Posted: September 18th, 2017
For your course project you are tasked with designing and carrying out a research project on enzymes of your own design using an online enzyme simulation (see Virtual Enzyme Catalysis Lab Student guide for directions). Almost all chemical reactions that occur in living organisms are catalyzed by enzymes. One enzyme may catalyze thousands of reactions every second. Many factors in a cell’s environment, like temperature, pH, concentration and salinity, affect the action of an enzyme. Changes in these conditions may change the shape of the enzyme making it useless. The purpose of this assignment is to help you plan and design an experiment investigating the factors that impact enzymes. After this assignment is complete you will be able to conduct your experiment, collect data and prepare for the experiment analysis.
Look through the Virtual lab student guides. Before performing an experiment or lab, you must design and plan what is going to be tested and how you are going to test it. You must be organized and be able to communicate your results effectively. This assignment is designed to help you organize your experiment design. Use what you have learned about the scientific method from your lab assignments to help you design an experiment on enzyme action. You will need to conduct some background research on enzyme action to help you design your experiment. The research will be used to help you write the introduction portion of your experiment paper.
An experiment is a research method in which you manipulate a variable or variables under very controlled conditions and examines whether any changes occur in response to the manipulation of the variable.
It is a cause and effect relationship
1. Identify the Independent Variable, Dependent Variable and Constants (5pts)
Independent Variable is the variable that is manipulated. It is the variable that you change on purpose. (The CAUSE) There are many variables that can change enzyme action. For the virtual experiment you must test both pH and enzyme concentration.
Dependent Variable is the variable that we measure in response to the manipulation of the independent variable. It is a measurable change. (The EFFECT)
Constants are all the other variables in the experiment that must remain the same so we can see what effect the independent variable has on the dependent variable.
The Control is used as a standard of comparison. The control is a level of the independent variable that has been changed the least or not at all.
2. Write a Title (5pts)
Use the following pattern when writing a title…
The Effect of the (Independent Variable) on the (Dependent Variable
3. Write a Testable Question (5pts)
Not all questions are testable!!
A testable question asks. . .
“What is the effect of the Independent Variable on the Dependent Variable?”
4. Write a Hypothesis (5pts)
A hypothesis is a prediction of the outcome of the lab. Your prediction is based on your understanding of the scientific concept.
It answers your testable question. Use the following pattern:
IF the (IV- how it is changing), then the DV- how you think it will change), BECAUSE (why do you think this is happening.
Example- If the IV increases, then the DV will decrease because….
5. Write your Procedures (10pts)
Procedures are a list of materials used in the experiment and the steps in performing the experimental part. Procedures are the recipe you follow in order to perform the experiment. Write these in order. It should be written in paragraph form, and using your own words. Do not simply copy and paste from the student lab guides. For the virtual method write the procedures as if you were carrying out the lab by hand.
Example: Add .5g of substrate to each test tube instead of click on .5 g of substrate and drag to each test tube.
6. Create your Data Table (5pts)
Data is recorded during the procedures. You need to create your data collection table for your experiment. Below is an example Data collection table. Create your own collection table using labels with the names of your variables and the correct units you are measuring.
Independent Variable (units) Dependent Variable (units)
Average Dependent Variable (units)
Trial 1 * Trial 2 * Trial 3*
For the virtual experiment you will not conduct repeated trials. The virtual experiment trials do not generate different numbers if you repeat them.
7. Background research with references in APA format (30 pts)
Summarize what is currently known about the question. Introduce a little of what you found and how you found it. Explain any ideas or techniques that are necessary for someone to understand your experiment. This information will be used to write the introduction of your lab report. The introduction is generally 1 page long so you should probably have around 3/4 of a page of background research using size 12 font and single spacing for this assignment (~ 400 words). You need to use APA format in text citations and references.
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