Science / Year 10 / Science Understanding / Biological sciences

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Curriculum content descriptions

Transmission of heritable characteristics from one generation to the next involves DNA and genes (ACSSU184)

Elaborations
  • describing the role of DNA as the blueprint for controlling the characteristics of organisms
  • using models and diagrams to represent the relationship between DNA, genes and chromosomes
  • recognising that genetic information passed on to offspring is from both parents by meiosis and fertilisation
  • representing patterns of inheritance of a simple dominant/recessive characteristic through generations of a family
  • predicting simple ratios of offspring genotypes and phenotypes in crosses involving dominant/recessive gene pairs or in genes that are sex-linked
  • describing mutations as changes in DNA or chromosomes and outlining the factors that contribute to causing mutations
ScOT terms

Heredity

Video

ABC News: 'Junk DNA' not junk after all

Geneticists have long thought that 98 per cent of human DNA was 'junk' (or 'non-coding') DNA. However, recent scientific research suggests that there is much more to this DNA than first thought. Watch this clip to discover more.

Audio

Radio National: Using genes to unlock the secrets of Tutankhamen

Tutankhamen was an Egyptian pharaoh who ascended to the throne in 1333 BC, at the age or nine or ten. His fame in modern times is due to the discovery of his virtually intact tomb in 1922. Since then, many questions have been asked about his life and ancestry. Listen to this audio clip to find out how genetic technology ...

Video

Landline: Handling deadly viruses safely to save lives

Imagine working in a research laboratory and handling deadly animal viruses that could potentially infect humans. Find out how this vital research helps protect Australia's wildlife, farm animals and human population. See how scientists use techniques such as 'gene silencing' to fight viruses.

Video

Could you make a unicorn by crossing DNA?

Good question! Find out whether this is possible by watching as biologist at MIT, Dr Sera Thornton explains. What is a genome? And why do genomes need to be decoded? If the rhino genome was successfully decoded and the part that described the rhino horn was isolated, what would the process be for creating a unicorn?

Video

Catalyst: When does life begin?

The use of embryonic stem cells for medical research is a hotly debated ethical issue, with much of the discussion focusing on when human life begins. Listen to the views both of scientists and of some people from several faith traditions. In a major stem-cell breakthrough, scientists have discovered a new type of stem ...

Interactive

Genes

See how genes and genetic engineering work. Build models of DNA, and work out how it is copied as cells divide. Discover how the codes carried in the genes are copied and used to build proteins. See how gene splicing can be used to benefit human lives. For example, model the transfer of a human gene into bacteria, so they ...

Image

'Anhanguera blittersdorffi'

This is a model skeleton of 'Anhanguera blittersdorffi', a flying reptile with a wingspan of 4 m. It was a member of the pterosaur group, carnivorous flying reptiles with skin-covered wings.

Interactive

Natural selection

This is an interactive resource in which students explore natural selection by controlling an environment and causing mutations in rabbits. Students can select vary environments, selection pressures, mutations and associated genetics, and then observe the populations change. This interactive resource is supported by tips ...

Video

Farmers, their animals and the environment

This is a video about the valuable genetic diversity of Asia's indigenous domesticated animals; the contribution the animals' genes make to local people's food security; and the results of the use of genetic technologies. The video identifies ever-present links between farmers, their animals and the environment by describing ...

Text

The first modern humans in south-east Asia

This is a multilayered resource about the theories and evidence of the origins of the first modern humans in south-east Asia. It has four sections: Theories; The sout-heast Asian fossil record; The appearance of sout-heast Asian features; and The first modern Indonesians. The Related sections, Related items and Related ...

Interactive

Stickleback Evolution Virtual Lab - iTunes app

Enter this virtual laboratory and conduct experiments to investigate genetic variation and evolution of populations of the three-spined stickleback fish. Students analyse fish and fossillised specimens, construct tables and graphs, and interpret their analysis. There are also instructive tutorials, videos describing stickleback ...

Text

Researchers find grain's memory gene

This brief ABC News in Science article from 2009 gives an excellent example of responses of plants to temperature change and current Australian science. Plants use a genetic memory to recognise when it is spring and can even count the number of cold days.

Audio

WA students compete in US BioGENEius challenge

Yasmin Soliman and Kayla Mizzi are the two high school students who are finalists from Western Australia for the BioGENEius challenge in Atlanta Georgia. Both girls share their research and enthusiasm for science. Download the audio or view the transcript of this ABC radio interview.

Interactive

Science Talk 2007: Tim Entwistle

An interview and tour of the Royal Botanic Gardens of Sydney and its herbarium with Dr Tim Entwistle, a plant scientist and the NSW Government Botanist. Tim talks to a pre-service teacher from Macquarie University about his love of plants, in particular freshwater algae. In the herbarium we find out why it is so important ...

Video

GM Bananas

This 8 minute video segment from Catalyst explains how genetically modified bananas could be the answer to malnutrition in developing countries. Botanists in Queensland are developing genetically modified bananas that can boost vitamin and mineral content and create disease resistant varieties. Issues of lack of genetic ...

Video

Pedigree Dogs

This 12 minute video segment from Catalyst demonstrates how scientific knowledge can improve the well-being of our domestic pets and change public opinion. This show exemplifies the benefits of the application of our understanding of genetics and evolution.

Video

Ancient DNA

This 9 minute video segment from Catalyst explains the role of Australian Centre for Ancient DNA.It is an internationally recognised research centre for the study of minute traces of preserved genetic material - species studied date from a million years ago to more modern day mysteries... from mammoths to the Tassie devil, ...

Text

Species on the move

This ABC In Depth feature article presents arguments about moving vulnerable species to cooler climates in advance of climate change is a controversial strategy, and whether it could be the best way of ensuring their survival.

Interactive

Sites2See: Databases for science

A page with downloadable examples, exemplars and advice to help integrate database use in teaching and learning for science. Includes suggestions and reasons for using databases in science, practise activities and information on research and benefits, plus links to a range of related resources.

Video

Monkey Malaria

This 13 minute video segment from Catalyst describes recent research in Borneo investigates malaria that is common to monkeys and humans.