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Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System

2012, Grade 8 Science and Technology/Engineering

  Question 21: Open-Response  
The diagram below represents 23 pairs of structures taken from the nucleus of a human body cell.
The 23 pairs of structures are ‘X’ shaped with varied lengths of the “arms”.
  1. Identify the structures shown in the diagram. 
  2. Identify the information that is contained within these structures.
  3. Describe how the structures from this cell would compare to the structures in the nucleus of another body cell from the same person.
  4. Explain why the structures are in pairs.

Scoring Guide and Sample Student Work
Select a score point in the table below to view the sample student response.

ScoreDescription
4 The response demonstrates a thorough understanding that hereditary information is contained in genes located in the chromosomes of each cell. The response correctly identifies chromosomes and the information that they contain, and clearly describes how they compare to the structures in the nucleus of another body cell from the same person. The response also clearly explains why chromosomes are in pairs.
4
3 The response demonstrates a general understanding that hereditary information is contained in genes located in the chromosomes of each cell.
2 The response demonstrates a limited understanding that hereditary information is contained in genes located in the chromosomes of each cell.
1 The response demonstrates a minimal understanding that hereditary information is contained in genes located in the chromosomes of each cell.
0 The response is incorrect or contains some correct work that is irrelevant to the skill or concept being measured.

Note: There are 2 sample student responses for Score Point 4.

Grade 8 Science and Technology/Engineering

Question 12: Physical Sciences
Question 21: Life Science

Return to the MCAS 2012 Student Work Directory



Last Updated: January 15, 2016
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