The Language of Science

 

Science contains a language all its own.  The main reason individuals find it difficult to understand many of the sciences is its difficult looking vocabulary.  Large words are associated with difficulty, and difficulty equates to hard.  So by the vocabulary alone science is hard.  Actually, scientific vocabulary is a hodge podge of roots, prefixes, and suffixes put together to describe events, body parts, or functions, etc. observed by the individuals studying the process.  Below you will find a list of the more common prefixes and suffixes and their meaning(s).  If one can learn their meaning(s), they will be well on their way to understanding the vast vocabulary of science.

 

Word Part

Meaning

Example

a or an

not or non.

abiotic

ana apart, up again anaphase,

aero-

needing oxygen or air

aerodynamic

anti-

against

antibody

archea-

ancient, original

archaeologist

arth-

jointed, joint

arthropod

auto

self

autotrophic

bi-, di

two, double

bilateral, disaccharide

bio

related to life

biology

cephalo

head

cephalization

chloro

green, chlorine

chlorophyll

chondro cartilage chondrogenic- giving rise to cartilage

chromo-

colored

chromosome

-cyte, cyto

cell

amebocyte, endocytosis

-cyst

pouch

blastocyst.

-derm, derma-

skin, covering

echinoderm

epi-

above

epitasis

ecto-, exo-

outer, external

ectothermic, exoskeleton

-emia

accumulation

anemia

endo-

inside, inner

endodermis, endothermic

eu-

true, modern

eukaryote

gastro-

stomach

gastrointestinal

-gen, gen-

make, produce

genetics, antigen

glycol

pertaining to glucose

glycolysis

geo-

pertaining to the earth

geophysical

hemo-

blood

hemoglobin

herb-

plant

herbivore

hetero-

different, mixed

heterotroph

homo-, homeo

same

homologous, homeostasis

hypo-

under, less

hypotonic

hyper-

over, more

hypertension

iso

equivalent

isotonic


 

 

-itis

inflammation

arthritis

leuco-, leuko

white

leukocyte, leukemia

lipo-

pertaining to fat

lipolysis

-logy

study of

biology

macro-

large

macroscopic

meso-

middle

mesoderm

meter-

measurement

meteorology

micro-

small

microscopic

mono-

singularly or one

monocot

multi-

more than one

multidimensional

nephr

kidney

nephritis

-osis

tissue damage

necrosis

-ped(e), -pod

foot, leg

centipede, gastropod

-phage, phago

eat, engulf

macrophage, phagocyte

photo-

light

photosynthesis

-plasm

forming

cytoplasm

poly-

many

polymer, polyploidy

pro-, proto-

first, early

prokaryote, protostome

syn-

combine together

protein synthesis

-some, soma-

body

chromosome, somatic

-troph

nutrition, feeding

phototroph

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

AP Biology 

Name_________________________                                        Date Due______________

 

 

Directions:  Using the Language of Science vocabulary list, determine the meaning of the following scientific words.

 

1.  Biology

 

2.  Abiotic

 

3.  Micronucleus

 

4.  Polycystic

 

5.  Liposuction

 

6.  Autophage

 

7.  Glycolysis

 

8.  Gastritis

 

9.  Photosynthesis

 

10.  Polysaccharide

 

 

 

Directions:  Match the definition with the correct scientific word. 

 

 

1.

_____

 Aerobic respiration

a. Layer of tissue that produces   digestive enzymes.

2.

_____

Arthropod

b. Breaking up of a cell.

3.

_____

Polycystic

c. Inflammation of the appendix.

4.

_____

Arthritis

d. Needing oxygen to live.

5.

_____

Gastroderm

e. Jointed appendages.

6.

_____

Photometer

f. A substance that is not part of an organismís body.

7.

_____

Anaerobic respiration

g. Measures light intensity.

8.

_____

Antigen

h. Not needing oxygen to live.

9.

_____

Cytolysis

i. Inflammation of the joints.

10.

_____

Appendicitis

j. A structure divided into many compartments.