AP Env. Science A Course Resources
Module 6: Aquatic Biomes and Ecology
Aquatic Biomes Study Guide
ASSIGNMENT RESOURCES AND TIPS
LAB: Water Quality
- The handout for this assignment is on page 3 of the module.
- Be sure to read the lab completely before beginning your investigation. You will need to have an adult present when you do this lab.
- Water Quality Lab Walkthrough Video
- Here is the Macroinvertebrate Field Guide
- Data Tables in Word Doc
- Q-Value Charts
- The materials for testing water quality should have come in your materials from GAVS.
- This site (https://nces.ed.gov/nceskids/createagraph/default.aspx) is a great resource for creating a graph. Excel is also a popular choice. This VIDEO shows you how to create a graph with Excel.
- This lab requires a lab report, so you will need to include all sections of a lab report in your submission.
- Q: I am trying to determine the WQI on my data table for the Water Quality Lab, but something just doesn't seem right. The instructions in the procedure say to divide Sum C by Sum D to get the WQI. My Sum C is .58 and my Sum D is 25.6. When I do .58/25.6, I get a decimal number, which doesn't seem to make sense with the WQI value chart. Any suggestions?
- A: I'm looking at the data table for the lab and I have a couple questions:
Are you sure your data is in the units specified in the data table? If not, you'll need to convert them to the correct units otherwise the Sum D will not add up correctly. This is very important.
The next thing....I remember you saying that you were going to test the water at a pond on your school campus. Is this a recreational pond or more of a retention pond? If it is a retention pond, it is highly likely that it will have low DO, and high nitrates and phosphates. In other words, it will be a site with poor water quality.
I've looked online at other water quality labs and student data and your Sum D of 25.6 is not completely unreasonable. These same data/labs also used similar Sum C values and your lab, so I'm thinking the second scenario is most likely - that the pond you tested has poor water quality.
Q: I'm not quite sure what to do for the "Temperature change test". Which two temperatures am I supposed to compare?
A: You can test the temperature at different levels of your body of water - maybe the bottom and the top, or you can test the water in the morning and then maybe again in the afternoon. We are just looking at this variable to see if the water temperature changes a lot in this body of water, because that might indicate that organisms may struggle to survive in that area because of the wide swings in temperature.
This lab is just an approximation of what actual water quality scientists might do and gives us a little more familiarity with the different measures of water quality because they sometimes mention these tests on the AP exam.
- Q; My test kit did not come with a DO test. What should I do?
- A: Just write in your lab report that you did not receive that test.
DISCUSSION: How much water do I use?
- Use this RUBRIC to help you write a discussion posting that will earn full points.
- Make sure when you respond to your classmates that you post AT LEAST a 4 sentence response. "I agree with..." or "I disagree with..." is not enough to earn full points for a response. You must say why you agree or disagree and back up your reasoning.
FRQ: Aquatic Biomes
- To receive full credit for the free response question, you will need to show all steps necessary to explain how the answer was found.
- The College Board used to offer 11 possible points for each FRQ, but a student can never earn more than 10 points on an FRQ. So your FRQs will be graded out of 10 points.
- Watch these videos for help answering FRQs: FRQ Tips and Tricks Part 1, FRQ Tips and Tricks Part 2
- FRQs may NOT be resubmitted for a higher grade.
TEST: Aquatic Biomes and Ecology
- Do not begin your test until you have completed all self-assessments, assignments, and the review items and feel confident in your understanding of this material.