iology 2.8: Investigate biological material at the microscopic level

Internal, 3 credits, extended practical investigation with folio
This achievement standard involves investigating biological material at the microscopic level.

Achievement with Merit
Investigate biological material at the microscopic level.
Investigate in-depth biological material at the microscopic level.
Note: Achievement with Excellence is not available in this standard at the moment, apparently due to a very bad case of education bureaucrats being bureaucrats rather than educators or scientists.
1. Achievement criteria:
Carry out an investigation involves:
  • preparing biological material for viewing under a light microscope
  • viewing biological material using a light microscope to enable detail of cell structures and components to be determined
  • recording observations of biological material in biological drawings
  • Identifying observed specialised features and relating them to the function of the cells or tissues.

Investigate in-depth involves:
  • Giving reasons for how or why observed specialised features enable the cells to effectively carry out their specific function(s).

2. Biological material for viewing must includeid two different plant tissues and one unicellular organism.

3. The preparation of material, to allow an accurate drawing to be produced, may include: staining, use of cavity slides, use of cellulose, epidermal tear, cutting sections.

4. A biological drawing follows the accepted conventions to record observations consistent with the material viewed. Consistency of observations with the biological material used must include recognisable shape and proportions and inclusion of typical organelles present in a cell, appropriate to the magnification. At the achieved grade, the biological drawing may contain some errors in applying conventions or minor inaccuracies in representation. At the merit grade the biological drawing may contain some minor errors as long as they do not affect the accuracy of the representation of the biological material being viewed.

5. Specialised features may include: arrangement of cells or cell types within a tissue, shape of a cell, presence or absence of a specific organelle, quantity or distribution of organelles within a cell. Notes about the specialised features may accompany the biological drawing (eg a fully annotated diagram).

6. Relating observed specialised features to the function of the cell or tissue must include: identifying the feature or organelle, stating its function, and giving reasons for why or how it contributes to the function of the cell or tissue.