Living Environment August 2011 Question Answer Keys
The University of the State of New York
Regents High School Examination
Thursday, August 18, 2011 — 12:30 to 3:30 p.m., only
Student Name ____________________________________________________________
School Name ______________________________________________________________
Directions (1–30): For each statement or question, record on the separate answer sheet the number of the word or expression that, of those given, best completes the statement or answers the question.
1. The ability to grow in size is a characteristic of living organisms. Although an icicle may grow in size over time, it is considered nonliving because there is
- (1) an increase in matter, but no increase in the number of icicles
- (2) an interaction between the icicle and the environment
- (3) no way for the icicle to move away from heat
- (4) no metabolic activity present
2. The diagram below represents a woodpecker finch.
This bird may best be described as
- (1) a decomposer that most likely feeds on nectar (a sugary liquid) from flowers
- (2) a heterotroph that may eat insects and is more closely related to a robin than to an earthworm
- (3) a scavenger that feeds on animals and reproduces asexually
- (4) an autotroph that probes tree bark for insects and is pathogenic
3. Which cell structure is correctly paired with its primary function?
- (1) ribosome–protein synthesis
- (2) mitochondrion–movement
- (3) vacuole–cell division
- (4) nucleus–storage of nutrients
4. The diagram below represents many species of plants and animals and their surroundings.
The diagram best represents
- (1) a population
- (2) a community
- (3) an ecosystem
- (4) the biosphere
5. The cytoplasm in a cell carries out a function similar to a function of which human system?
- (1) respiratory system
- (2) reproductive system
- (3) circulatory system
- (4) nervous system
6. Which statement best describes a human chromosome?
- (1) It is made of amino acid subunits that form genes.
- (2) It contains genes that may code for the production of enzymes.
- (3) It is normally passed to the next generation through a placenta.
- (4) It varies in function from one generation to the next.
7. Four different segments of a DNA molecule are represented below
Segment 1 Segment 2 Segment 3 Segment 4
T–A–G–G–C G–G–T–G–A G–A–T–T–A C–A–A–T–G
A–T–C–C–G C–C–A–C–T C–C–A–A–T G–T–T–A–C
There is an error in the DNA molecule in
- (1) segment 1, only
- (2) segment 3, only
- (3) segments 2 and 3
- (4) segments 2 and 4
8. Some human structures and their functions are listed below.
In a single-celled organism such as an ameba, all these functions can be performed by the
- (1) nucleus
- (2) ribosomes
- (3) mitochondria
- (4) cell membrane
9. The diagram below can be used to illustrate cellular changes
Which row of terms in the chart below best completes the diagram?
10. A scientist wants to change the DNA of a sexually reproducing organism and have the new DNA present in every cell of the organism. In order to do this after fertilization, she would change the DNA in the
- (1) zygote
- (2) placenta
- (3) testes of the father
- (4) ovaries of the mother
11. If the same antibiotic is used too many times, it can become less effective against a certain type of bacteria. This observation is best explained by the
