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This web-based module provides students with a basic understanding of how fossils can be used to interpret the past.
UC Museum of Paleontology
One to two class periods.
Correspondence to the Next Generation Science Standards is indicated in parentheses after each relevant concept. See our conceptual framework for details.
- Present-day life forms are descended from past life forms; all life is related. (LS4.A)
- Geological change and biological evolution are linked.
- Most species that once lived on Earth have gone extinct. (LS4.A)
- The patterns of life's diversity through time provide evidence of evolution. (LS4.A)
- An organism’s features reflect its evolutionary history.
- Fossils provide evidence of past life. (LS4.A)
- The fossil record contains organisms with transitional features.
- Scientists use anatomical features to infer the relatedness of taxa. (LS4.A)