Hardy Weinberg, Population Genetics Lab Simulation

Amy Brown Science
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  1. This "Population Genetics Complete Unit Bundle" includes everything you need to teach a unit on "The Evolution of Populations" to your life science or biology students. Many of the resources are available in BOTH printable and digital formats. The bundle contains a 94-slide PowerPoint presentation,
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In this lab simulation, students will learn how the Hardy-Weinberg Principle is used to detect changes in the gene pool, and how changes in the gene pool lead to evolution. Students in the classroom will mimic a breeding population of individuals. Students will “mate” using allele cards to show the outcome of genotypes and phenotypes in future generations.

Purpose of the Lab:

  • To simulate how changes in the gene pool might occur by using the class as a breeding population of individuals.
  • To observe how the Hardy-Weinberg equation is used to detect changes in allele frequencies in a population.

Materials List:

  • PTC test papers
  • Calculator
  • Allele cards (Included)
  • Coins
  • Pencil and paper

What will the students be doing?

  • In this lab simulation, the students in the classroom will mimic a breeding population of individuals. Students will “mate” using allele cards (included) to show the outcome of genotypes and phenotypes in future generations.
  • Students will learn how changes in the gene pool result in evolution.
  • Students will learn how to use the Hardy-Weinberg equation to determine the frequency of alleles in a population.
  • Students will make data tables, compile class data, work out the math, and answer a series of critical thinking questions at the conclusion of the lab.
  • Lots of Hardy-Weinberg Practice Problems!

What is included in this product?

  • 12-Page EDITABLE Student Handout that is ready to be printed and passed out to your students. Students can write on the handouts or use their own notebook paper.
  • Allele Cards used in lab simulation
  • Complete instructions.
  • 12-Page Teacher Guide containing tips, tricks, and suggestions.
  • Complete Answer Key and Solutions to all problems.
  • Everything you need for the successful completion of this lab.

If you teach the Hardy-Weinberg Principle during your unit on Evolution, this lab will ensure that your students understand:

  • The basic assumptions of the Hardy-Weinberg Principle
  • How changes in the gene pool result in evolution.
  • How to use the Hardy-Weinberg equation to determine the frequency of alleles in a population.

Students will carry out four different simulations:

  • Determining the Frequency of a Trait in a Population
  • Testing the Hardy-Weinberg Principle
  • Testing the Hardy-Weinberg Principle for Selection Pressure
  • The Heterozygote Advantage

This simulation lab activity is appropriate for biology students in grades 9 - 12.

Related products include:

Population Genetics and Speciation PowerPoint and Notes

Hardy-Weinberg Practice Problems

Population Genetics, Hardy-Weinberg, and Speciation Task Cards

Evolution Lab: Variation in a Population

Population Genetics Crossword Puzzle

Population Genetics, Hardy-Weinberg, and Speciation: Set of 3 Homework Assignments

Evolution of Populations: Set of 3 Quizzes

The Evolution of Populations (Population Genetics) Unit Text

Genetics: A Complete Unit Plan of Products

Evolution and Classification: Warm Ups, Bell Ringers and Interactive Notebooks

Darwin's Theory of Evolution PowerPoint and Notes

Lab: The Hardy Weinberg Equation

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Total Pages
24 pages (12 pages for student, 12 pages for teacher)
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
2 hours
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Apply concepts of statistics and probability to support explanations that organisms with an advantageous heritable trait tend to increase in proportion to organisms lacking this trait. Emphasis is on analyzing shifts in numerical distribution of traits and using these shifts as evidence to support explanations. Assessment is limited to basic statistical and graphical analysis. Assessment does not include allele frequency calculations.
Construct an explanation based on evidence that the process of evolution primarily results from four factors: (1) the potential for a species to increase in number, (2) the heritable genetic variation of individuals in a species due to mutation and sexual reproduction, (3) competition for limited resources, and (4) the proliferation of those organisms that are better able to survive and reproduce in the environment. Emphasis is on using evidence to explain the influence each of the four factors has on number of organisms, behaviors, morphology, or physiology in terms of ability to compete for limited resources and subsequent survival of individuals and adaptation of species. Examples of evidence could include mathematical models such as simple distribution graphs and proportional reasoning. Assessment does not include other mechanisms of evolution, such as genetic drift, gene flow through migration, and co-evolution.
Follow precisely a complex multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks; analyze the specific results based on explanations in the text.
Translate quantitative or technical information expressed in words in a text into visual form (e.g., a table or chart) and translate information expressed visually or mathematically (e.g., in an equation) into words.
Analyze the structure of the relationships among concepts in a text, including relationships among key terms (e.g., force, friction, reaction force, energy).


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