Genetics Project

The student's final project in our unit on hereditary genetics will be a choice between making a family pedigree or a research presentation on a genetic disorder of their choosing.

This project is in lieu of a final chapter exam and counts as heavily as an exam would!!!

Both projects must have a minimum of 3 credible, scientific resources to receive full credit in the sources section.

Family Pedigree

Complete a pedigree for you family to meet the following criteria:

  • Clearly present your pedigree in an appropriate format. The entire pedigree needs to be viewable at one time. A poster or MS Publisher document will probably work best...Powerpoint and Word will most likely not work.
  • Pedigree must cover 3 generations and at least 12 individuals.
    • You do not need to include names, but you must indicate where you are on the poster.
  • At least 3 different traits must be displayed on the pedigree. It is up to the presenter how they wish to display these traits (3 separate pedigree posters, key/color coded boxes, etc.) The traits being traced are up to the presenter, but should demonstrate dominant and recessive alleles. E.G.:
    • Hairline (widow's peak)
    • Earlobes
    • Chin cleft
    • Bent little finger
    • Mid-digital hair
    • Color blindness (sex-linked)
    • Others are possible depending on families...research!
  • A brief explanation of each trait must be included in the pedigree. This must include the physical characteristics of the trait (pictures would help) and genotypes responsible for the particular phenotype.
  • For each individual, their genotype must be stated for each trait. If it cannot be determined for sure, state all possible genotypes or include an explanation of why you cannot determine the genotype.
  • A key must be included to allow an individual to determine the characteristics of individuals on the poster.

Consult your teacher, book, or online resources (make sure they are credible) for help making your pedigree. You need to follow standard conventions but are free to use whatever colors and presentation method you like.

Research Project

Choose a genetic disorder to research and create a presentation to the class on what you have learned while meeting the following requirements:

  • Clearly teach the class about your research with an oral presentation and some sort of multimedia format (Powerpoint, Glogster, create a website/wiki/blog/movie/podcast/etc). Ask if you need help with one of these.
  • What is the name of the disorder and what is the history behind the disorder? Who discovered it or/and who have done research on the disease?
  • How is the disorder diagnosed? How does a person receive the disorder? Is it sex-linked? Is it a mutation? Is it due to heredity?
  • You will need to find out all of the signs and symptoms of the given disorder and share these with the class.
  • What types of treatment are there for the disorder?
  • You are encouraged to share any other information that you feel is relevant that you feel is important for others to know about the genetic disorder.

Your finished project must be shared with me to receive full credit for the project.


List of possible disorders to present:

  • Achondroplasia (Dwarfism)
  • Albinism
  • Adrenal hyperplasia
  • Autism/ Asperger syndrome
  • Cystic Fibrosis
  • Down Syndrome (Trisomy 21)
  • Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy
  • Familial Dysautonomia
  • Gardner syndrome (intestinal polyposis)
  • Gaucher’s Disease
  • Hemophilia
  • Huntington’s Disease
  • Jacobsen Syndrome
  • Klinefelters Syndrome
  • Klippel-Feil Syndrome
  • Leukodystrophy
  • Lou Gehrig's Disease (ALS)
  • Marfan Syndrome
  • Moebius Syndrome
  • Polycystic Kidney Disease
  • Progeria
  • Proteus Syndrome
  • noblastoma
  • Rett’s Syndrome
  • Spinocerebellar Ataxia
  • Tay-Sachs Disease
  • Tourette Syndrome
  • Turner Syndrome