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SCIE206-1301B-08 Biology
Assignment Name: Unit 1 Discussion Board
Deliverable Length: 4-5 paragraphs

The Discussion Board (DB) is part of the core of online learning. Classroom discussion in an online environment requires the active participation of students and the instructor to create robust interaction and dialogue. Every student is expected to create an original response to the open-ended DB question as well as engage in dialogue by responding to posts created by others throughout the week. At the end of each unit, DB participation will be assessed based on both level of engagement and the quality of the contribution to the discussion.

At a minimum, each student will be expected to post an original and thoughtful response to the DB question and contribute to the weekly dialogue by responding to at least two other posts from students. The first contribution must be posted before midnight (Central Time) on Wednesday of each week. Two additional responses are required after Wednesday of each week. Students are highly encouraged to engage on the Discussion Board early and often, as that is the primary way the university tracks class attendance and participation.

The purpose of the Discussion Board is to allow students to learn through sharing ideas and experiences as they relate to course content and the DB question. Because it is not possible to engage in two-way dialogue after a conversation has ended, no posts to the DB will be accepted after the end of each unit.

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Background: In this assignment, you will investigate the chemical composition of the foods we eat as our bodies break down food by the digestive process.

The USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory has posted a resource through which you can investigate the chemical composition of foods. Go to the USDA Lab Link at USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory.


  1. Type in a keyword, then select a food group using the drop-down arrow, then click “submit.”
  2. This pulls up a menu with lots of choices.
  3. Choose one food choice, then click “submit”
  4. Next choose a portion size, then click “submit”
  5. This will bring up the nutritional information needed to complete the assignment.


  • Keyword: Apple
  • Select Food Group: Fruits and Fruit Juice
  • Apples, raw, with skin.
  • One medium

Assignment details:

A. Nutrition: Analyze the nutritional components of the food you select; and in your own words, answer the following questions using the USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory Web site as listed in the unit Web resources:

  1. What was the food and portion size you chose?
  2. Describe its composition in terms of carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins.
  3. How many calories are in your food item? (Found in the Database as Energy – kcal)
  4. List some of the most common vitamins and minerals in this food item.
  5. Are there other important nutritional components of this food item? If so, list these. If not, say so.

B. Water:

  1. How much of your food item is water?
  2. Provide one reason why water is important for life. To adequately answer this question, it will be necessary to explain a reason for water’s importance based upon its chemical and /or physical properties.

C. Biological Molecule:

  1. State the most abundant category of biological molecule in your food: carbohydrates, lipids, or proteins.
  2. Describe the structure of this type of molecule, and its primary function(s). This section will not be a one sentence answer. In order to adequately “describe” an entire category of biological molecules, you will need to briefly review their basic molecular structures and functions.

D. Recommendation:

After identifying the nutritional components, discuss WHY you would or would not recommend this food item as part of a healthy, nutritious diet. Be sure to use references and guidelines such as the Food Pyramid and Recommended Daily Allowances to support your recommendations.

You can go to the USDA interactive Food Pyramid resources to help you analyze nutritional needs. Here is the link:

Organize and label your DB according to the four assignment parts, A. Nutrition; B. Water; C. Biological Molecules; and D. Recommendation.

Post your DB by responding to the assignment. You may respond to the assignment by selecting the “reply to forum” option and typing your response directly, or you may copy and paste your response into the DB response box.

Provide references in APA format. This includes a reference list and in-text citations for references used throughout the assignment.

Important: Each person in the class should choose a DIFFERENT food item. Read other students’ posts first to see what they have selected and choose a different food item.

In your own words, please post responses to the Discussion Board posts of at least two of your classmates. Responses must be substantive, i.e. say something of substance that advances the discussion about the concepts. You will be graded on the quality of your postings.

For assistance with your assignment, please use your text, the AIU Library, Web resources, and all course materials. Please refer to the following multimedia course material(s).

External Web links:

  • Unit 1: USDA National Nutrient Database
  • Unit 1: Food Pyramid Guide

For assistance with your assignment, please use your text, Web resources, and all course materials. Please refer to the following material(s):

External Web links:

  • Unit 1: The Scientific USDA National Nutrient Database
  • Unit 1: Food Pyramid Guide
Points Possible: 75
Date Due: Sunday, Mar 31, 2013
  • Describe the relationship between chemistry and the characteristics of living things.
Submitted Files: Discussion Board
Score: N/A