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This free course, Meiosis and mitosis, looks at how units of inheritance are transmitted from one generation to the next. First you will look at what happens to the chromosomes of animals and plants during the process of sexual reproduction. Then you will examine how genes are transmitted in particular patterns from generation to generation. These two approaches combine to illustrate how the patterns of inheritance can be explained by the behaviour of chromosomes during sexual reproduction.
After studying this course, you should be able to:
- understand that the number of chromosomes is characteristic of each species and can vary enormously between species
- recognise that genetics is based on the concept of the gene as the unit of inheritance
- understand that sexual reproduction always includes two distinctive processes: the production of gametes, which involves meiosis, and fertilisation.
- understand that a particular phenotypic character is determined by the two copies of a gene that an organism possesses and these two copies are identical in a pure-breeding variety
- understand that when organisms with contrasting characters for which they are pure-breeding are crossed, the dominant character appears in the first offspring or first filial generation and the recessive character is masked.
- Current section: Introduction
- Learning outcomes
- 1 course introduction
- 1.1 Meiosis and the life cycle
- 1.2 Like begets like
- 1.3 Patterns of inheritance
- 5 Why not an exact 3:1 ratio?
- 6 Inheritance of more than one pair of contrasting characters
- Keep on learning
Study this free course
Enrol to access the full course, get recognition for the skills you learn, track your progress and on completion gain a statement of participation to demonstrate your learning to others. Make your learning visible!
Meiosis and mitosis
This course looks at how units if inheritance are transmitted from one generation to the next. First you will look at what happens to the chromosomes of animals and plants during the process of sexual reproduction. Then you will examine how genes are transmitted in particular patterns from generation to generation. These two approaches combine to illustrate how the patterns of inheritance can be explained by the behaviour of chromosomes during sexual reproduction.
This OpenLearn course provides a sample of level 1 study in
This free course includes adapted extracts from an Open University course which is no longer available to new students. If you found this interesting you could explore more free Biology courses or view the range of currently available OU Biology courses.
Copyright & revisions
Originally published: Wednesday, 16th March 2016
Last updated on: Wednesday, 16th March 2016
- Creative-Commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence. However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions. Full details can be found in the Acknowledgements and our FAQs section.
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