- (1) presence of pathogens in antibiotics
- (2) production of antibiotics by white blood cells
- (3) replication of viruses that attack bacteria
- (4) survival and reproduction of unaffected bacteria
12. Which group would most likely have the greatest survival success during a long period of environmental changes?
- (1) a small population of rabbits living in a field of grass
- (2) a large population of red ants living in a forest
- (3) an endangered population of polar bears living near an iceberg
- (4) one species of bird that nests only in sugar maple trees
13. When changes occur in the genes of sex cells, these changes
- (1) lead to mutations in the parent organism
- (2) are always harmful to the offspring
- (3) can be the basis for evolutionary change
- (4) only affect asexually reproducing organisms
14. Asexual reproduction produces offspring that each contain
- (1) genetic information from one parent
- (2) genetic information from two parents
- (3) less genetic information than either parent
- (4) a unique combination of genetic information
15. The diagram below represents part of a human reproductive system.
One of the functions of this part of the system is to
- (1) supply essential nutrients to the offspring in the form of milk
- (2) provide nutritional support for the embryo
- (3) provide a structure that allows the mixing of maternal and fetal blood
- (4) produce specialized proteins used in the production and release of sperm
16. Which row in the chart below indicates the correct process for each event indicated?
17. The drinking of alcoholic beverages by a pregnant woman is harmful to the development of her fetus. This is most damaging early in a pregnancy because during this time
- (1) the lungs of the fetus become functional
- (2) alcohol can easily enter the mouth of the fetus
- (3) many of the essential organs of the fetus are forming
- (4) the fetus cannot excrete wastes
18. Which substance is an inorganic molecule?
- (1) starch
- (2) DNA
- (3) water
- (4) fat
19. The enzyme amylase will affect the breakdown of carbohydrates, but it will not affect the breakdown of proteins. The ability of an enzyme molecule to interact with specific molecules is most directly determined by the
- (1) shapes of the molecules involved
- (2) number of molecules involved
- (3) sequence of bases present in ATP
- (4) amount of glucose present in the cell
20. The disease known as malaria may result in a fever, a decrease in red blood cells, and an enlarged liver and spleen. These symptoms are evidence of
- (1) a disruption of homeostasis
- (2) a decrease in allergic reactions
- (3) an increased number of cell organelles
- (4) hormone destruction
21. An activity that occurs in the human body is shown below.
This activity helps to
- (1) provide protection against pathogens
- (2) produce antibiotics to control disease
- (3) eliminate harmful gene alterations
- (4) regulate production of ATP by the cell
22. Sweating is a process that helps cool the body during strenuous exercise. This is an example of
- (1) recycling of gases
- (2) cellular respiration
- (3) gene malfunction
- (4) a feedback mechanism
23. A population of animals is permanently split by a natural barrier into two separate populations in different environments. What will likely result after a long period of time?
- (1) The evolution of the two populations will be identical.
- (2) The production of variations will stop in the two populations.
- (3) The two populations will evolve into separate species.
- (4) Autotrophic nutrition will replace heterotrophic nutrition in the two populations.
24. Which consequence could most likely be associated with a decrease in biodiversity in an area?
- (1) More species would be better able to survive a major environmental change.
- (2) The ecosystems in the area would become more stable.
- (3) The amount of genetic information in the species of the area would increase.
- (4) Some sources of future foods or medications would be lost.
25. The release of products of combustion into the air often causes the formation of ozone near the surface of Earth. This ground-level ozone damages plants and affects their ability to absorb carbon dioxide. The doubling of ground-level ozone since 1850 is most likely due to
- (1) the chemical composition of the upper atmosphere
- (2) emissions from vehicles and industrial processes
- (3) the extinction of certain animal species
- (4) a greater use of nuclear fuel
26. After a fire destroys a forest, the area will most likely
- (1) remain bare land indefinitely
- (2) develop into a desert area
- (3) develop into an entirely different type of forest after hundreds of years
- (4) recover through gradual changes back to a point of long-term stability
27. New fuels are being produced by converting corn and grasses into compounds containing alcohols that can be broken down for energy in various engines. The purpose of this research is to
- (1) reduce the use of finite resources
- (2) increase the rate of air pollution
- (3) reduce the rate of homeostasis in organisms
- (4) cause a loss of biodiversity in the rain forests
28. The presence of wastes, such as plastic bags and motor oil, in lakes and streams miles away from developed areas suggests that.
- (1) ecosystems are interconnected and human action can alter ecosystem equilibrium
- (2) recycling programs have failed to conserve biotic resources
- (3) natural processes can alter ecosystem stability
- (4) direct harvesting practices have led to irreversible destruction of ecosystems
29. A new bird species is introduced to control an insect pest. A negative consequence of this action is that the new bird species may
- (1) limit the population of the pest insect
- (2) consume beneficial insects
- (3) disrupt mineral availability in the ecosystem
- (4) cause an increase of pesticide-resistant insects
30. Most scientists recommend reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Less carbon dioxide in the atmosphere would be expected to
- (1) reduce the rate of global warming
- (2) increase damage caused by acid rain
- (3) decrease the number of biotic factors in ecosystems
- (4) reduce destruction of the ozone layer
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