Biology: A Guide to the Natural World

Chapter 16: An Introduction to Evolution

Chapter Review Quiz

Each question in this quiz has been categorized to help you determine the challenge level. A level 1 question typically helps you review memory recall ideas or factual content. A level 2 question typically requires integration of many ideas and a higher level thought process. You should attempt all the questions as your instructor may require both levels of performance on your exam.

1. Which of the following is a component of Darwin's original theory of evolution? (level [Hint]

2. Which of the following is true of evolution? (level 1). [Hint]

3. Of the following structures, which is homologous to that of the wing of a bat? (level 2). [Hint]

4. Richard Dawkins's book on the theories behind evolution is entitled "The Blind Watchmaker." What is the significance of this rather ironic title? (level 2). [Hint]

5. During a class on evolution one of your fellow students remarks, "The giraffe stretched its neck while reaching for higher leaves; its offspring inherited longer necks as a result." To correct your fellow student's misconception, what would you say? (level 2) [Hint]

6. Which of the following statements describes how evolution is a biological theme that ties all others together? (level 2). [Hint]

7. Some moles have eyes that are so reduced that they function only minimally in light perception. Some snakes have hind-limb bones that are reduced completely to nonfunctional remnants. Which of the following might be a plausible evolutionary argument for the reason structures like these become minimized? (level 2) [Hint]

8. Prior to Darwin's theory of evolution, most scientists presumed that organisms were ...(level 1). [Hint]

9. Which of these scientists did not believe that organisms changed over time, or evolved? (level 1). [Hint]

10. In formulating his ideas on evolution, Darwin relied on information from what other scientific disciplines? (level 2). [Hint]

11. Which of the following evidences, if it were actually discovered, would most likely cause the demise of the theory of evolution? (level 2). [Hint]

12. The overall idea that is expressed by the theory of evolution is that ... (level 1). [Hint]

13. Before Darwin's theory of evolution was accepted, there was some doubt that natural selection would actually work. What was the main stumbling block in scientists' acceptance of natural selection? (level 2). [Hint]

14. Based on your understanding of mutations and the evolutionary process, arrange these organisms in order, starting with the one that would have the closest relationship to man, and ending with the one that would have the most distant relationship to man.

  1. turtle
  2. dolphin
  3. amoeba
  4. pigeon
  5. house fly
  6. great white shark
(level 2). [Hint]

15. How do the forelimbs of a bat, whale, dog, and monkey support the theory of evolution? (level 1). [Hint]

16. Imagine a tree frog sitting on a limb of a tree when an arboreal snake suddenly attacks it. To escape predation, the frog leaps from the limb to the ground. The fall would be fatal, except that the frog spreads its fingers and toes, forming small parachutes that break its fall. After its initial discovery, the frog regularly escapes predators using this procedure. Through time and use, the webbing in its fingers and toes expand and stretch so that they become even more parachute-like and are more effective at braking the frog's fall. When this frog mates with a female of the same species, we would expect that all of its offspring ... (level 2). [Hint]

17. Uranium-238 is a radioactive element that will decay into lead-206. It has a half-life of 4.5 billion years, which means that after 4.5 billion years exactly one-half of the total amount of uranium-238 that you started with will have decayed into lead-206. Suppose you were given a 100-gram, solid block of uranium-238, and you buried it in the ground. Nine billion years from now, if someone dug it up and analyzed it, how much uranium-238 would be left? (level 1). [Hint]

18. Sometimes evolutionary changes can actually be seen occurring in populations of organisms. Which of the following characteristics is required in order to see evolutionary changes take place in a population? (level 2). [Hint]

19. Richard Dawkins, a prolific writer on evolutionary theory, has stated that when it comes to the theory of evolution, scientists are really more like detectives. Why would this be so? (level 2). [Hint]

20. Charles Darwin is given the credit for formulating the idea of evolution through natural selection. However, another naturalist came up with the same insight at approximately the same time as Darwin. Who was it? (level 1). [Hint]

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