Genetic mutations and variety produced by sexual reproduction allow for diversity within a given population. Many factors can cause a change in a gene over time. Mutations are important in how populations change over time because they result in changes to the gene pool.
The student will investigate and understand how populations change through time. Key concepts include a) evidence found in fossil records; b) how genetic variation, reproductive strategies, and environmental pressures impact the survival of populations; c) how natural selection leads to adaptations; d) emergence of new species; and e) scientific evidence and explanations for biological evolution.