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Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System

2013, High School Biology

  Question 23: Open-Response  
Catalase is an enzyme that protects cells from damage by helping convert the toxin hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) into water (H2O) and oxygen (O2). A student is investigating how different pH values and different temperatures affect catalase activity. The table below shows the student’s data.
Catalase Experiment Data
 
Test
Tube
Amount of
Catalase
(drops)
Amount of
Hydrogen
Peroxide
(mL)
pH of
Solution
Temperature
of Solution
(°C)
Relative Rate
of Reaction
110315 no reaction
2103130 no reaction
3103160 no reaction
410335 very slow reaction
5103330 slow reaction
6103360 no reaction
710375 slow reaction
8103730 rapid reaction
9103760 no reaction
  1. Identify the test tube that most likely has physical conditions similar to the conditions in human cells. Explain your answer.
  2. Describe how catalase activity changes as pH decreases. Use data from the table to support your answer.
  3. Describe how catalase activity changes as temperature increases. Use data from the table to support your answer.
  4. Explain why temperature affects catalase activity in the way you described in part (c).

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 of the role of enzymes and of factors, such as pH and temperature, that have an effect on enzymes. The response correctly identifies the test tube that most likely has physical conditions similar to the conditions in human cells and clearly explains the answer. The response clearly describes how catalase activity changes as pH decreases and as temperature increases, and uses data to support the answers. The response also clearly explains why temperature has this effect on catalase activity.
4
3
The response demonstrates a general understanding of the role of enzymes and of factors, such as pH and temperature, that have an effect on enzymes.
2
The response demonstrates a limited understanding of the role of enzymes and of factors, such as pH and temperature, that have an effect on enzymes.
1
The response demonstrates a minimal understanding of the role of enzymes and of factors, such as pH and temperature, that have an effect on enzymes.
0 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.

High School Biology

Question 12: Evolution and Biodiversity
Question 23: Biochemistry and Cell Biology
Question 32: Anatomy and Physiology
Question 44: Genetics
Question 45: Ecology

Return to the MCAS 2013 Student Work Directory



Last Updated: November 17, 2017
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