Biology Endorsement Competencies - Grades 5-12

The biology teacher candidate knows and understands scientific concepts and principles that are needed to advance student learning for all students as defined by the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) emphasizing the Disciplinary Core Ideas, the Science and Engineering Practices, and the Crosscutting Concepts. The biology teacher candidate can integrate the four core ideas that reflect the unifying principles in life sciences with Earth and space science and physical science. Competency requires evidence of integration of Science and Engineering Practices and Crosscutting Concepts with Disciplinary Core Ideas and will include examples that illustrate this integration when teaching.

1.0 Disciplinary Core Ideas

Understands and can explain the disciplinary core ideas of life science, especially as they relate to biology, and can guide the learning of others (for example, identify and respond to student ideas, use productive disciplinary representations, and know how ideas are organized and connected) in the following topics:

1.A From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes—understand how to teach how organisms live, grow, respond to their environment, and reproduce and the associated Disciplinary Core Ideas.

1.A.1 The structure of DNA determines the structure of proteins which carry out the essential functions of life through systems of specialized cells.

1.A.2 The hierarchical organization of interacting systems that provide specific functions within multicellular organisms.

1.A.3 Feedback mechanisms maintain homeostasis.

1.A.4 The role of cellular division (mitosis) and differentiation in producing and maintaining complex organisms.

1.A.5 The process of photosynthesis and how it transforms light energy into stored chemical energy.

1.A.6 Carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen from sugar molecules may combine with other elements to form amino acids and/or other large carbon-based molecules.

1.A.7 Cellular respiration is a chemical process whereby the bonds of food molecules and oxygen molecules are broken and the bonds in new compounds are formed resulting in a net transfer of energy.

1.A.8 Human anatomy and physiology and how the body is a system of interacting subsystems composed of groups of cells.

1.B Ecosystems:  Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics—understand how to teach how and why organisms interact with their environment and the effects of these interactions and the associated Disciplinary Core Ideas.

1.B.1 Factors that affect carrying capacity of ecosystems at different scales.

1.B.2 Factors affecting biodiversity and populations in ecosystems of different scales.

1.B.3 The cycling of matter and flow of energy in aerobic and anaerobic conditions.

1.B.4 The cycling of matter and flow of energy among organisms in an ecosystem.

1.B.5 Photosynthesis and cellular respiration in the cycling of carbon among the biosphere, atmosphere, hydrosphere, and geosphere.

1.B.6 Complex interactions in ecosystems maintain relatively consistent numbers and types of organisms in stable conditions, but changing conditions may result in a new ecosystem.

1.B.7 The impacts of human activities on the environment and biodiversity.

1.B.8 The role of group behavior on individual and species’ chances to survive and reproduce.

1.C Heredity: Inheritance and Variation of Traits—understand how to teach why individuals of the same species vary in how they look, function, and behave and the associated Disciplinary Core Ideas.

1.C.1 The role of DNA and chromosomes in coding the instructions for characteristic traits passed from parents to offspring.

1.C.2 Inheritable genetic variations may result from new genetic combinations through meiosis, viable errors occurring during replication, and/or mutations caused by environmental factors.

1.C.3 Variation and distribution of expressed traits in a population.

1.D Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity—understand how to teach how there can be many similarities among organisms yet many different kinds of plants, animals, and microorganisms as well as how biodiversity affects humans and the associated Disciplinary Core Ideas.

1.D.1 Common ancestry and biological evolution are supported by multiple lines of empirical evidence.

1.D.2 The process of evolution primarily results from four factors; (1) the potential for a species to increase in number, (2) the heritable genetic variation of individuals in a species due to mutation and sexual reproduction, (3) competition for limited resources, and (4) the proliferation of those organisms that are better able to survive and reproduce in the environment.

1.D.3 Organisms with an advantageous heritable trait tend to increase in proportion to organisms lacking this trait.

1.D.4 Natural selection leads to adaptation of populations.

1.D.5 Changes in environmental conditions may result in increases in the number of individuals of some species, the emergence of new species over time, and the extinction of other species.

1.D.6 Mitigate adverse impacts of human activity on biodiversity.

1.E Understand and can explain the disciplinary core ideas of and links between engineering, technology, and application of science includes the following competencies:

1.E.1 The design process—engineers’ basic approach to problem solving—involves many different practices.

1.E.2 These practices include problem definition, model development and use, investigation, analysis and interpretation of data, application of mathematics and computational thinking, and determination of solutions.

1.E.3 These engineering practices incorporate specialized knowledge about criteria and constraints, modeling and analysis, and optimization and trade-offs.

1.E.4 New insights from science often catalyze the emergence of new technologies and their applications, which are developed using engineering design.

