Unit 3-C: The plasma membrane

by S. Henderson

Manzano H.S.
November 2004

UNIT OBJECTIVES: By the end of this unit, you should be able to
1.    Describe the structure of a cell membrane and relate this to its function,
2.    Explain the concept of selective permeability using various examples,
3.    Compare and contrast the different methods of cellular transport,
4.    Predict the direction of diffusion of a dissolved substance,

ASSIGNMENT LIST: You may turn in work that adds up to 100 points, not including what is required.  Make sure to turn in all the work for this unit by the due date listed above. 

 REQUIRED OF EVERYONE:  (These will be separate grades in the gradebook.)

_____  LAB: Diffusion & Osmosis        LAB DAYS: __________________________     25 pts
_____  Test 7A: The Cell Membrane    TEST DAY: _________________________        30 pts

"C" LEVEL WORK:  You may not exceed 70 points.                       C = 56-70 points

_____  Listen to lecture and fill out the outline.  Day 1  2  3  4  5 pts/day     
_____  Watch video on cells and jot down 10 things you learned from it  10 pts
_____  Watch the video on cell and do the accompanying worksheet   10 pts
_____  Do the Section Review questions for Ch. 9.   10 pts/Review
_____  Rewrite Section Objectives as questions and answer them.  2 pts/Objective
_____  Do any 3 Workbook pages for Chapter.  5 pts/Page
_____  Make a concept map with all key terms from the chapter.  10 pts
_____  Make flashcards for all key terms & learn them. You’ll be randomly quizzed and will get 1 pt for  every one you get right  10 pts
_____  Write a song that summarizes the chapter.  Include at least 10 new facts and perform it for at least 2 people.  10 pts
_____  Properly label a diagram of the fluid mosaic model of the PM.  5 pts
_____  Build a 3-D model of the fluid mosaic model of the PM.  Include all parts and a key.  10 pts
_____  Make a table that lists the parts and functions of each component of the plasma membrane.  10 pts
_____  Make a list of 10 common household objects that are selectively permeable.  For each object listed, provide an explanation.  10 pts
_____  In a paragraph, explain the role that polarity plays in the membrane’s ability to be selective.  10 pts
_____  Make a table that compares the modes of passive transport to the modes of active transport.  Identify the types of materials transported by each mode.  10 pts

"B" LEVEL WORK:  Choose only one assignment worth 15 points.               B = 71-85 pts
_____  Using an egg, some vinegar and corn syrup to demonstrate what is meant by permeability. Write your lab report according to the guidelines provided below.   15 pts
_____  Do the BioLab on p. 218-219 of your book.  Write your lab report according to the guidelines provided below.  15 pts
_____  Do the Thinking Lab on p. 231.  Write a lab report according to the guidelines provided.  15 pts

"A"  LEVEL WORK:  Choose only one assignment, worth 15 points.           A = 86 – 100 pts

_____  Do some research on the development of the fluid mosaic model.  Write a 350-word report that details the contributions of at least 5 important scientists. Include a bibliography of your sources  using the APA guidelines provided.  15 pts
_____  What exactly is cholesterol?  What type of bio-molecule is it?  Why is it so important to our health? What are the major types of cholesterol?  Why is too much cholesterol bad for us?  What is the role played by cholesterol in the plasma membrane?  Design a PowerPoint presentation that includes at least 5 slides that answer these questions.  Include a list of your sources of information.  15 pts
_____  Research a specific disorder that is caused by problems with the plasma membrane of cells.  (This will require some web-quests using search engines or specific websites like WebMD,,, etc.)  Once you have enough information to relay to the public, design an informative pamphlet that can be distributed in doctors’ offices.  Make certain that your pamphlet includes the cause, symptoms, preventive measures, risk factors, possible treatments, and research  that is being done on this particular disorder.  15 pts

    A            B           C           D
86-100    71-85    56-70    40-55