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Discussion Questions

This page contains resource questions and discussion points designed to further conversation on the subject of climate change and evolution.

A Review of Processes and Patterns of Evolution


1. Ceridwen’s research was investigating populations of the species Durvillaea antarctica. D. antarctica is a very large algae. What are the defining characteristics of algae?


2. Defining the term “species” can be problematic. Create a concept map for the terms “species” and “population”, and explore with your group why the term “species” can be problematic. 


3. A population has a specific gene pool which is defined as the genetic make up of the population. Using a concept map, outline the factors that impact on the stability of a gene pool. 


4. What is gene flow? How does gene flow (or lack of) contribute to speciation? 


5. List the stages in the process of allopatric speciation. What are the important factors necessary for a new species to form?


Important Vocabulary: Test Yourself

Climate cycles Climate systems DNA extraction
DNA sequencing Extinction Gene pool
Genetic diversity Glacial pool Green house gases
Habitat Haplotype Inference
Interglacial period Invertebrate Last glacial maximum
Macro-algae Non-glacial period Phylogenetic tree
Polymerase chain reaction Population Rafting
Sea level Sea-ice Selection pressures
Speciation Species Species distribution patterns