Unit 2: Genetics, Heredity, and Inheritance In this section, you will have an opportunity to put your understanding of Mendelian genetics and inheritance to use by engaging in virtual experiments and problem-solving exercises. These exercises will not only provide you with an opportunity to test your skills but will give you a better sense of how our knowledge of inheritance patterns is used to answer current biological questions.
Unit 2 Time Advisory
This unit should take you approximately 5 hours to complete.
Unit2 Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this unit, the student will be able to:
- Identify and describe the types of Mendelian inheritance. - Design experiments based on Mendelian inheritance patterns.
2.1 Types of Inheritance – Tutorial and Review
- Reading: University of Arizona: The Biology Project’s Human
Biology Problem Sets and Tutorials: “Blood Types,” “Color
Blindness,” and “Human Genetics”
Link: University of Arizona: The Biology Project’s Human Biology
Problem Sets and Tutorials: “Blood
(HTML) and “Human
Instructions: Read through each of these tutorials and answer all problem-set questions. Please note that in order to continue from the first page through the Color Blindness tutorial and problem set, you must click on the link at the bottom of the page titled “Brief introduction to sex-linked inheritance.”
2.2 Genetics in the “Lab”
- Interactive Lab: Pearson Education: Theresa Holtzclaw’s “Genetics
Links: Pearson Education: Theresa Holtzclaw’s “Genetics of
Instructions: Although the initial illustrations may look more kid-friendly than college-level, this is an excellent introductory exercise that will not only ask you important questions but will also introduce you to lab-work and techniques involved in real genetics research. Go through all of the steps of this interactive exercise, which will allow you to learn about experimental procedures (including sexing fruit flies) and statistical analyses while also testing your understanding of autosomal and sex-linked inheritance.
2.3 Genetics “Experiments”
- Web Media: MIT: StarGenetics: “User Manual,” “Mendelian Genetics
Virtual Lab,” and “Sample Exercises”
Link: MIT: StarGenetics: “User
(HTML) “Mendelian Genetics Virtual
Lab,” (HTML, Java) and
Instructions: Read the User Manual and download the StarGenetics application (this will require Java). Browse the sample exercises and choose an exercise to work on. There are no answer keys for these exercises, but they will allow you to test your own understanding of inheritance across generations and will give you the license to experiment with your own choice of experimental crosses. If you’d like some guidelines for working through one of these exercises, please go to “Fruit Fly Exercise 2, Level One” on the “Sample Exercises” page linked above, and check your work against The Saylor Foundation’s “BIO102 Lab Answer Key.” (PDF)