AS Biology Coursework

In: Coursework writing tips

Below is a short excerpt from an AS biology coursework written on the topic of biological species.  The topic is rather broad and serves as an introduction to a narrowed research.  Reading the following biology coursework sample, pay special attention to the sentence structure, use of terms, and format. Custom-Paper-Writing.com writers are online 24/7 to help you with your coursework writing assignments. Moreover, our free writing blog is full of excellent sample essays and papers.

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Species represents a biological balance, and an individual is also a balance or system in equilibrium. Within a species itself, individuals are similar but not identical. The differences are called variations, and when numbers of individuals exhibit the same variation they form a variety. A variety is distinguished from a race because the latter has greater constancy, whereas the former fluctuates in general and tends to disappear, whilst individuals showing such variation engender a line which continues over a larger or smaller number of generations and becomes approximated to the specific type. This is what Galton in 1889 termed "filial regression."

Specific characters do exist representing a middle term, and on one side or the other of this average, we find variations which arithmetically follow Gauss's Law, or the Law of Mean Errors of the Calculus of Probabilities. This can be confirmed by taking the more distinctive characters. Thus height, weight, colour of eyes, basic intensity of metabolism, pulse, blood pressure, and so on. In species other than the human we can take for instance the weight of certain seeds, the height of a plant, the number of vertebrae in certain fish, and so forth. The graph showing such variations quantitatively is called a "Galton's curve," and demonstrates that individuals showing typical average characters of the species are the most numerous, whilst divergencies above and below such average diminish in proportion to the degree of variation of the character from the average type. Thus, for instance, the height of individuals: there is an average height, a distinctive feature for each species and this will be the height of the majority of specimens. There are taller individuals and shorter ones, and the numbers of these outsiders decreases as their height differs more and more from the standard.

There is furthermore, as we have repeatedly mentioned, a tendency to revert to the specific standard. Short parents and tall usually have offspring whose height is different from their own and more or less in accordance with the variance of the parents from the average standard. In all of these cases the tendency for "reversion to type," to "balance" in the species, is evident. There may well exist primitive species with a certain degree of stability, fairly constant in form, such as those distinguished by Jordan in 1848 as between the plants and the midpoint of the limits of a Linnaean species. Thus, for instance, in Viola tricolor, Jordan distinguished several dozen various species, independent and stable as regards the transmission of their characters through the seeds: with large, small and middling blossoms respectively identifiable through particular features of the component parts of the blossoms, seeds, and so on.

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