Reflection: Qualitative Evaluations The Central Dogma (#6 of 6): Mutation - Section 3: Instructional Input/Student Activities


One of the most powerful skills in science is knowing how to frame an evidence-based argument. This requires students to clearly articulate a claim. Next, relevant data must be gathered, analyzed, and comprehended. Lastly, a logical and thoughtful rationale must be explained that links the claim and the evidence offered up.

You will see how successfully this student has done so. In essence, this assignment seeks to convey the idea that not all mutations (DNA changes) actually alter the resulting amino acid (at the downstream end of the process). This student's C.E.R. rightly noted that "A change in DNA code will always change the mRNA code, but most amino acids have one or more mRNA code that will create that amino acid."

This understanding can then lead to the idea that even if the amino acid were substituted, the new amino acid might have a neutral, beneficial, or negative effect.

  Qualitative Evaluations: What do you know? How do you know it? What reasoning supports your thinking?
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The Central Dogma (#6 of 6): Mutation

Unit 3: 4) DNA & RNA ("Instructions for Life")
Lesson 9 of 10

Objective: 1) All cells contain genetic information in the form of DNA molecules. Genes are regions in the DNA that contain the instructions that code for the formation of proteins, which carry out most of the work of cells. (HS-LS1-1 & HS-LS3-1) 2) Construct an explanation based on evidence for how the structure of DNA determines the structure of proteins, which carry out the essential functions of life through systems of specialized cells. (HS-LS1-1)

Big Idea: Changes to the DNA code (mutation) have the potential to produce an alternate form of the original protein chain.

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