Advantages of using scientific names when identifying organisms. - Essay Prowess

Advantages of using scientific names when identifying organisms.


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Science Assignment

  1. Discuss at least two advantages of using scientific names when identifying organisms.

In the 18th Century, a Swedish scientist came up with a hierarchical model for the identification and classification of living organisms known as taxonomy (Billiet and Burchill). Taxonomy uses the Latin language which is the internationally accepted as the scientific language. This is crucial towards the understanding of scientific literature and more so enhances the ease with which scientists from any part of the world can accurately identify, classify and communicate with each other with regard to living organisms. Secondly, taxonomy employs binomial nomenclature in which each organism is named through the combination of two Latin terms. The terms used are unique and ensure that no two organisms in this vastly bio-diverse Earth can have the same names.

  1. Any set of objects can be classified. Ten trees are listed below. Devise a dichotomous identification scheme for these trees that will (a) show their relationship to one another and (b) allow a person to identify the tree when shown the tree and your identification system.
Evergreen Deciduous
Needle Leaves Needle Leaves Compound leaves Simple leaves
Needles in bunches of five Needles single and angled Needles single and flat Needles in bunches of two Needles clustered on short branch lets Apposite branching Alternate branching Pointed lobes Rounded lobes
        Apposite branching Alternate branching Alternate branching
White pine                  
                Red oak  
              Sugar maple    
      Red pine            
                  White oak



  1. Explain how the garden bean and the locust tree are in the same family.

The garden bean (or common bean) and the locust tree (or the locust tree bean) belong to the same family. The scientific name for the common bean is Phaseolus vulgaris while the scientific name for the locust tree is Parkia biglobosa. These two species belong to the Leguminosae or Fabaceae family or the legume or bean family. It is a family of flowering herbaceous plants, shrubs and trees. The two species have similarities in their leaves which are compound and stipulated, their fruit which are pods and their seeds which are dicotyledonous (Billiet and Burchill).

  1. Consider the following hypothesis: “Coffee increases plant growth.” How would you design an experiment to test this hypothesis?

For this experiment, one will require two flower pots, fertile soil, common bean seeds, coffee, a watering can and water. This experiment should be set up in room with sufficient natural light. Five beans should be planted in each of the two pots and sufficient water added. Five days later, after the seeds have germinated into plants, coffee should be added into one pot while leaving the other free from any coffee. After another five days, the difference in the development of plants in both pots is observed and findings tabulated and a conclusion drawn.

  1. What are the characteristics of a living organism versus a nonliving object?

Biology is the scientific study of living things. Living things generally exhibit seven similar characteristics (Billiet and Burchill). Living things feed, that is, they take in substances from their surrounding environment so as to get energy and grow. Living things exhibit voluntary movement either externally as in animals or internally as in plants. Respiration which is the exchange of gases between living things and environment occurs in all living organisms. Living organisms remove waste from their bodies which are a product of their internal metabolic processes in a process referred to as excretion. Living things exhibit growth and react to any changes in the environment which may positively or negatively influence their growth. All living things reproduce, that is produce young ones which grow into plants or animals with the same characteristics as their parent plants or animals. Nonliving things on the other hand do not exhibit any of these traits.

  1. Describe the differences between carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins

Animals are living things which need carbohydrates, lipids and proteins which are organic compounds to grow (Billiet and Burchill). However, these three groups of compounds have different functions in the growth and development of living things. Lipids are utilized by the cells of animals for storing energy as well as building tissue for growth and cellular repair. Lipids are grouped as fats, steroids, oils and phospholipids which are insoluble in water.

Carbohydrates are used by animals to provide energy for carrying out functions such as movement and reproduction. They are made up of complex and simple sugars. These include monosaccharides, disaccharides and polysaccharides and are all necessary for energy production and structural growth in living organisms.

Proteins are complex compounds made of amino acids which are very important to the structural growth of animals.

Works cited

Billiet, Paul and Burchill, Shirley.  Living and Non-living Things. 2014. Web. <>. 2.06.2014.