In addition to demonstrating the performance indicators relating to scientific inquiry described in Standard 1, biology students need to develop proficiency in certain laboratory or technical skills in order to successfully conduct investigations in biological science. During the school year, teachers should ensure that students develop the capacity to successfully perform each of the laboratory skills listed below. Proficiency in performing these laboratory skills may also be evaluated by items found on certain parts of the State’s Living Environment assessment.

¥ Follows safety rules in the laboratory

¥ Selects and uses correct instruments

¥ Uses graduated cylinders to measure volume

¥ Uses metric ruler to measure length

¥ Uses thermometer to measure temperature

¥ Uses triple-beam or electronic balance to measure mass

¥ Uses a compound microscope/stereoscope effectively to see specimens clearly, using different magnifications

¥ Identifies and compares parts of a variety of cells

¥ Compares relative sizes of cells and organelles

¥ Prepares wet-mount slides and uses appropriate staining techniques

¥ Designs and uses dichotomous keys to identify specimens

¥ Makes observations of biological processes

¥ Dissects plant and/or animal specimens to expose and identify internal structures

¥ Follows directions to correctly use and interpret chemical indicators

¥ Uses chromatography and/or electrophoresis to separate molecules

¥ Designs and carries out a controlled, scientific experiment based on biological processes

¥ States an appropriate hypothesis

¥ Differentiates between independent and dependent variables

¥ Identifies the control group and/or controlled variables

¥ Collects, organizes, and analyzes data, using a computer and/or other laboratory equipment

¥ Organizes data through the use of data tables and graphs

¥ Analyzes results from observations/expressed data

¥ Formulates an appropriate conclusion or generalization from the results of an experiment

¥ Recognizes assumptions and limitations of the experiment