Genetics Assessment Paths (Project guidelines)

You will have a choice of summative assessments for the Genetics Unit.  All choices will be worth the same weight toward your grade (a big chunk of your grade) and all choices cover the same material.  For a self-checklist of what you should know in order to do the projects, please see the "Genetics I Can Statements" tab on this website. 

Here are your choices:

Assessment Path 1:  My Family Pedigree!

TASK:  You will be constructing a genetically and genealogical accurate pedigree of your own family.  Your pedigree must have a minimum number of family members (including yourself) and must follow a minimum number of traits.  See below:


2 traits, 12 family members

3 traits, 8 family members

4 traits, 6 family members

*Note: If you do not have 6 family members, you may do additional traits or add in an imaginary spouse and offspring for yourself.

REQUIREMENTS:  The pedigree must be on poster-sized paper or larger.  It must include an accurate key.  A viewer must be able to easily tell names, relationships, phenotypes and genotypes of all members in the pedigree.  For individuals whose genotypes are uncertain, all possibilities must be given and an explanation of why you are not certain.

HELP:  Some examples of students’ pedigrees were available in class.  can be seen at this website.  However, note that these students have only followed a single trait and you will be following more than one trait.

Who might choose this path?  This task would be a good choice for students who want to know or tell more about their families, who don’t take tests well, or who are visual or creative.

See below for possible traits that will work for this project.


Assessment Path 2:  The Golden Fleece Project – The quest for the Golden Fleece!

BACKGROUND:  A fleece is the wool of a sheep.  Ancient Greek mythology has tales about a ram (a male sheep) who had a golden fleece.  This project is a twist on that theme, but takes place in current time. 

TASK:  You will be role playing an agriculturalist who wants to have a fully golden flock of sheep.  You will be given three choices of rams to mate with the heterozygous ewe (female sheep) that you already have.  You are to choose the ram that will give you the most likely chance of golden offspring at the most reasonable cost.  In order to do so, you must use pedigrees and Punnett squares and be able to make wise choices with partial information.  You must present a convincing argument to justify your choice and the amount of money you have spent.  Information about the rams and costs, etc. will be provided to you in class.  You will not have to do any outside research.

Who might choose this path?  This task would be a good choice for students who like to communicate with others, who are able to use logic and support their choices with evidence, or for students interested in how farmers make choices about who to breed their stock with.  It would also be a good choice for students who have limited information about their family or who want to work entirely in class.  

This activity may be completed with a partner or approved small group.  By doing so, all partners agree to share the grade, regardless of teammate’s contributions (so choose wisely).

Assessment Path 3:  Traditional Formal Test

TASK:  Take a 50-question multiple choice (ScanTron) test on genetics.  This test is written by Ms. LaSovage and is typical of her style.  Test will be administered in class on Wednesday, April 25.

Class time prior to the test will be spent working on review, studying, and clarifying the genetics concepts.  The test does include some questions on alternate forms of inheritance (incomplete dominance, codominance, etc.)

Who might choose this path?  This task would be a good choice for students who take tests well, who are frequently absent (or who will be absent in the next few days), or for students who dislike projects or group tasks.  The test will be the default assignment for any student who is not in class to work on the project and has not made prior arrangements.



Students will have class time on Tuesday, 3/24, Wednesday 3/25 and Thursday, 3/26 to work on projects and study for the exam. The exam will be administered on Thursday 3/26.  On test day, projects may be worked on in class silently, but all are due at the end of the hour.  (*Ask if bonus will be available for early submission of projects.)  All projects and testing will be FINISHED at the end of your own class hour on Thursday 3/26.

ADDITIONAL GRADING NOTE:  Participation scores for in class work days will be incorporated to your grade.  These scores will be based on the rules of Active Learning, Active Respect and Active Safety.  Follow them all and succeed!

ALSO:  As always, extra consideration will be given to students who go above and beyond.



Possible Traits to Use for Pedigree Project

  Inheritance Patterns for use on the Family Pedigree Project, including
  "Which is the dominant phenotype and which is the recessive phenotype?"  
    Dominant phenotype Recessive phenotype
1 Earlobes  (attached or unattached)  unattached (free) attached
2 Left thumb or right thumb on top when folding hands (left or right) left thumb on top right thumb on top
3 Freckles (yes or no) freckles no freckles
4 Crooked little finger (yes or no)   *this refers to natural pinky shape, not changes due to injury bent pinky  straight pinky
5 Tongue curling (yes or no) can curl tongue (roller) cannot curl tongue (nonroller)
6 Widow’s peak (yes or no) widow's peak no widow's peak (straight hairline)
7 Cheek dimples (yes or no) dimples no dimples
8 Hitchhiker’s thumb (yes or no) straight thumb reflexed thum (hitchhiker's thumb)
9 Eyelash length (long or short) long eyelashes short eyelashes
10 Hair on backs of fingers (yes or no) hair no hair
11 Cleft in chin (yes or no) no cleft cleft present
12 Blood type A and B dominant to O but co-dominant with each other O recessive to A and B
13 Eyebrow joined or separate  *this refers to natural hair pattern, not cosmetic changes made by plucking, shaving, etc. separated (two eyebrows) joined (unibrow)
14 Eye shape (round, almond) almond (tapered at edges) round (you would know it if you saw it)