corresponding assignment link in week 4before 11:59 PM PST on the second Sunday of class.

11. Please note that the reports will be scanned for plagiarism, and it will be flagged for both containing web content verbatim and previously submitted papers– this includes your previous submissions if you have taken the class previously.


Laboratory Reports


Each of your lab reports MUST include the following components to receive full credit and be organized in the following way.


1. Purpose (4 pts): one to two sentences briefly stating the learning objective for the assigned lab.


2. Lab Summary (6 pts): Explain what was observed during the lab activity. This section should be approximately one paragraph in length.


3. Lab Answers (14 pts): Answers to the lab report questions that reflect and demonstrate your understanding on the concepts. (Should be written in complete sentences for Labs 2-6)

4. Discussion and Conclusions (16 pts):1-2 paragraph learning reflection that summarize the lab and specifically addresses the learning objectives relating them back to the data or observations collected in the lab.


Grading rubric




Poor Effort

Good; Needs Improvement

Meets all Requirements


No purpose provided (0 points)

Purpose does not state the learning objective and is unclear (1 point)

Purpose states learning objective but is not well thought through or written in a complete sentences. Purpose does not cover all aspects of the lab. (2 point)

Purpose states the learning objective, touches all aspects of the lab, and is written in a complete, well-thought out sentences (4 points)

Lab Summary

Missing (0 points)

Summary is incomplete (2 point)

Summary lacks complete thoughts and are not thorough (4 points)

Summary explains what occurred throughout the entirety of the lab and are 1 paragraph in length (6 points)

Lab Answers

No answers provided (0 points)


Lab answers lack detail, understanding, and/or bold print. Not all answers are provided (2-6 points)

Lab answers are provided and reveal the student had a strong understanding of the lab objectives. Not all questions are answered in detail or in bold. (8-12 points)

All lab answers are provided and reveal the student had a strong understanding of the lab objectives. Each question is answered in detail and in complete sentences. Also, the answers are in bold (14 points)

Discussion and Conclusions

No discussion & conclusions (0 points)

The discussion & conclusions does not meet length requirements and provides a weak summary of the lab activity and data (2-8 points)

The discussion & conclusions is on the shorter side of the length requirements and does not contain a thorough summary of the lab objectives and/or findings (9-15 points).

The discussion & conclusions is 1 -2 paragraphs long and contains references to the data found in the lab. The conclusion summarizes findings and reiterates the learning outcomes. Numerical values are mentioned. Possible issues, mistakes, and other occurrences during the lab are discussed (16 points). Please note this is not a diary!

Weak discussion & conclusions containing little in the way of quality content or revealing a lack of effort towards reflecting on the purpose of the lab activity will receive ZERO credit!


Unit 1 Home Lab 1: Metric system

Points: 40p




Purpose (4p)





Lab Summary (6p)







Lab Answers (14p)

1. Using a metric ruler, determine the length of the items in Table 1.1 below:


In the final column, you are to estimate your measurement precision. To do this, measure each item a second or even third time. How close are the measurements? If there is a range of values for the length you measure, record the average difference between measurement values as your uncertainty. If your measured value for a given object appears the same after repeated measurements, this does not necessarily mean that your uncertainty is zero. Look closely at your ruler or measurement device and estimate the smallest unit of length that you would be able to discriminate with it. Every measurement device has limits. For instance, very few people use a ruler with a precision greater than 1/3 or 1/2 of a millimeter; in many cases, even this precision is difficult or impossible to obtain. Typically +/- 1 mm is standard for measuring flat objects with a ruler, but this uncertainty can be expected to go up when the object has significant curvature or its length is not quite so well defined.


To measure the circumference (length around) of your head or thigh, wrap a piece of string around it and mark where the string meets itself. Then lay the string out flat and measure the length with your ruler.


Table 1.1. Metric measurements and uncertainties.









