Academic standards list

Environmental Science — Science (2009-2018)


Academic standards define the expectations for knowledge and skills that students are to learn in a subject by a certain age or at the end of a school grade level. This page contains a list of standards for a specific content area, grade level, and/or course. The list of standards may be structured using categories and sub-categories.

Embedded Inquiry

Standard INQ — Embedded Inquiry
Science is a relentless quest for understanding how the natural world works. All of science is driven by the premise that the world is capable of being understood. Yet, scientists believe that currently accepted explanations of natural phenomena or events are never perfect or fully complete and are always amenable to revision in light of new scientific evidence. Each scientific discipline uses its distinctive tools and techniques to investigate phenomena associated with the physical, geological, or living worlds. All rely upon theories from which the development of hypotheses emerge, the collection of data, and the interpretation of evidence as the foundation for reaching logical conclusions and making reasoned predictions.Conceptual StrandUnderstandings about scientific inquiry and the ability to conduct inquiry are essential for living in the 21st century.Guiding QuestionWhat tools, skills, knowledge, and dispositions are needed to conduct scientific inquiry?
Course Level Expectation
Recognize that science is a progressive endeavor that reevaluates and extends what is already accepted.
Design and conduct scientific investigations to explore new phenomena, verify previous results, test how well a theory predicts, and compare opposing theories.
Use appropriate tools and technology to collect precise and accurate data.
Apply qualitative and quantitative measures to analyze data and draw conclusions that are free of bias.
Compare experimental evidence and conclusions with those drawn by others about the same testable question.
Communicate and defend scientific findings.

Embedded Technology/Engineering

Standard T/E — Embedded Technology/Engineering
Scientific inquiry is fueled by the desire to understand the natural world; technological design is driven by the need to meet human needs and solve human problems. Technology exerts a more direct effect on society than science because it is focused on solving human problems, helping humans to adapt to changes, and fulfilling goals and aspirations. The engineering design cycle describes the worklives of practicing engineers. The design cycle describes a series of activities that includes a background research, problem identification, feasibility analysis, selection of design criteria, prototype development, planning and design, production and product evaluation. Because there are as many variations of this model, practicing engineers do not adhere to a rigid step-by-step interpretation of this design cycle.Conceptual StrandSociety benefits when engineers apply scientific discoveries to design materials and processes that develop into enabling technologies.Guiding QuestionHow do science concepts, engineering skills, and applications of technology improve the quality of life?
Course Level Expectation
Explore the impact of technology on social, political, and economic systems.
Differentiate among elements of the engineering design cycle: design constraints, model building, testing, evaluating, modifying, and retesting.
Explain the relationship between the properties of a material and the use of the material in the application of a technology.
Describe the dynamic interplay among science, technology, and engineering within living, earth-space, and physical systems.

Earth System

Standard 1 — Earth System
Conceptual StrandAbiotic factors exert a profound influence on the global ecosystem.Guiding QuestionHow do abiotic factors sustain life on earth?
Course Level Expectation
Explain how earths position in the solar system creates global climate patterns.
Use the theory of plate tectonics to explain the occurrence of earthquakes, volcanoes, and tsunamis.
Explain the rock cycle and its association with soil formation.
Relate the atmosphere, hydrosphere and lithosphere to the biosphere.

The Living World

Standard 2 — The Living World
Conceptual StrandThe global ecosystem involves interactions between biotic and abiotic factors.Guiding QuestionHow do living things interact with each other and the abiotic components of the environment?
Course Level Expectation
Employ the first and second laws of thermodynamics to explain energy flow within ecosystems.
Discuss the roles of biodiversity and coevolution in ecosystems.
Using temperature, latitude and altitude, infer the types of animal and plant life found in each of earths major biomes.
Distinguish between primary and secondary biological succession using common plants and animals.
Explain biogeochemical cycling in ecosystems.

Human Population

Standard 3 — Human Population
Conceptual StrandWorldwide, human population is growing exponentially.Guiding QuestionWhat factors affect human population growth?
Course Level Expectation
Demonstrate how human population growth over time has been affected by improved food production, healthcare, sanitation and industrial advances.
Research demographics and economic status of different countries to infer ecological and economic consequences of human population growth.
Explain how social and economic factors affect the fertility rate and life expectancy of the human population.

Water and Land Resources

Standard 4 — Water and Land Resources
Conceptual StrandHumans use natural resources in a variety of ways.Guiding QuestionHow can natural resources be sustainably managed for the benefit of all living things?
Course Level Expectation
Examine common resource use practices in agriculture, forestry, urban/suburban development, mining, and fishing.
Explore best management practices related to water and soil resources.
Compare and contrast preservation and conservation.
Evaluate the impact of human activities on natural resources.

Energy Resources and Consumption

Standard 5 — Energy Resources and Consumption
Conceptual StrandHumans use both renewable and nonrenewable sources of energy.Guiding QuestionWhat are the environmental consequences of energy use?
Course Level Expectation
Compare and contrast various energy resources.
Analyze the past and present use of energy resources.
Predict future trends in energy resource use.

Waste Production and Pollution

Standard 6 — Waste Production and Pollution
Conceptual StrandMany human activities result in pollution.Guiding QuestionHow can we mimic nature to provide goods and services for the growing human population in ways that do not pollute the environment?
Course Level Expectation
Investigate the causes, environmental effects, and methods for controlling/preventing land, air and water pollution.
Apply case studies to relate land, air, and water pollution to human health issues.
Explore methods used for remediation of land, air and water pollution.
Research local and national environmental legislation related to protecting land, air and water resources.
Research local and state methods used for solid waste reduction, recycling and disposal; compare them to methods used in other developed countries.

Global Change And Civic Responsibility

Standard 7 — Global Change And Civic Responsibility
Conceptual StrandHuman interaction with the local environment has global consequences.Guiding QuestionHow do the decisions of one generation create opportunities and impose limitations for future generations?
Course Level Expectation
Explain how consumer choices in Tennessee impact jobs, resources, pollution and waste here and around the world.
Compare and contrast methods used by various governments to protect biodiversity.
Explain how human activity is related to ozone depletion and climate change.
Summarize the scientific explanation for average global temperature increase.
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