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Ch 4: Characteristics and Life Functions of Organisms

About This Chapter

Use our video lessons and quizzes to help you understand characteristics and life functions of organisms. Explore evolution of humans, plants and other organisms.

Characteristics and Life Functions of Organisms - Chapter Summary

Come to understand humans as living organisms with life functions and many characteristics comparable to other life forms through this informative chapter. The online video lessons in this chapter also cover strategies and adaptations used by organisms to obtain requirements of life. Additional topics of study related to characteristics and life functions of organisms include the following:

  • Taxonomy: classification and naming of living things
  • Cladograms and phylogenetic trees: evolution classifications
  • Evolution of prokaryotes: archaebacteria and eubacteria
  • Evolution of protists: importance and evolutionary history
  • Evolution of plants and fungi: characteristics and evolutionary history
  • Evolution of animals: importance and evolutionary history
  • Evolution of humans: characteristics and evolutionary history
  • Factors that influence homeostasis within an organism

Each lesson in this chapter on characteristics and life functions of organisms has three components: a video presentation, a written transcript and a short, self-assessment quiz. The video lessons were developed by experienced professional educators to be brief yet thorough and engaging. The self-assessment quizzes allow you to see how well you've absorbed the information, which can indicate to you if there are areas where you need to put in some extra study time.

7 Lessons in Chapter 4: Characteristics and Life Functions of Organisms
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Taxonomy: Classification and Naming of Living Things

1. Taxonomy: Classification and Naming of Living Things

The name you give to a living thing may be completely different than the name someone else uses. In science, we use a common naming system for all living things to avoid confusion. This lesson will explore the basics of our classification system.

Cladograms and Phylogenetic Trees: Evolution Classifications

2. Cladograms and Phylogenetic Trees: Evolution Classifications

Family trees help show how people are related to each other. Similarly, scientists use cladograms and phylogenetic trees to study the relationships between organisms.

The Evolution of Prokaryotes: Archaebacteria and Eubacteria

3. The Evolution of Prokaryotes: Archaebacteria and Eubacteria

The first living organisms on Earth were bacteria. These small organisms still exist today and are responsible for many things. In this lesson, we will explore both ancient bacteria and true bacteria.

The Evolution of Protists: Importance & Evolutionary History

4. The Evolution of Protists: Importance & Evolutionary History

Some organisms are very familiar. However, there are some that play vital roles in our lives that we don't even think about. We will look at a group of one of these unfamiliar kingdoms - protists.

The Evolution of Plants and Fungi: Characteristics & Evolutionary History

5. The Evolution of Plants and Fungi: Characteristics & Evolutionary History

In early classification systems, plants and fungi were grouped together. While there are some similarities between these two kingdoms, there are some key differences that we will explore.

The Evolution of Animals: Importance & Evolutionary History

6. The Evolution of Animals: Importance & Evolutionary History

The animal kingdom ranges from simple organisms like sponges to complex organisms like humans. We will look at some defining characteristics of animals as well as examples of both invertebrates and vertebrates.

The Evolution of Humans: Characteristics & Evolutionary History

7. The Evolution of Humans: Characteristics & Evolutionary History

Just like other organisms, humans have changed over time. We will look at the evolution of humans as well as connections with our primate relatives, including Old World and New World primates.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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