2.1 Carry out a practical Biological investigation in a Biology context, with supervision
Below are the requirements for A, M and E. You need to set yourself a goal and ensure you know what you need to do to reach it!
If you aren't sure what any of the terms below mean (i.e. independent variable), jump back to the Level 1 Investigation page to re-familiarize yourself! If you head to that page you can press CTRL+F and type in the word you're looking for in the box that pops up - saves you scrolling through the whole page!
ACHIEVED - CARRY OUT A PRACTICAL INVESTIGATION IN A BIOLOGY CONTEXT, WITH SUPERVISION
You must meet all the criteria for ACHIEVED to be awarded with the grade - all of the following bullet points must be covered in your investigation to receive an ACHIEVED grade!
1. Develop a statement of the purpose written as a hypothesis, linked to a scientific concept or idea
- This is a statement, not a huge paragraph
- Purpose written as a hypothesis - a hypothesis is an educated guess about what you will see - it also mentions both variables (IV, DV)
- Linked to a scientific concept or idea - a quick link to science.. why do you predict xyz will happen? Relate your guess to the science!
2. Use a method that describes a range for the independent variable, the measurement of the dependent variable, and the control of some other key variables
- A method must be written very clearly and explains exactly how to do everything
- Independent variable - what is changed // Dependent variable - what is measured
- Describe a range for the independent variable - state all the values of the independent variable in your method. It could be that the last step of your method states that steps 2-13 must be repeated for __, __, __, __ (other values).
- Describe the measurement of the dependent variable - your method must clearly state exactly how the dependent variable will be measured, and state what units it must be measured in!
- In your method it must be clear how other variables, that could affect your results, are kept constant!
3. Collect, record and process data relevant to the purpose of the investigation
- You need to collect and record your own data - not allowed to copy off someone else's results table!
- Processing data - this means 'doing something' with your raw data - the best thing to do first is to average the data to help you see a trend! You may like to draw a graph to help see the trend too!
- Make sure your table and/or graph have a title and correct units on them!
4. Interpret and report on the findings
- You need to attempt to describe the results and suggest what they mean (how the IV affects the DV)
5. Reach a conclusion based on your processed data which is relevant to the purpose of the investigation
- You need to talk about your processed data (averages) and use this to explain whether or not you confirm or reject your hypothesis
- Relate to the biological concept that underlies the investigation
6. Identify and include relevant findings from another source
- In your interpretation/conclusion/discussion you need to refer to some research conducted by someone else! You will get some information during your assessment and somewhere in your report you need to use this information to help you explain your results or compare them!
merit - CARRY OUT AN IN-DEPTH PRACTICAL INVESTIGATION IN A BIOLOGY CONTEXT, WITH SUPERVISION
You must meet all the criteria for ACHIEVED before you can get a MERIT - the following bullet points must be covered in your investigation AS WELL AS the bullet points for achieved. Many of the below points are add-ons to the achieved criteria (i.e. going a little bit further for each part).
1. Use a method that describes a valid range for the independent variable, the valid measurement of the dependent variable and the control of other key variables with consideration of factors such as sampling bias and sources or error
- Describe a valid range for the IV - you need to test a range that is relevant to the range associated with the independent variable and biological concept you are investigating - you want a range that is balanced on both sides of the optimum survival value (i.e. temperature for enzyme reactions, consider optimum then have a range on both sides to help show a trend)
- Describe the valid measurement of the dependent variable - state explicitly how the person reading your method should measure the dependent variable.. I encourage you to 'go overboard' with how you spell this one out, to make sure you get it right!
- With consideration of factors such as sampling bias and sources or error - in your method, make your steps very clear for your controlled variables - state exactly how to keep them controlled (i.e. set up a water bath at 50'C vs. fill a 300mL beaker with 250mL of water at 50'C, ensure the temperature remains within 1'C of this value)
2. Collect, record and process data which enables a trend or pattern (or the absence of a trend or pattern) to be determined
- Your processed data should easily show the presence/absence of a trend. If you do a table, make sure you have everything correctly labelled and in a logical order (i.e. if you carried out your investigation in a random order, make sure your table is logical - say you were investigating temperature and you worked in this order: 50'C, 40'C, 70'C, 60'C, 30'C.. you wouldn't write your table up in that order as that would make it hard to see a trend - you would write it up as 30'C, 40'C, 50'C, 60'C, 70'C
- Your processed data, if a graph, must be accurate and a line of best fit must be used to show a trend
3. Reach a valid conclusion based on your processed data which is relevant to the purpose of the investigation
- Your conclusion can't just be any old conclusion - it must clearly relate to your purpose and incorporate your data too. The ideas in your conclusion must be valid! Here's the definition of valid for you!
4. A discussion of the biological ideas relating to the investigation that is based on your findings and those from other sources
- You must use what you've learned in class to explain your results. Give scientific reasons for the trend!
- You need to refer to your own results to discuss the biological ideas
- You must also refer to the results of 2+ sources to help relate the underlying biological ideas to your investigation - do the results/findings of others agree with your results, or are they different? Why?
EXCELLENCE - CARRY OUT A COMPREHENSIVE PRACTICAL INVESTIGATION IN A BIOLOGY CONTEXT, WITH SUPERVISION
You must meet all the criteria for MERIT before you can get an EXCELLENCE - the following bullet points must be covered in your investigation AS WELL AS the bullet points for merit, and achieved.
1. Justify the choices made during the sound investigation, i.e. evaluating the validity of the method or reliability of the data and explaining the conclusion in terms of the biology ideas relevant to the investigation
- Justify the choices made - evaluating the validity of the method - this means you need to describe the variables you controlled during the investigation, explaining how and why you controlled them and suggesting how they would have affected your dependent variable if you had not controlled these (relate to content.. enzymes, photosynthesis, respiration, whatever is relevant)
- Justify the choices made - evaluating the reliability of the data - this means you need to explain how your data is reliable and not just a one-off - how do you know that you can trust your own data?
- Explain the conclusion in terms of the biology ideas relevant to the investigation - this means you need to have a comprehensive discussion that contains a sufficient amount of biology to explain the trend present in your results - the ideas come from your learning from your previous unit of work, and the other sources you have access to.