Copyright

Ch 16: MCAS STE Biology: Ecology

About This Chapter

Use the video lessons in this chapter to study up on how environmental systems and populations affect one another. The lessons will help you prepare for ecological questions on the MCAS STE Biology exam.

MCAS STE Biology - Chapter Summary

The lessons in this chapter will help you prepare for the MCAS STE Biology exam by reviewing many different topics related to ecology. After this chapter, you will have explored:

  • Effects on populations: birth, death, immigration & emigration
  • Natural and man-made effects on an ecosystem
  • Food webs, chains and trophic levels
  • Competition between different species
  • Interaction between predator and prey
  • Symbiotic relationships
  • Carrying capacity of an ecosystem
  • Invasive species impact on ecological balance
  • Biogeochemical cycling
  • Nitrogen and carbon cycles

Each lesson has been developed by professional educators to provide you with various methods for learning. You will watch a short video lesson that illustrates the information being covered, and you'll also find a transcript of the video to refer to for text-based learning and note-taking. At the end of each lesson there's a self-assessment quiz for you to test your application of the material.

MCAS STE Biology - Objectives

The MCAS STE Biology exam is a standardized test administered to high school students in Massachusetts. The exam assesses students' ability to meet educational learning standards in biology defined by the Massachusetts Curriculum Framework. The questions on the exam cover five main content areas related to biology. The information in this section will cover questions related to ecology, which account for 20% of the final score.

The MCAS STE Biology exam is one of four Science and Technology/Engineering tests administered to high school students. The exam is comprised of 40 multiple-choice questions and 5 open-ended responses. The open-ended responses could be related to any of the five content areas, so it's important to study all of the topics covered in this course. You will need a score of 220 or higher on one of the four STE exams to qualify for graduation.

12 Lessons in Chapter 16: MCAS STE Biology: Ecology
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
How Birth, Immigration, Emigration & Death Affect Populations

1. How Birth, Immigration, Emigration & Death Affect Populations

Populations change based on the births, deaths, immigrations, and emigrations that occur within the group. These additions and subtractions all affect population size, but do so in different ways.

Natural & Human Disturbances that Affect an Ecosystem

2. Natural & Human Disturbances that Affect an Ecosystem

Ecosystems are often forced to change in response to natural and human disturbances. In this lesson, we'll explore how these changes can be negative and positive.

What is a Food Web? - Definition & Explanation

3. What is a Food Web? - Definition & Explanation

This lesson will provide a definition of a food web, as well as describe its parts and discuss examples of different types. It will also explain the transfer of energy through a food web.

Food Chains, Trophic Levels and Energy Flow in an Ecosystem

4. Food Chains, Trophic Levels and Energy Flow in an Ecosystem

In this lesson, you'll learn about food chains, food webs, and the different roles that organisms play in an ecosystem. You'll also learn about how energy flows through an ecosystem.

Interspecific Competition, Competitive Exclusion & Niche Differentiation

5. Interspecific Competition, Competitive Exclusion & Niche Differentiation

What happens when two similar species that consume the same resources occupy the same space? Interspecific competition, that's what! Watch our video lesson to learn about the outcomes of this ecological battle.

Predator/Prey Interactions, Camouflage, Mimicry & Warning Coloration

6. Predator/Prey Interactions, Camouflage, Mimicry & Warning Coloration

You probably know that skunks can be quite stinky, bees sting and monarch butterflies are pretty, but do you know why? This lesson will introduce you to the reasons why some animals look or act the way they do and how these things relate to the predator/prey relationship.

Symbiotic Relationships: Mutualism, Commensalism & Parasitism

7. Symbiotic Relationships: Mutualism, Commensalism & Parasitism

If your cat or dog has ever had fleas, you've witnessed symbiosis in action. In this lesson, learn the many types of symbiosis in biology, and how these relationships can have a positive, negative, or neutral effect on the individual species.

Carrying Capacity, Migration & Dispersion

8. Carrying Capacity, Migration & Dispersion

Have you ever wondered why some types of birds fly south in the winter or why some animals form territories? Watch this video to learn about a species' maximum growth capabilities, the way its members group themselves and why they might migrate to new locations every year.

How Introduced and Invasive Species Alter Ecological Balance

9. How Introduced and Invasive Species Alter Ecological Balance

What happens to your block when a new neighbor moves in? Something changes, right? Now think about that on an ecological scale: what happens to an environment when a new SPECIES moves in?

Biogeochemical Cycling and the Phosphorus Cycle

10. Biogeochemical Cycling and the Phosphorus Cycle

In this video lesson, we'll take a look at how elements large and small use other elements to grow. This is achieved through cycles. We'll look at macronutrients, trace elements and the biogeochemical and phosphorous cycles.

The Nitrogen Cycle, Acid Rain and Fossil Fuels

11. The Nitrogen Cycle, Acid Rain and Fossil Fuels

Do you know the difference between nitrite and nitrate? Do you have any clue how all the nitrogen in the atmosphere becomes usable? If you can't answer these questions, then you need to watch this lesson on the nitrogen cycle.

The Carbon Cycle and Long-Term Carbon Storage

12. The Carbon Cycle and Long-Term Carbon Storage

All living organisms have a role in the carbon cycle. Do you know you understand how humans, animals and plants use carbon? This lesson will introduce you to the carbon cycle and explain how it functions on a global scale.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
Not Taken
Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
Not Taken

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Support