1.E.5 New technologies can have profound effects on human society and the natural environment, and, in turn, society and environmental issues can impact technological innovations.

1.E.6 Systems can change significantly when new technologies are introduced, with both desired effects and unexpected outcomes.

1.F Understand and apply the learning progressions in Appendix E, Disciplinary Core Ideas and Appendix I,  Engineering Design in NGSS.

2.0 Science and Engineering Practices

2.A Understand and apply Science and Engineering Practices in NGSS.

2.A.1 Ask questions (for science) and define problems (for engineering).

2.A.2 Develop and use models.

2.A.3 Plan and carry out investigations.

2.A.4 Analyze and interpret data.

2.A.5 Use mathematics and computational thinking.

2.A.6 Construct explanations (for science) and design solutions (for engineering).

2.A.7 Engage in argument from evidence.

2.A.8 Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information.

2.B Have experience with and model the practices by which scientists and engineers develop and refine ideas.

2.C Understand and apply the progressions in Appendix F, Scientific and Engineering Practices in NGSS.

2.D Collaborate with other content-area experts and STEM professionals to solve real-world problems, to promote equitable opportunities (see Appendix D) for in-depth experiences, and to include different perspectives.

2.E Demonstrate the ability to guide the learning of others in applying biology concepts locally and generating awareness of STEM career pathways.

2. F Conduct limited but original research in biology.

3.0 Crosscutting Concepts

3.A Understands and can explain the disciplinary core ideas of life science, can guide the learning of others (for example, identify and respond to student ideas, use productive disciplinary representations, and know how ideas are organized and connected), and explain how the Crosscutting Concepts bridge disciplinary boundaries, uniting core ideas throughout the fields of science and engineering as described in Appendix G, Section 2, Crosscutting Concepts Matrix of the NGSS.

3.A.1 Patterns.

3.A.2 Cause and effect.

3.A.3 Scale, proportion, and quantities.

3.A.4 Systems and systems models.

3.A.5 Energy and matter; flows, cycles, and conservation.

3.A.6 Structure and function.

3.A.7 Stability and change.

3.B Have experience with and model the application of Crosscutting Concepts by which scientists and engineers develop and refine ideas.

3.C Understand and apply the progressions in Appendix G, Section 2, Crosscutting Concepts Matrix of the NGSS.

3.D Understand the nature of science, and be able to address student misconceptions, as described in Appendix H, Understanding the Scientific Enterprise: The Nature of Science in the NGSS.

4.0 Science-specific Instructional Methodology

4.A Incorporate instructional materials and teaching strategies to create a community of diverse student learners who can construct meaning from scientific experiences and possess a disposition for further inquiry and learning in Appendix D, All Standards, All Students in NGSS.

4.B Anticipate learner ideas in the planning of instruction, identify students’ specific prior knowledge and skills on which instruction can be built, monitor the development of student understanding, interpret student needs, develop responsive actions to meet these needs, and provide multiple opportunities for students to practice their learning.

4.C Integrate the Disciplinary Core Ideas, Crosscutting Concepts, and Science and Engineering Practices to immerse students in the manner in which scientific and engineering ideas are developed and refined.

4.C.1 Implement the Disciplinary Core Ideas in life science and engineering progressions in Appendix E, Disciplinary Core Ideas and Appendix I,  Engineering Design

4.C.2 Implement the Science and Engineering Practices in Appendix F

4.C.3 Implement the progressions of the Crosscutting Concepts across the grades in order to help students deepen their understanding of the Disciplinary Core Ideas and develop coherent and scientifically-based view of the world in Appendix G, Section 2, Crosscutting Concepts Matrix in NGSS.

4.C.4 Successful competency demonstrates integration of 4.C.1-3.

4.D Understand and be able to appropriately respond to potential safety hazards in different learning environments, e.g., laboratory, classroom, or field.

4.D.1 Establish and enforce laboratory safety (including storage and disposal of hazardous waste) in the science laboratory.

4.D.2 Understand preparation of laboratory reports and be able to operate biology laboratory equipment and prepare materials used in the biology laboratory.

4.D.3 Demonstrate responsible use and disposal of live organisms according to Washington State law.

4.E Demonstrate an understanding of the CCSS for Mathematics and align instruction in science with instruction that students receive in mathematics, examples of which are described in Appendix L, Connections to the CCSS for Mathematics in NGSS.

4.F Demonstrate an understanding of the CCSS for Literacy in Science and Technical Subjects and align instruction in science with instruction that students receive in English Language Arts, examples of which are described in Appendix M, Connections to the CCSS for Literacy in Science and Technical Subjects in NGSS.