Warm Ups
Contemporary Biology N100, Spring 2001

Warm Up 1: Scientific Method, Evolution

What is the difference between a theory and a belief? You may want to look these terms up before answering. Be as specific as you can, and give an example of each.

What characteristic determines whether organisms belong to the same species? Why are, for instance, are Rottweilers, bulldogs, and poodles - phenotypically (ie physical appearance) very different - considered to be members of the same species - dogs? Why are all humans, despite our numerous phenotypic differences, considered to be one species?

: What does the term Survival of the Fittest mean? How does the environment influence the survival of an organism?

QUESTION 4: Totally Optional: (ie none of my business): but if you would like to answer this, I would like to hear your thoughts. I will not share these answers with the class. Do you feel that there is an 'either / or' choice between your religious beliefs and evolutionary theory - ie. that you must reject the idea of evolution because of your religious beliefs, or that you can't believe in God if you accept the evidence for evolution? Is it possible to have both a belief in God and an acceptance of the evidence supporting evolution?

See Selected Student Responses to this Warm Up