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Assignment Questions

Term Paper Assignment on the History of the Cat Dog Horse Species


BIO 122: Zoology ? Spring 2013

You are required to complete a term paper on the life history of a vertebrate. The only limitation is that the animal cannot be a widely domesticated species (example: cat, dog, horse). The complete paper must be typed. Please note the below additional criteria:
? The typed paper needs to be at least 2,000 words, excluding title and references. This will end out being about 5.5 pages if you use 1? margins and Times New Roman font.

? The paper must include at least five (5) references that are to be properly cited, both within the paper and in a literature cited section at the end of the paper. The five references cannot include newspaper articles or your textbook; general encyclopedias are not acceptable either.

? Quotes are nice, but should be limited to less that three in the entire paper!

A number of potential resources are available for information on your favorite animal. Sources include (but are not limited to) scientific journals, Internet, books, encyclopedias and government publications. A well written paper will include a number of these resources. You must include at least one scientific journal article as a reference in your paper. We will spend at least one class meeting on searching for references and on how to properly cite these references in your paper.

A well written paper should include many different aspects of a species. Below is a list of various topics that you should consider. It is not a requirement to cover ALL these topics; however, an excellent paper will include information on most (7 or more) of these topics:
? Taxonomy ? common and scientific names; Family, Class, Order
? Morphology and anatomy ? diagnostic features; closely related species, if any; difference between sexes
? Distribution ? overall distribution; migration and/or home range; habitat preferences; factors limiting distribution
? Feeding ? types of food eaten; how food obtained
? Predators ? others eating your species; parasites; other major causes of death or sickness
? Behavior ? daily activities; seasonal activities; hibernation and/or migration; social patterns
? Reproduction ? age at first reproduction; reproductive longevity; courtship; incubation or gestation time; number of offspring at a time; characteristics of newborn
? Development ? extent of maternal care; morphological or anatomical changes with maturity; age of typical individual at death
? Demographics ? chances of survival to reproductive age; capacity for fast population growth; proportion of population reproducing
? Economic Value ? does this organism have an economic impact on humans, either positive or negative?

Your paper needs to reflect a steady progress to a well written paper, not a night-before-it’s-due frenzy. Hence a number of dues dates are listed:

Tentative organism selected ? Friday, January 25
? Scientific and common name of organism
? One photocopied reference

Outline and references for your animal ? Friday, February 22
? Outline, including major sections
? Proper citation methods should be used (at least five references)
? Literature Cited section

Draft of paper ? Friday, March 29
? This should include most or all of the paper content
? Literature Cited section complete

Final paper ? Monday, April 15
? Your paper shall be electronically submitted to charles. as an attached file no later than 4:00 pm that day.
? One half letter grade (5 pts) per day late!
? The cover page should include the title, your name, the date (or at least semester in which it is completed) and that is for the course (BIO 122).
? The type should be double spaced with one inch margins and have each page numbered.
? The typed paper needs to have a word count of at least 2,000, excluding the title page and Literature Cited page).
? Potential plagiarism will be checked. Discovery of such may result in a zero in the paper and possibly an F in the course.

The total grade on your paper is 100 points. It will be based on the following:
? Topic selection & reference ? 5 pts
? Outline ? 5 pts
? Draft ? 5 pts
? Paper ? 85 pts [content (65 pts); proper citations (10 pts); style (10 pts)]

Please note that a 5% dction will be assessed per day late on any of the above due dates unless permission is granted ahead of time.

BIO 122: Zoology


Tentative organism selection (5 pts)
? Scientific name
? Common name
? One article selected w/citation
? On time?

Outline and references for animal (5 pts)
? Content outline (with major sections)
? Five references
? Proper citation method

Draft of paper (5 pts)
? Content
? References
? On time

Final paper:
*Content (65 pts)
? Taxonomy (required)
? Morphology & anatomy (required)
? Distribution (required)
? Feeding
? Predators
? Behavior
? Reproduction (required)
? Development (required)
? Demographics
? Economic value
* Proper citations (10 pts)
* Style (10 pts)



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