Your favorite shoe






Your index finger






A pencil






Fingernail of your pinky






Width of a credit card


The circumference of

your thigh


The circumference of

your head


2. Measure and record volume in Table 1.2.


Estimate the rough volume of your head by using the circumference (denoted C) and multiplying out this formula (based on the volume of a sphere =4pr3/3 = C3/(6p2)):


Volume ? 1/59 × C × C × C = C3/59


Estimate the uncertainty in your head volume (?V, called “delta V”) calculation by using the uncertainty in your measurement of the circumference of your head (denoted ?C) and multiplying through the following formula:


?V ? 3/59 × C × C × ?C = 3/59 × C2 × ?C


Table 1.2. Head volume and uncertainty estimates.



Uncertainty in



Head Volume


? 1/59 C3

Uncertainty in

Head Volume (?V)

? 3/59 × C2 × ?C




3. Complete the conversions in Table 1.3. The first row has been done.


Table 1.3. Length conversions.






2.0 km





705 m




3.25 miles




300 ft





4. Complete the conversions in Table 1.4.


Table 1.4. Mass conversions.




pounds (lbs)

5.0 kg



400 g




50 pounds






5. Complete the conversions in Table 1.5.


Table 1.5. Volume conversions.





6.0 liters (l)



600 ml




3 gallons





6. Complete the conversions in Table 1.6.


Table 1.6. Temperature conversions.




100 °C



27 °C



-2 °C



27 °F



95 °F



-40 °F





7. Population biologists use the term “Doubling time” to refer to how long it takes a population to double in size. This concept is particularly useful when the average time for a given individual to reproduce is fairly constant in a species. Consider a bacterial population that can reproduce by dividing into two daughter cells (binary fission) from an original single individual cell. Assume a doubling time of ten minutes and fill out the following table. At time zero there is one bacterium, ten minutes later there are two bacteria, ten minutes after that there are 4 bacteria, etc. Fill in the blanks in Table 1.7.


Table 1.7. Population growth.

Number of Bacteria




First exceeds




30 min

1 hour

2 hour



Unit 1 Home Lab 2: Enzymes

Points: 40p




Purpose (4p)


Lab Summary (6p)


Lab Answers (14p)

1. Fill in the following table. Compare all cups. Use relative terms to describe the size and number of bubbles in each cup. For instance, describe the Number of Bubbles using the terms: No bubbling, Moderate bubbling, Good bubbling, Very good bubbling. To describe average bubble size use the terms: Very small, Small, Large, or Very large. To describe pH without access to pH detectors, simply use the pH chart earlier in this chapter to describe each as acidic, neutral,or basic. To describe the Catalase Activity, use your data on the size and number of bubbles to estimate the amount of gas produced in the Catalase mediated process. Use the following terms: Very Low, Low, Moderate, High, Very high


Table 2.1. Catalase reaction observations.


Number of Bubbles

Size of















2. Bubbling indicates the formation of what chemical?



3. Describe the activity of Catalase as pH increases. Do you think that other enzymes are likely to behave in this way as well? Why or why not.



4. Assume that you have a pH meter which would enable you to very accurately measure the pH of a solution. Describe an experimental design that would allow you to pinpoint the exact pH at which Catalase is the most active.



5. Regarding cup #1:

a) Describe the utility of cup #1 as a control.

b) What other material did you introduce to this cup? Describe what you observed. How does Catalase activity in the material you investigated compare to potato?

Unit 1 Home Lab 3: Cellular Respiration

Points: 40p




Purpose (4p)


Lab Summary (6p)


Lab Answers (14p)

1. List the following experimental materials:

a) Kind of yeast used:

b) Kind of water used:

c) Average temperature of the water bath during the experiment:

d) Average room temperature during the experiment (estimate if necessary):

e) Duration of yeast solutions exposure to bath:


2. List your results in Tables 3.1 – 3.4.


Table 3.1. Independent variables and experimental conditions.





Yeast solution

height (in cm)

To be heated in warm water bath?


1 teasp

2 teasp

¼ cup


No. Leave this bottle at room temp.


1 teasp

2 teasp

¼ cup




1 teasp

2 teasp

¼ cup


Yes. Replicates bottle #2


1/3 teasp

2 teasp

¼ cup




No Sugar

2 teasp

¼ cup





¼ cup



Table 3.2. Observations of dependent variables.


