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Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System

2017, High School Biology

Download PDF Document  Question 23: Open-Response  
A food web is shown below.

Food Web: Hawk eats Bat and Mouse, Bat eats Beetle and Dragonfly, Mouse eats Beetle and X, Beetle eats X, Dragonfly eats Beetle, Owl eats Bat and Mouse, Raccoon eats Bat and Mouse.
An organism in the food web is labeled X.
  1. Identify and describe the ecological role of organism X in the food web.
  2. Identify the organism in the food web whose population size would likely increase the most if the bat became extinct. Explain your answer.
There are many types of relationships between organisms, including competitive and predator-prey relationships.
  1. Identify two organisms in the food web that have a competitive relationship. Explain your answer.
  2. Identify two organisms in the food web that have a predator-prey relationship. Explain your answer.

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 how relationships among organisms add to the complexity of biological communities. The response correctly identifies and clearly describes the ecological role of organism X in the food web. The response also correctly identifies the organism in the food web whose population size likely would increase the most if the bat became extinct and clearly explains the answer. The response correctly identifies two organisms in the food web that have a competitive relationship and clearly explains the answer. The response also correctly identifies two organisms in the food web that have a predator-prey relationship and clearly explains the answer.
4
3 The response demonstrates a general understanding of how relationships among organisms add to the complexity of biological communities.
2 The response demonstrates a limited understanding of how relationships among organisms add to the complexity of biological communities.
1 The response demonstrates a minimal understanding of how relationships among organisms add to the complexity of biological communities.
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.

High School Biology

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

Return to the MCAS 2017 Student Work Directory



Last Updated: June 4, 2015
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