Genetic studies can be complicated and time consuming because it can take several weeks to breed multiple generations. Drosophila, or the fruit fly, is a common model organism for genetic studies. There are also many programs and apps intended to simulate these genetic studies. Drosophilab is a free, robust program that can be used in a unit on genetics. This worksheet assigns tasks for students to complete with the simulator, including monohybrid crosses, sex-linked crosses, backcrossing, and chromosome maps. The program has a built in chi-square calculator that allows students to confirm their results.
You will need to set the program up prior to students going to the computer lab. The program can be loaded onto each computer (does not require an internet connection to run) and you will need to download the fly file which includes the parents needed for each task. These flies need to be placed in the program folder so they can be accessed from within the program.
Grade Level: 11-12
Time Required: 2 Hours
HS-LS3-3 Apply concepts of statistics and probability to explain the variation and distribution of expressed traits in a population