Florida Science Standards
Host: Gail Tucker
Presenters: The AE Community
What Do You Know? (More than you think!)
Use these state guidelines for science as a study guide--the items on
this handout are the focus of life science in Florida. Your course
content covers each of the required concepts at one time or another.
Many of these concepts recur in the course and are repeated throughout
Here's how to use this handout:
1. Refer to the Handout--How to Get A's--and focus on learning to use the study strategies presented there.
2. Refer to each of the state standards listed below.
3. For each standard think of one example of something you have learned in biology this term that reflects the objective of that standard.
4. Write down your example and see if you can explain how it demonstrates the concept described in the state standard.
5. Study your examples as you prepare for examinations.
PROCESSES OF LIFE
Standard 1: The student describes patterns of structure and function in
1. Knows that body processes involve specific biochemical reactions
governed by biochemical principles.
2. Knows that body structures are uniquely designed and adapted for
3. Knows that membranes are sites for chemical synthesis and essential
4. Understands that biological systems obey the same laws of
conservation as physical systems.
5. Knows that complex interactions among the different kinds of
molecules in the cell cause distincy cycles of activity governed by
6. Knows that parts of the body communicate with each other using
electrical and/or chemical signals.
7. Knows that organisms respond to internal and external stimuli.
8. Knows that cell behavior can be affected by molecules from other
parts of the organism or even from other organisms.
Standard 2: The student understands the process and importance of
1. Understands the mechanisms of asexual and sexual reproduction and
knows the different genetic advantages and disadvantages of each.
2. Knows that every cell contains a "blueprint" coded in DNA molecules
that specify how proteins are assembled to regulate cells.
3. Understands the mechanisms of change (e.g., mutation and natural
selection) that lead to adaptations in a species and their ability to
survive naturally in changing conditions and to increase species
HOW LIVING THINGS INTERACT WITH THEIR ENVIRONMENT
Standard 1: The student understands the competitive, interdependent,
cyclic nature of living things in the environment.
1. Knows the great diversity and interdependence of living things.
2. Understands how the flow of energy through an ecosystem made up of
producers, consumers, and decomposers carries out the processes of life
and that some energy dissipates as heat and is not recycled.
3. Knows that the chemical elements that make up the molecules of
living things are combined and recombined in different ways.
Standard 2: The student understands the consequences of using limited
1. Knows that energy-rich deposits of organic materials have turned
gradually into coal and oil (fossil fuels) by the pressure of the
overlying earth, and that humans burn fossil fuels--releasing the energy
as heat and carbon dioxide.
2. Knows that changes in one part of an ecosystem have unpredictable
effects on the entire system, and that the components of the system
react to restore the ecosystem to its original condition.
3. Understands how genetic variation contributes to population control
and that natural selection assures that those who are best adapted to
their surroundings will live to reproduce.
4. Knows that the world's ecosystems are shaped by physical factors
that limit their productivity.
5. Understands that the amount of life any environment can support is
limited and that human activities can change the flow of energy and
reduce the fertility of the Earth.
6. Knows the ways in which humans are placing their environmental
support systems at risk (population growth, environmental degradation,
THE NATURE OF SCIENCE
Standard 1: The student uses the scientific process and thinking to
1. Knows that investigations are conducted to explore new phenomena,
to check on previous results, to test how well a theory predicts, and to
compare different theories.
2. Knows that sometimes major shifts occur in the scientific view of
how the world works, but that more often the changes that take place in
the body of scientific knowledge are small modifications of prior
3. Understands that no matter how well one theory fits observations,
others might fit as well or better, because in science, the testing,
revising, and occasional discarding of theories is ongoing and may lead
to better understanding of how things work if not to absolute truth.
4. Knows that scientists in any one research group tend to see things
alike and that therefore scientists are trained to seek out the possible
biases in the design of their investigations and in their data analyses.
5. Understands that new ideas in science are limited by the context in
which they are conceived, are often rejected by the scientific
establishment, sometimes spring from unexpected findings, and usually
grow slowly with many contributors.
6. Understands that new ideas often do not mesh well with mainstream
science, and may encounter vigorous criticism, but that in the long run,
theories are judged by how they fit with other theories, the range of
observations they explain, how well they explain these observations and
how effective they are in predicting new findings.
7. Understands the importance of a sense of responsibility, a
commitment to peer review, truthful reporting of methods and outcomes of
their investigations, and making the public aware of their findings.
Standard 2: The student understands that most natural events occur in
comprehensible, consistent patterns.
1. Knows that scientists assume the universe is a vast system in which
basic rules exist that may range from very simple to extremely complex,
but that scientists operate on the belief that the rules can be
discovered by careful, systemic study.
2. Knows that scientists control conditions in order to obtain
evidence, but when that is not possible for practical or ethical
reasons, they try to observe a wide range of natural occurrences to
Standard 3: The student understands that science, technology, and
society are interwoven and interdependent.
1. Knows that performance testing is often conducted using small-scale
models, computer simulations, or analogous systems to reduce the chance
of system failure.
2. Knows that technology often creates a need for new knowledge and
that new technologies make it possible for scientists to extend their
research in ways that advance science.
3. Knows that scientists can bring information, insights and
analytical skills to matters of public concern and help people
understand the possible causes and effects of events.
4. Knows that funds for science research come from federal government
agencies, industry and private foundations and that the funding source
often influences the direction of the research.
5. Knows that the value of a technology may differ for different
people and at different times.
6. Knows that scientific knowledge is used by those who engage in
design and technology to solve practical problems, taking human values
and limitations into account.
"Getting an A" tips page