Balloon size

Yeast growth

Other observations
















Table 3.3. Balloon size and solution height measurements.



C (cm)

Uncertainty in C,



(long axis, R;


Uncertainty in R,



New height of

yeast solution

(in cm)















3. In Table 3.4, record yeast growth and estimated volume of each balloon on Bottles 1-6.


a. Yeast growth = New height (in Table 3.3) – Original height (in Table 3.1)


b. If the balloon did not inflate, it has a volume of zero.


c. To estimate the volume of each balloon, use the following formula for the approximate volume of an ellipsoid with a horizontal circumference C and long axis radius R (from Table 3.3):


Volume ? 2/19 × (C × C × R)


d. To estimate the fractional uncertainty in the volume, use this formula:


?V ? 2 × (?C +?R) / C


Table 3.4. Yeast growth and balloon volume.


Independent Variable

Yeast growth:

(Change in

solution height)

Balloon Volume


Uncertainty in

Balloon Volume

estimate (?V)


No heating



Control 1



Control 2



1/3 teaspoon sugar



No sugar






4. Outline the experimental questions in this yeast activity (in a paragraph or two).


5. Describe what is measured by the balloon volume. How does it correlate with yeast growth?


6. Compare Bottles # 2 & 3. Are they very different? Discuss the utility of having a duplicate measurement when considering the precision of your experimental technique.


7. Compare Bottles # 1 to 2 & 3 and discuss the effect of temperature on cellular respiration in yeast.


8. Compare Bottles # 2, 3, 4, 5 and discuss the effect of sugar on cellular respiration in yeast.


9. Discuss results obtained with your experimental Bottle #6 in comparison with the other experimental conditions.


10. In a paragraph or two, describe your conclusions, thoughts about what you learned about cellular respiration, and/or things that went wrong.

Unit 1 Home Lab 4: Genetics and DNA

Points: 40p




Purpose (4p)


Lab Summary (6p)


Lab Answers (14p)


1. Describe what you can see in the final DNA extraction solution. Is the precipitant bubbly or stringy? Does it stick together or does it form many islands?


2. List your phenotype for the tongue rolling, ear attachment, and hitch-hiker thumb traits in Table 4.1. Use the following notation:

a) If you can roll your tongue, then your phenotype is R. If you cannot, then your phenotype is r.

b) If your earlobes are unattached, then your phenotype is U. If your earlobes are attached, then your phenotype is u.

c) If you do not have a hitch-hiker thumb, then your phenotype is H. If you do have a hitch-hiker thumb, then your phenotype is h.


Use the information above to determine your possible genotypes and record them in Table 4.1. Notice that the phenotype for a given trait is recorded with a single letter, whereas the genotype requires two letters per trait.


Then, using what you have figured about your genotype, infer the different possible genotypes that your parents could have had. For instance, if you determine that your possible genotype for earlobe attachment is UU or Uu,then the possible parental genotypes are:


Possible parents of UU: UU ×UU; UU ×Uu; Uu × Uu

Possible parents of Uu: UU ×Uu; UU × uu; Uu × Uu; Uu × uu


For this question, do not ask your parents about their phenotypes! You will do this in question 3. Question 2 is an exercise in inference based on your understanding of genetics.





Table 4.1. Personal phenotype and genotype; inferred possible parental genotypes.





Your possible


Inferred possible parental genotypes



Tongue rolling

(R or r)



Earlobe attachment

(U or u)



Hitch-hiker thumb

(H or h)





3. Complete Table 4.2 for you, any blood relatives that you can ask (i.e., parents, siblings, children, etc.), and at least five unrelated “Others” (e.g., spouse, friends, co-workers, etc.). As before, phenotypes for a given trait are recorded with a single letter. You may wish to report separately on your children and spouse in Table 4.3.


Table 4.2. Observed parental, sibling, and other’s phenotypes,












Tongue rolling

(R or r)



Earlobe attachment

(U or u)



Hitch-hiker thumb

(H or h)




In Table 4.2, are there any traits that are particularly common or uncommon among you and your relatives, compared to the unrelated others?

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