GACE Biology

The Biology assessment, offered as part of the Georgia Assessments for the Certification of Educators, is divided into two tests.

The first test consists of 80 selected-response questions. The content areas covered by the first test are cell structure, cell function, genetics, and evolution. Some of the topics covered by the cell structure and function subarea are: the basic biochemistry and metabolism of living organisms, the structure and function of cells, and the mechanisms of basic cellular processes. Some of the topics covered by the genetics and evolution subarea are: the mechanisms of molecular biology, the predictions of transmission genetics, mechanisms of evolution as a consequence of genetic variation, and factors affecting evolution.

The second test consists of 80 selected-response questions. The content areas covered by the second test are: scientific inquiry, processes, technology, and society; organismal biology, and ecology. The topics covered by the scientific inquiry, processes, technology, and society subarea are: the nature of scientific inquiry and processes, including the collection and analysis of data; and the relationship of science and technology to society and the environment. The topics covered by the organismal biology subarea are: characteristics contributing to the diversity of life, including classification systems; the anatomy and physiology of major animal phyla, and the anatomy and physiology of major plant phyla. The topics covered by the ecology subarea are: biosphere organization and factors affecting organism interactions and population size; the characteristics of biomes, energy flow in ecosystems, and major biogeochemical cycles; and interactions among ecosystems and effects of their disruption by natural disturbances or humans.

The examination must be completed within four hours. Test-takers will receive performance indices indicating their success in each subarea of the examination. Scores will be available approximately a month after the date of the examination; unofficial results are posted on the internet, and an official score report is mailed to the test-taker, the Professional Standards Commission, and the institution specified by the test-taker during registration.

GACE Biology Practice Questions

1. What is the name of the chromosomal mutation in which gametes have more than 2 full sets of chromosomes?

A: deletion
B: translocation
C: inversion
D: polyploidy

2. Which section of the marine biome receives no sunlight?

A: littoral
B: neritic
C: abyssal
D: pelagic

3. Which of the following is NOT a characteristic of reptiles?

A: they undergo metamorphosis
B: they are covered with scales
C: they are ectothermic
D: they hatch from amniotic eggs

4. Which part of a eukaryotic cell is responsible for aerobic respiration?

A: nucleus
B: cell membrane
C: mitochondria
D: lysosome

5. What is another name for a random change in allele frequency?

A: mutation
B: deletion
C: gene flow
D: genetic drift

Answer Key

1. D. Chromosomal mutations affect the entire organism.
2. C. The abyssal areas are the deepest parts of the ocean.
3. A. Undergoing metamorphosis is characteristic of amphibians.
4. C. The mitochondria are known as the “power plant” of the cell.
5. D. Genetic drift results in either the founder effect or the bottleneck effect.