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Ministry of Education.

Annotated exemplar: Biology

This annotated exemplar helps teachers to support the literacy and language learning of students in biology. To view other exemplars for history, mathematics and statistics, technology, and physical education click here.

The annotations are made under the headings of Structure, Ideas and Information, Audience and Purpose, Language, and Accuracy. Hover over each of these headings below and click to read the annotations. To increase the size of the text, use the Ctrl + keys on your keyboard.

Curriculum:  Level 7 - Living World

 Students will: explain how the interaction between ecological factors and natural selection leads to genetic changes within populations.

 Secondary literacy exemplars teaching and learning responses: these notes provide assistance in supporting students to develop their writing at this level.

About the exemplar

This example was sourced from a 2012 external assessment question: Achievement Standard 91157 Demonstrate understanding of genetic variation and change.

Exemplar annotation Biology Level 2 AS 91157 (PDF 293KB)

Task: Discuss this statement, considering the following points in your response:

  • What is meant by the terms: mutation and gene pool
  • Differences between somatic and gametic mutation
  • The factors that determine whether an allele enters the gene pool

"New Alleles - Mutations can result in the formation of new alleles, but not all new alleles enter the gene pool of a population." 

Teaching and learning in relation to literacy and language demands in writing

Students need to use writing to explain concepts, processes, and theories relevant to curriculum tasks.  They need to express increasingly sophisticated ideas and information, incorporate specialized vocabulary, and structure their responses according to purpose and audience.

Published on: 09 May 2016

Related links

Literacy in the Learning Areas: resources to support literacy learning in the context of each learning area.

Literacy in Secondary School Contexts:  Assists secondary teachers to incorporate subject area literacy teaching and learning into their programmes of work.

ESOL Online Teaching Strategies: Strategies to support English Language Learners.

Assessment Resource Bank (NZCER) - Language of science: specialised language

Assessment Resource Bank (NZCER) Science

Literacy Learning Progressions: describe the specific literacy and language knowledge, skills, and attitudes students require in order to meet the curriculum reading and writing demands.