AP Biology Graphing Assignment
Temperatures were obtained in November in a fairly arid area of Nevada. At two different sites, temperature
readings were taken at a number of heights above and below the soil surface. One site was shaded by a juniper
(a plant) whereas the other was not.
Condition Height in cm from Temp. in Co - Temp in Co –
soil surface Beneath Forest Unshaded Field
Air 150 18 20
Air 90 18 21
Air 60 18 20
Air 30 18 21
Soil surface 0 16 33
Humus -6 12 19
Mineral -15 9 15
Mineral -30 7 12
Construct a line graph and plot the data
1. What is the independent variable?
2. What conclusion can be drawn from this data and graph?
3. Which condition showed the greatest difference between forest cover and unshaded areas?
A researcher interested in the disappearance of fallen leaves in a deciduous forest carried out a field experiment
that lasted nearly a year. She collected all the leaves from 100 plots scattered throughout the forest. She
measured the amount of leaves present in November, May and August. The percentages reflect the number of
leaves found, using the November values as 100 percent. Complete the table by calculating the missing
Collection Ash Beech Elm Hazel Oak Willow
November 4271g 3220g 3481g 1723g 5317g 3430g
100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
May 2431g 3190g 1739g 501g 4401g 1201g
57% 99% % % 83% 35%
August 1376g 2285g 35g 62g 1759g 4g
32% 71% % % 33% 0.1%
Construct a line graph for the ash and elm leaves
1. Which leaves showed the greatest change from Nov to May?
2. What possible explanation could you give for the difference in the percentage of Beech and Willow leaves remaining?
3. At what rate did the elm leaves disappear?
A species of insect has been accidentally introduced from Asia into the US. The success of this organism
depends on its ability to find a suitable habitat. The larval stage is very sensitive to changes in temperature,
humidity and light intensity. Exposure to situations outside the tolerance limits results in a high mortality
(death) rate. Study the data table below.
Temp. Mortality Relative Mortality Light Mortality
(oC) (%) Humidity(%) (%) intensity (fc) (%)
15 100 100 80 300 0
16 80 90 10 400 0
17 30 80 0 600 10
18 10 70 0 800 15
19 0 60 0 1000 20
20 0 50 50 1200 20
21 0 40 70 1400 90
22 0 30 90 1600 95
23 20 20 100 1800 100
24 80 10 100 2000 100
25 100 0 100
On the graphs, plot line graphs for the effects of temperature and humidity of mortality rates.
1. Give your best possible explanation of the environment that this insect probably lived in Asia.
2. At what temperature did the insect thrive best at? What humidity?
3. Would the organism survive in an environment such as 18◦ C, 20 % humidity, and 200 foot candles? Why or why
A team of scientists wanted to test the effects of temperature on the germination rate of pinto beans. They placed three
sets of 100 pinto bean seeds in temperature controlled chambers: Chamber A was set at 15o C, chamber B at 20oC, and
chamber C at 25oC. Their results are shown in Table 4 below:
Germination Rates of Pinto Beans
% Germination % Germination % Germination
(15o C) (20o C) (25o C)
0 0 0 0
2 2 10 10
4 10 30 50
6 20 40 80
8 20 60 90
10 35 70 90
Construct a line graph from the above data on one set of axes.
1. What possible conclusion could be made from this data and graph?
2. Give a biological reason of why there was a higher germination rate a 25 degrees compared to 15 degrees.
3. What is germination?
General Graphing Rules
A graph shows the information from the table in visual form that is easily interpreted. Graph titles will be
similar to table titles. Show units on axes, title and use a key if there are multiple lines. Range must include
smallest and largest numbers on the axis, scale should be uniform (unless you’re using a log scale).
Types of graphs:
Bar: use to compare things
Line: use to show continuous change (often over time)
For line graphs, you will either connect your data points or make a best-fit line
Each Graph should include
1: MAIN TITLE Describes what the graph is about (possibly in a complete sentence). It usually describes a
relationship or correlation between the independent and dependent variables. Place the MAIN TITLE above the
2: INDEPENDENT VARIABLE or the factor the experimenter controls/changes. Include units if applicable.
[Graph on the x-axis.]
3: DEPENDENT VARIABLE or the factor that responds to changes in the independent variable. What you
measure and record. Include units if applicable.
[Graph the data on y-axis.]
A good graph can be understood without any additional information!